View Full Version : Should I make a complaint?

MK Printing
19-07-2006, 04:49 PM
Hello peeps

I know we all hate banks in general but I had a very unusual experience this afternoon with my bank.

I signed up for a business bank account last year where I was told that I would get 12 months free banking, then after this time I would have to pay for counter service etc. I asked if there was a monthly fee, which I was told no, as long as I did everything by phone or online, I wouldnít have to pay for the account.

Earlier this year the bank introduced a monthly fee, to be honest I didnít even read the letter as I knew that I didnít pay for banking charges. I then got sent a bill the other day that I am not happy with.

I called the bank who said they would send a fax to my business banking advisor (or something along those lines) and that they would get back to me with 48 hours. They didnít. I logged a complaint online and got a letter a few days later saying they would look into it for me. I got another letter yesterday informing me that there were no charges, they had investigated my personal account!

I had to call the bank and speak with someone to carefully explain the situation, they said they would get someone on to it ASAP.

I then had the most bizarre call from a ďcustomer services relationship account managers etc etc etcĒ who was frankly quite rude. I explained that I am prepared to pay for the counter services, but I would like the monthly fee dropped. She went on about their profit margins etc etc, frankly I really didnít care.

I put it very simply, when I used to promote club nights it was £4 before 11pm and £5 after, at 11:05 we didnít go round everyone inside collecting another £1. She said she understood my position and then went on to talk about her problems about having to pay £80 a month for a tram pass. Again I didnít care, that is her problem.

The call ended with me saying if this small charge was not lifted I was going to close my account, and reopen another one, she called me petty! I then said I was going to close my business account, my current account and my ISA unless this small charge was removed. She said she was still unprepared to drop the charge. I then mentioned that I was going to be making X amount on money a year, she said that it was up to her and that I had to provide financial forecasts and she may think about it.

I then got a call 10 minutes later informing me that the charges would not be dropped.

Her customer service level was terrible and she talked about her problems and her profit margins rather than focusing on the actual issue. All I want is for this silly little charge to be dropped and I will leave all my accounts as they are.

Do you think I should contact the bank and tell them of my experience with this woman? I have her full name and basically I donít think she is anywhere near qualified or even suited to her role.


19-07-2006, 04:57 PM
It's not Barclays by any chance is it?

That sounds like their level of incompetence!

And yes, i think you should make a complaint, they get paid to provide customer service after all so it shouldn't be a problem for them to be nice!

MK Printing
19-07-2006, 05:01 PM
Ha ha, it might be yes.

I just can't believe what a tit the woman was and how she went on about her problems, like I may have cared.

I am going to put in a complaint because the level of service they provided was just terrible.


19-07-2006, 05:11 PM
You should complain. Their personal situation and profit margins have no bearing on you from a customer service standpoint.

I once had a similar situation with a certain bank when I overheard a bank employee telling another employee that there was a pain in the **** customer to see them (that would be me then). They didn't realise I was in earshot.

This was the last straw in a catalogue of errors and I wrote a very stern letter to the bank manager carefully outlining each of my issues and the expected resolution.

I got a very apologetic phone call a few days later and £150 compensation.

19-07-2006, 11:20 PM
if it's barclays complain. they do this to loads of companies thinking that you will never change banks. if you do start making a decent profit always ask your bank to tender for the joy of being your bankers next year. never forget. they are the service provider and should be treated like a utility company.

20-07-2006, 10:19 AM
Banks like to play on the fact that people generally won't change their bank accounts. People will complain, but they'll stay. (I think I heard that you're more likely to get a divorce than change banks). Banks need customer's money to exist, so their customer service should be as good as regular shops. If you don't like them and won't get along, then change. It'll be their loss.

MK Printing
20-07-2006, 10:31 AM
I have written a 3 page letter and I am sending it to my dad to go over. He used to be a bank manager, for Barclays infact, but he left as he didn't like the way that the banking world was going.

On a more positive note and one a great customer service, my parents went to Pitcher and Piano for a meal the other night in York, they go about once a month. There was a card on the table saying please give us feedback and a contact number. My dad had had a bottle of wine and decided to call the number and he spoke to one of the managers. He said that has was out and about, but he would call them back later.

The manager called my dad back the next morning and thanked him for his feedback and took his address. Yesterday my dad got a thank you letter and £25 worth of vouchers! They are going back next week and taking some friends too.

My parents are as pleased as punch and they will be going more often now and also taking friends. I think that this is an excellent example of customer service and my parents are now walking adverts for their business.


20-07-2006, 10:53 AM
I complained to Lloyds bank once and got £50 out of them so could be worth a try!


20-07-2006, 11:32 AM
Definitely complain. Banks seem to think they are untouchable - my father had a recent problem where an error on their part led to a snowball effect of bank charges due to not enough funds in the account. In essence what they did in that situation was illegal as bank charges are meant to just cover administration costs and from what I know - not one case has gone to court as the banks do not want their little money earner being branded as a con - i think there was some publicity about this a few months ago (also covering credit card charges). The amount of people I know that have had problems with banks that in some cases have got quite serious (one friend was accepted for a career development loan;left a well paid job; moved city and started uni only for the bank to mess up, ask him to reapply and then tell him because he now wasn't working he wasn't eligible - though the fact he wasn't working was due to them offering him a CDL and him using that for studies eluded them!!!!! It took him months of constant contact (and no money) to finally get what he was due in the first place.

In terms of customer service I remember one customer service agent for a TV/Phone?broadband company trying to argue to me the nuances of contract law when she blatantly did not have a clue - at some points she got quite rude. At least you got the full name - i was only allowed a first name! As in all these situations it seems to take a hell of a long time for someone to accept you are right when you are rather obviously right.

I am not having a go at customer service agents as i myself have done customer service jobs (i was always on the customers' side which did not seem to go down well with my bosses) but in a lot of cases it is pointless conversation as the people you talk to do not have authority to do anything and often do not have a full knowledge of situations (the staff turnaround in these jobs i assume is quite high). Trying to speak to someone with authority is a mission in itself.

Backtracking to banks and other huge organisations - one of the major problems i find is the amount of different people you have to deal with and the amount of paperwork that seems to get lost as well as notes on the computer that arn't there despite me specifically asking for notes to be put on. It feels like you have to start again everytime you contact them and sometimes the amount of time and effort needed to get done what should have been done is amazing.

Although not working in law i do have a law degree and had quite a lot of success in complaints to a variety of companies via email and letters where I throw in a little legalese language with a hint of further action and the message that its not about the money but this is now an issue i refuse to let go - i then throw in the llb letters after my name and more often than not they suddenly are nice and agreable and often compensatory. In all the places i have worked theres nothing like the threat of legal action to make people see sense as i guess they are worried if things did escalate then their names will be attached to the f@ck up.

ah i feel better now.

MK Printing
20-07-2006, 01:16 PM
Ah, I do love Barclays.

I have given them a very simple ultimatum, to either solve this problem the fast easy way, or the long hard way.

The easy way is to admit they were wrong, refund my bank charges and then stop charging me for the account that my business manager said I would get for FREE for the duration of the account.

The hard way is for me to now write to head office, make a complaint about the business manager who called me yesterday who was rude, unprofessional and incompetent, to call the complaints team on a daily basis, to visit my local branch and take up as much time of theirs as possible. I will also close my account and reopen it to cause them as much financial and time loss as I possibly can.

I have stated to them that I will not back down, I will persist in this issue and I will have the charges dropped. They can either loose £3 a month a keep an extremely loyal and good customer, or they can drag it out and loose much more money and man hours.

Again they stated that in September they brought in new charges etc etc etc, again I said that I donít care. When someone says to you that your account will be free as long as you do not use certain services, then I expect it to be free. I clearly remember at the time asking that after the free period was up, would there be a charge, ďNO, not as long as you do not use the chargeable servicesĒ.

Why are Barclays jeopardising the loyalty of a long standing customer over a very simple matter?