What Are Banking Customer Service Skills? (With Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 17, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Some characteristics of effective customer service professionals include being caring, patient, positive, and attentive. Providing excellent customer service is essential in the banking industry to ensure you provide value and retain customers. As a result, understanding the necessary customer service skills can help you improve customer satisfaction and build loyalty. In this article, we discuss banking customer service skills, highlight the necessary skills to provide customer service for banks, and provide tips to help you offer excellent customer service.

What are banking customer service skills?

Banking customer service skills entail competencies that you employ when helping customers choose the right products and services, advocating to ensure they achieve their financial goals, and assisting them with their financial decisions. For instance, you might require these skills when helping customers process loans and complete transactions such as withdrawing and depositing funds. Providing excellent customer service through these skills in the banking industry is essential because it ensures you satisfy their needs, make them feel valued, and improve customer retention.

Related: How to Write a Bank Customer Service Representative Resume

Necessary skills to provide customer service for banks

Here are some essential skills to ensure you provide good customer service in the banking industry:

Industry knowledge

As a bank employee, it's essential to understand the various services and products the bank offers to help you satisfy the customers' needs adequately. Consider familiarizing yourself with the bank offerings to help you provide accurate answers to customers' queries and ensure they make the best financial decisions based on their resources. Common products or services a bank may offer include:

  • college savings plans

  • checking and savings options

  • business, home, auto, and personal loans

  • individual retirement accounts

  • certificates of deposit

  • safe-deposit boxes

  • lines of credit

  • tax and estate planning

Related: Everything You Need to Know About How to Get a Job at a Bank

Interpersonal skills

Exceptional interpersonal skills may help you earn the trust of clients and have seamless interactions with customers. For example, discussing finances may be a sensitive topic for some people, so it's essential to make customers feel comfortable discussing their finances with you. Excellent interpersonal skills allow you to build a rapport and connect with customers. Similarly, some customers may have personal questions about applications, overdraft fees, or mortgage processing. It's essential to offer viable options, provide concise and clear explanations, and work with them to find the most suitable solution for their situation.

Technical knowledge

The technology used in the banking industry evolves constantly. It's essential to remain updated about the latest features, systems, and digital platforms the company uses to ensure it can cater to customers' needs adequately. In addition, as a banking professional, your duties may include teaching customers how to use new tools such as remote deposits, online banking, ATMs, and mobile applications.

This requires you to possess extensive technical knowledge. With it, you can also offer to demonstrate how these devices, applications, or features work to ensure customers understand their benefits and are comfortable using them. Demonstrating how these pieces of technology work can help customers adapt to change easily.

Effective communication

As a professional in the banking industry, it's essential to know how to communicate complex and technical financial information in simple terms to ensure customers fully understand their options. You can take the time to explain banking terms at the customer's pace and stop at regular intervals to answer any questions they have and ensure they understand you. In addition, consider familiarizing yourself with complex banking topics to ensure you have a functional understanding of these concepts. Understanding these challenging concepts can help you accurate answers and thoroughly explain them to customers.

Some topics you can study that customers may have queries on include:

  • comparing loan products

  • calculating internet rates

  • understanding overdraft protection

  • recovering from identity theft

  • using remote and online remote banking options

  • deciphering credit scores

Empathy

When you encounter a customer with a financial challenge, it's advisable to show empathy to assure them you understand their situation. Doing this helps the customer feel more comfortable and allows you to communicate more effectively. Listen to each customer's concerns and let them know that you're happy to help them find a solution. Then, politely list the available options and answer any questions they may have. Being empathetic towards customers helps customers have a pleasant experience, encouraging them to retain your services.

Attention to detail

Being attentive to details helps you provide accurate information to customers and make correct changes to their accounts. It may also help you safeguard the customer's financial assets by allowing you to identify issues before they happen. In addition, being attentive to the customers' requests can help you ask the right questions and identify relevant details you require to perform their requests.

Patience

If you work as a customer service representative, patience is an essential skill to help you provide good customer care to customers. Your duties may require you to answer numerous customer questions about the organization's products and services. It may be necessary for you to repeat instructions multiple times to ensure they understand their options.

Generally, your responsibility is to ensure that customers feel safe and have all the necessary information to make financially sound decisions. It's advisable to remain personable and provide clear answers to their questions throughout the conversation. Doing this helps keep the conversation on track and makes customers feel valued.

Problem-solving skills

As a professional in the banking industry, your responsibilities include working with customers to develop effective solutions to their problems. When you encounter a problem, it's advisable to discuss customers to assess the situation and understand the desired outcome. Understanding the situation and expected results can you identify the necessary steps to solve the problem. In addition, working with customers to overcome challenges may help them feel more comfortable and secure.

Dependability

Being dependable helps you build trust with customers and other team members. It's essential to always follow through with promises made to customers or team members. For example, if a customer requests that you process their mortgage, ensure you process their request on time. This helps improve their overall experience and presents you as a reliable professional.

Friendliness

You can help make a customer's experience more pleasant by greeting them with a positive attitude and a smile when interacting with them. You may also consider trying to know your regular customers by asking about their interests, weekend plans, or hobbies as you process their requests. Being friendly and polite helps you build a rapport with the customers, provide them with more personalized service, and develop stronger relationships. In addition, making customers feel valued and welcomed ensures that they remain loyal to the company.

Responsiveness

It's good practice to promptly respond to customers' service requests and inquiries. This helps demonstrate that you value the customer's time. Additionally, responding to a customer's challenge on time can help you reduce their stress, make a positive impression, and diffuse any tension. It may be beneficial to be proactive when dealing with customers. Consider reaching out to them immediately if you have essential information or notice any significant changes in their accounts. Being responsive helps build relationships and improve your communication with customers.

Active listening

Practising active listening with customers may make them feel heard and understood. Consider making eye contact with customers and allowing them to explain their issues before proffering solutions. You may also repeat a part of their question to show that you were paying attention to them. Active listening helps you establish a common ground with the clients and ensure you have the same interests before moving forward with the solution.

Decision-making skills

When working in the banking industry, one of your responsibilities involves evaluating customers' needs. Sometimes, customers may require individualized recommendations for their issues. In such cases, you can help customers make critical financial decisions by informing them about the bank's products or services. It may also benefit you to learn the features and benefits of different offerings to ensure you make better decisions and adequately guide the customers.

Tips for providing exceptional customer service

Here are some tips to help you provide exceptional customer service in your workplace:

Show gratitude

It's important to show gratitude to customers. This helps them feel valued, which can help build loyalty. Appreciate them for patronizing the brand, their patience during a complaint, and in other cases where the needs arise. You may also consider sending "thank you" notes or messages for a more personal gesture.

Involve customers in the work process

Carrying customers along in the company's operations may encourage them to continue patronizing the company and increase their loyalty. For example, you can ask customers to suggest how the company can improve their offerings and services. You may include them when testing new processes or allow them to vote on some features such as logos and colours.

Display concern for social issues

Showing support and concern about pertinent social issues can show that the company values its customers. The company can show support by assisting individuals from disadvantaged groups, campaigning for social justice, and donating to charitable causes. Doing this helps a company connect with customers and the community.

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