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A retail personal banker is the face and selling point of any financial institution. All banks, small and large, need their services to strengthen customer relationships. They meet with new and existing clients and the impression they give clients becomes that of the whole bank. Retail personal banking is a one-stop shop in a bank. They handle transactions, solve problems for customers, promote bank products, adhere to banking regulations and refer customers to specialists.
Handling Transactions and Operations
Retail bankers assume the functions of tellers, such as assisting customers when choosing financial services and bank accounts, clerical duties, counting cash, cross selling bank services or products and opening, maintaining and closing bank accounts. Banks are required to adhere to certain codes of regulations when dealing with their customers. According to the Delaware Banking Association, personal bankers must be conversant in 16 banking conventions guiding handling of deposits, privacy and security, equal treatment, ethics, integrity in lending and real estate, starting in 2013.
The better part of a personal banker’s day involves interacting with potential and existing customers. This entails listening to customers’ concerns and queries, assessing their needs and reacting accordingly to provide solutions. Some of the problems that customers present include new accounts, debit card issues, secure deposit access and general customer service complaints. In addition to physical interaction, they follow-up with clients to establish whether they have found suitable solutions and that they are satisfied with services rendered. They also inform customers about new products and opportunities that may be beneficial to them, and establish a solid relationship with customers on behalf of the bank.
Each personal banker has sales targets outlined by the bank for different products such as loans, certificates of deposit, credit cards, paperless banking or savings accounts. They have a proper understanding of the products and it is up to them to present them well to the customer. Customer relations established by bankers have a significant impact on the sales of these products and services. Their success in selling these products is determined by their ability to match the customer's needs with the product’s features and financial benefits. In order to carry out sales functions, personal bankers must be licensed by relevant bodies.
Occasionally, customers approach retail personal bankers with needs or questions that are beyond their capacity or specialty. The personal banker then guides customers to the suitable bank expert depending on the nature of their needs. They understand the customers well because of the rapport already established, and also understand the bank functions and departments. Referring the customer to the right mortgage expert, financial consultant or trust officers is an effective way of driving up bank sales and profitability. It also becomes possible for the bank to tailor products to meet the needs of customers.
Joseph Petrick has been a writer and editor since 2003. He writes career, business and education articles. His work has appeared in several online publications including Career Today. Petrick holds a Master of Arts in philosophy/economic anthropology from Pennsylvania State University.