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A Working Report

on Customer
Services of HSBC

By:
Shanila Mehnaz Ahmed
Id-0410135

Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB)


April 2009

1
A Working Report
on Customer
Services of HSBC

By:
Shanila Mehnaz Ahmed
Id-0410135

An Internship Report Presented as the Partial Fulfillment of


the Requirements for the Degree Bachelors of Business
Administration

Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB)


April 30, 2009

2
A Working Report
on Customer
Services of HSBC

By:
Shanila Mehnaz Ahmed
Id-0410135

This report has been approved by


Mr. Mohammad Arafat
Lecturer,
School of Business
Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB)
February 5, 2009

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April 30, 2009

Mr. Mohammad Arafat


Lecturer
School of Business
Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB)

Subject: Letter of Transmittal

Dear Sir,

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the guidance and support you have
provided me during the course of this report. Without your help, this report would not
have been impossible to complete. With deep gratitude, I also acknowledge the help
provided by Md Ahteshamul Haque, Customer Service Manager, HSBC Gulshan Booth,
for providing me utmost supervision during my internship in the bank.

Although my report has been successfully completed, I had to face a few problems to get
to the final stage. Firstly, it was hard to do long hour work in the bank and come back
home to write the report. At one stage my report writing came to a halt since the work-
load in the bank was unbearable.

Another problem I faced during the three months was to regularly meet up with you.
Since I was assigned at the customer service; I could not leave the bank during the office
hours.

Nevertheless, I have overcome all the problems and completed the report. I would really
appreciate it you enlighten me with your thoughts and views regarding the report. Also, if
you wish to enquire about an aspect of my report, I would gladly answer your queries.

Thank you again for your support and patience.

Yours Sincerely,

Shanila Mehnaz Ahmed

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Acknowledgements

First I would like to thank Customer Service Manager, HSBC, Gulshan Booth, Md.
Ahteshamul Haque, for his guidance and support during the path of my internship.
Moreover, I have learned a lot from his ability to serve the customer, so I would like to
thank him again for that.
Thanks to Mr. Mohammad Arafat, my supervisor, for directing me throughout the
planning and writing of the report. He made sure all my questions were answered, kept
me on track and gave me the support I needed.

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Topic Page No.

Abstract i

1.0 The Organization 1

2.0 Description of Duties and Responsibilities of the Job 11

2.1 Types of Duties Performed 11

2.2 Decisions I have been asked to make or helped to make 14

2.3 Evaluation of my Performance of Assigned Tasks 14

2.4 Assessment of the level of responsibility by my supervisor 15

2.5 Problems encountered on the Job 15

2.6 Competencies and Skills Acquired 16

3.0 Learning from the Organization 17

3.1 Assistance of Supervisor on the Job 17

3.2 Job responsibilities of Co-Workers 18

4.0 Opportunities of Cooperation 20

4.1 Duties during Teamwork 20

4.2 Aid from Employer & Co-Workers 20

5.0 Supervision of Duties 21

6.0 Conclusion 22

7.0 References 23

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Abstract

This report will give a brief description of the type of work I did during my internship at
the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (HSBC). I was placed at the
Gulshan booth where I worked in the customer service section. I worked along with a
team of four other Customer Service Representatives (CSR), a Customer Service
Manager (CSM) and our Branch Manager. Gulshan booth has other sections in it where
other officers worked as well but I will only talk about the section where I worked as an
intern.

Since it is a working report, I depended very less on secondary data accept for the
company history and overview. The company overview was provided to me by my
supervisor which I used in my report but the rest of the information is based on my own
experiences that I encountered while working there as an intern. The report will talk
about the type of work I did, how my supervisor helped me learn my work, what I have
learned from this internship and how my supervisor assessed me on my work.

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1.0 THE ORGANIZATION

An Overview of HSBC Group:


The HSBC Group is named after its founding member, The Hong Kong and Shanghai
Banking Corporation Limited, which was established in 1865 in Hong Kong and
Shanghai to finance the growing trade between China and Europe.

Thomas Sutherland, a Hong Kong Superintendent of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam
Navigation Company helped to establish this bank in March 1865. Throughout the late
nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries, the bank established a network of agencies
and branches based mainly in China and South East Asia but also with representation in
the Indian sub-continent, Japan, Europe and North America.

The post-war political and economic changes in the world forced the bank to analyze its
strategy for continued growth in the 1950s. The bank diversified both its business and its
geographical spread through acquisitions and alliances.

HSBC Holdings plc is a public limited company incorporated in England and Wales in
1990, and headquartered in London since 1993. As of 2009, it is both the world's largest
banking group and the world's 6th largest company according to a composite measure by
Forbes magazine. The group was founded from The Hong Kong and Shanghai
Banking Corporation based in Hong Kong, the acronym of which led to the current
name. Today, whilst no single geographical area dominates the group's earnings, Hong
Kong still continues to be a significant source of its income. Recent acquisitions and
expansions in China are returning HSBC to part of its roots. HSBC has an enormous
operational base in Asia and significant lending, investment, and insurance activities
around the world. The company has a global reach and financial fundamentals matched
by few other banking or financial multinationals.

HSBC is listed on the London, New York, Hong Kong, Paris and Bermuda Stock
Exchanges, and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index and the Hang Seng Index.

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The HSBC Group now comprises a unique range of banks and financial service providers
around the globe.

HSBC maintains one of the world’s largest private data communication networks and is
reconfiguring its business for the e-age. Its rapidly growing e-commerce capability
includes the use of the internet, PC banking over a private network, interactive TV, and
fixed and mobile, including wireless application protocol or WAP-enabled mobile,
telephones.

The establishment in 1999 of HSBC as a uniform, international brand name ensured that
the Group’s corporate symbol has become an increasingly familiar sight across the world.
HSBC differentiates its brand from those of its competitors by describing the unique
characteristics that distinguish HSBC, summarized by the words “The World’s local
bank”.

HSBC’s commitment to service excellence, reputation for stability and understanding of


the region has repeatedly been recognized through citations by major business
publications.

The History of HSBC


The HSBC Group has an international pedigree, which is unique. Many of its principal
companies opened for business over a century ago and they have a history rich in variety
and achievement.

Foundation and Growth:


The inspiration behind the founding of the bank was Thomas Sutherland, a Scot who was
then working as the Hong Kong Superintendent of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam
Navigation Company. He realized that there was considerable demand for local banking
facilities both in Hong Kong and along the China coast and he helped to establish the
bank in March 1865. Then, as now, the bank's headquarters were at 1 Queen's Road
Central in Hong Kong and a branch was opened one month later in Shanghai.

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Throughout the late nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries, the bank established a
network of agencies and branches based mainly in China and South East Asia but also
with representation in the Indian sub-continent, Japan, Europe and North America. In
many of its branches the bank was the pioneer of modern banking practices. From the
outset, trade finance was a strong feature of the bank's business with bullion, exchange
and merchant banking also playing an important part. Additionally, the bank issued notes
in many countries throughout the Far East.

During the Second World War the bank was forced to close many branches and its head
office was temporarily moved to London. However, after the war, the bank played a key
role in the reconstruction of the Hong Kong economy and began to further diversify the
geographical spread of the bank.

The Making of the Modern HSBC Group:


The post-war political and economic changes in the world forced the bank to analyze its
strategy for continued growth in the 1950s. The bank diversified both its business and its
geographical spread through acquisitions and alliances. This strategy culminated in 1992
with one of the largest bank acquisitions in history when HSBC Holdings acquired the
UK’s Midland Bank plc (now called HSBC Bank plc). However, it remained committed
to its historical markets and played an important part in the reconstruction of Hong Kong
where its branch network continued to expand.

In 1959, the bank completed two important purchases, those of The British Bank of the
Middle East (now HSBC Bank Middle East) and the Mercantile Bank. The British Bank
of the Middle East had begun life as the Imperial Bank of Persia in 1889 but throughout
the 1940s and 1950s had extended its sphere of operations and pioneered banking in the
Gulf States. The history of Mercantile Bank stretched back to 1853 - the year it was
founded in Bombay (now Mumbai) - and by the 1950s it had a strong identity within
Indian and other Asian markets.

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In 1965, the bank purchased a controlling interest in Hang Seng Bank, which had been
established in Hong Kong in 1933. By the 1970s the policy of expansion by acquisition
of subsidiaries with their own identities and specializations was firmly in place. Like
1971 The Cyprus Popular Bank Limited (now Laiki Bank) became an associated
company.

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation formed a merchant banking


subsidiary in 1972, Wardley Limited (now called HSBC Investment Bank Asia Limited).
Midland Bank acquired a shareholding in UBAF Bank Limited (now known as British
Arab Commercial Bank Limited). In 1974, Samuel Montagu became a wholly owned
subsidiary of Midland.

In 1978, The Saudi British Bank was established under local control to take over The
British Bank of the Middle East’s branches in Saudi Arabia.

During the 1980s the bank concentrated on moving into those markets where it was not
fully represented.

In 1980, The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation acquired 51% of New York
State’s Marine Midland Bank, N.A. (now called HSBC Bank USA), with a controlling
interest in Concord Leasing. UK-based merchant bank Antony Gibbs became a wholly
owned subsidiary. Midland acquired a controlling interest in leading German private
bank Trinkaus & Burkhardt KGaA (now HSBC Trinkaus & Burkhardt KGaA).

In 1981, The Hongkong Bank of Canada (now HSBC Bank Canada) was established in
Vancouver. The Group also acquired a controlling interest in Equator Holdings Limited.

In 1982, Egyptian British Bank S.A.E. is formed, with the Group holding at a 40%
interest.

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In 1983, Marine Midland Bank acquired Carroll McEntee & McGinley (now HSBC
Securities (USA) Inc.), a New York-based primary dealer in US government securities.

In 1986 The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation established Hongkong Bank
of Australia Limited (now HSBC Bank Australia Limited) and acquired James Capel &
Co. Limited, a leading London-based international securities company.

In 1987, The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation acquired the remaining
shares of Marine Midland and a 14.9% equity interest in Midland Bank.

The acquisition in July 1992 of Midland Bank in the United Kingdom created one of the
largest banking and financial services organizations in the world. Midland was founded
in 1836 in Birmingham and had grown in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries through
a series of mergers and amalgamations. In 1974 Midland acquired the London merchant
bank of Samuel Montagu, whose own distinguished history stretches back to 1853.

The 1990s have seen further expansion and consolidation of the various businesses of the
HSBC Group. In the United States, a joint venture, the Wells Fargo HSBC Trade Bank
was formed in 1995. Elsewhere in the Americas in 1997, a new subsidiary Banco HSBC
Bamerindus was established in Brazil; the acquisition of the Roberts Group (now called
HSBC Bank Argentina SA) in Argentina was completed, and a 19.9% interest in
Mexico's Grupo Financiero Serfin was completed.

In 1999, HSBC Holdings plc signed a memorandum of understanding with the


Government of Korea for the acquisition of a controlling Seoul Bank, one of the largest
commercial banks in South Korea.

HSBC and Merrill Lynch formed a joint venture to launch the first international online
banking and investment services company in 2000. HSBC acquired CCF (Credit
Commercial de France), one of France’s largest banks. Shares in HSBC Holdings are
listed on a fourth stock exchange, in Paris. HSBC acquired Chase Manhattan’s branches

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in Panama. The Group increased its shareholding in Egyptian British Bank to over 90%
and had since renamed it HSBC Bank Egypt S.A.E. PCIB Savings Bank in the
Philippines was purchased and renamed HSBC Savings Bank (Philippines) Inc.

In 2001, HSBC acquired the branches and fund Management Company of the Barclays
Bank in Greece; IRB Finance Berhad, a finance company in Brunei; and Intermediarios
Financieros, Agenda de Valores y Bolsa, S.A., a Spanish retail stock broking company.
CCF purchased Banque Hervet, a regional bank in France. HSBC acquired a controlling
interest in China Securities Investment Trust Corporation, Taiwan’s leading asset
management company; and initiated discussions to complete its purchase of Demirbank
TAS, Turkey’s fifth largest private bank.

Banks under the HSBC group:


Many of the members have changed their name into HSBC, The Hongkong and Shanghai
Banking Corporation Limited to introduce the whole group under one brand name.

Midland Bank, one of the principal UK clearing banks, was acquired by HSBC Holdings
in 1992. Headquartered in London, the bank has a personal customer base of five and a
half million, business customers of over half a million, and a network of almost 1,700
branches in the United Kingdom. Midland has offices in 28 countries and territories,
principally in continental Europe, with a number of offices in Latin America.

Hang Seng Bank, in which Hongkong Bank has a 62.1% equity interest, maintains a
network of 146 branches in the Hong Kong SAR, where it is the second-largest locally
incorporated bank after Hongkong Bank. Hang Seng Bank also has a branch in Singapore
and two branches and two representative offices in China.

Marine Midland Bank, headquartered in Buffalo, New York, has 380 banking locations
state-wide. The bank serves over two million personal customers and 120,000
commercial and institutional customers in New York State and, in selected businesses,
throughout the United States.

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Hongkong Bank of Canada is the largest foreign-owned bank in Canada and the
country’s seventh-largest bank. With headquarters in Vancouver, it has 116 branches
across Canada and two branches in the western United States.

Banco HSBC Bamerindus was established in Brazil in 1997. The bank has its head office
in Curitibank and a network of some 1,900 branches and sub-branches, the second largest
in Brazil.

Hongkong Bank Malaysia is the largest foreign-owned bank in Malaysia and the
country’s fifth-largest bank, with 36 branches.

The British Bank of the Middle East (British Bank) is the largest and most widely
represented international bank in the Middle East, with 31 branches throughout the
United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestinian
Autonomous Area, including an offshore banking unit in Bahrain. The bank also has
branches in Mumbai and Trivandrum, India, and Baku, Azerbaijan, as well as private
banking operations in London and Geneva.

HSBC Banco Roberts was acquired in 1997. Based in Buenos Aires, it is one of
Argentina’s largest privately owned banks, with 60 branches throughout the country.

Hongkong Bank of Australia has 16 branches across Australia. It is the flagship of the
HSBC Group’s businesses there, operating under the name HSBC Australia, and
providing a complete range of financial services.

The Saudi British Bank, a 40%-owned member of the HSBC Group, has 63 branches
throughout Saudi Arabia and a branch in London.

Other associated Group banks are British Arab Commercial Bank, The Cyprus Popular
Bank and Egyptian British Bank. Wells Fargo HSBC Trade Bank is a San Francisco-
based joint venture between HSBC and Wells Fargo Bank, providing trade finance and

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international banking services in the United States through its offices in five western
states and in conjunction with Wells Fargo’s 32 regional commercial banking offices in
10 western states. In addition, the Group has a non-equity strategic alliance with Wells
Fargo Bank, which provides access to a wide range of banking services through that
bank’s more than 1,900 staffed outlets. The Group also has a non-equity alliance with
Wachovia Corporation, one of the leading corporate banks in the United States, with
business relationships in 50 states.

HSBC Vision Statement:


“We aim to satisfy our customers with high quality service that reflects our global image
as the premier international bank”

Objectives of HSBC:
To beat the mean Total Shareholder Return performance of a peer group of financial
institutions over a three-year rolling average, with a minimum objective to double
shareholder return value in five years.

HSBC’s objectives are to provide innovative products supported by quality delivery of


systems and excellence customer services, to train and motivate staffs and to exercise
social responsibility. By combining regional strengths with group network HSBC’s aim is
to be one of the leading banks in its principle markets. HSBC’s goal is to achieve
sustained earnings growth and to continue to enhance shareholders’ value.

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Overview of HSBC Bangladesh

HSBC Asia Pacific group represents HSBC in Bangladesh. HSBC opened its first branch
in Dhaka on 17th December, 1996 to provide personal banking services, trade and
corporate services, and custody services. The Bank was awarded ISO9002 accreditation
for its personal and business banking services, which cover trade services, securities and
safe custody, corporate banking, Hexagon and all personal banking. This ISO9002
designation is the first of its kind for a bank in Bangladesh. The Hong Kong and
Shanghai Banking Corporation Bangladesh Ltd. primarily limited its operations to help
garments industry and to commercial banking. Latter, it extended to pharmaceuticals, jute
and consumer products. Other services include cash management, treasury, securities,
and custodial service.

Realizing the huge potential and growth in personal banking industry in Bangladesh,
HSBC extended its operation to the personal banking sector in Bangladesh and within a
very short span of time it was able to build up a huge client base. Extending its operation
further, HSBC opened a branch at Chittagong, three branch offices at Dhaka (Gulshan,
Motijheel and Dhanmondi) and an offshore banking unit on November 1998.

HSBC Bangladesh is under strict supervision of HSBC Asia Pacific Group, Hong Kong.
The Chief Executive Officer of HSBC Bangladesh manages the whole banking operation
of HSBC in Bangladesh. Under the CEO there are heads of departments who manage
specific banking functions e.g. Personal banking, corporate banking, etc.

Currently HSBC Bangladesh is providing a wide range of services to both individual and
corporate level customers. In the year 2000, the bank launched a wide array of personal
banking products designed for all kinds of (middle and higher-middle income) individual
customers. Some such products were Personal loans, car loans, etc. Recently the bank
launched three of its personal banking products – Tax loan, Personal secured loan &
Automated Tele Banking (ATB) service. These products are designed to meet the diverse
customer needs more completely.

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HSBC in Bangladesh also specializes in self-service banking through providing 24-hour
ATM services. Recently it has introduced Day & Night banking by installing Easy-pay
machines in Banani, Uttara and Dhanmondi to better satisfy the needs of both customers
and non-customers. In total HSBC currently has 13 ATM’s (6 on-site & 7 offsite) in
Dhaka.

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2.0 Description of Duties and Requirements of Job

2.1 Type of duties performed:

My work was mostly related to delivering items like ATM cards, PINs, Bonds and
certificates etc to the customers at the delivery counter. However, there were other tasks
that I was asked to do after customer service hours such as reconciling the ATM cards
and PINs and sending them into the vault, writing service charges on debit slips,
preparing solvency certificates and revising the account opening forms.

Greeting customers gives a prologue of one’s upcoming service that he or she will be
giving to the customers. The first and foremost duty that I was assigned to do was to greet
the customers and ask them what I could do for them. Then I had to lead them to the
counter where they could avail their desired services. The whole idea of doing this was
just to bridge in a smooth relationship between the customer and the service provider.

Interns are normally asked to work at the delivery counter. There, I had to deliver ATM
cards that got retained in the Automated Teller Machines and also the PIN numbers that
the customers needed to use their cards. Normally, the cards that got captured by the
branch’s ATMs were kept by the branch but the one’s that were taken in by the machines
of off-shore ATM booth’s were taken to NSC. NSC then would send the ATM cards to
the home branches of the account holders. Our job was to receive the retained cards and
deliver them to the customers when they come to collect them.

Speaking of NSC, I will briefly discuss the functions of NSC. NSC stands for Network
Services Centre and is often called the “Power House of HSBC Bangladesh” by the
employees of the bank. This department does the back office job for the bank. Jobs
performed by this department are issuing ATM cards and PIN codes, receiving ATM
cards from the off-shore booths and sending them to the respective branches, clearing and
scanning of signature cards, issuing checkbooks, sending and receiving bonds and
remittances. New ATM cards are normally sent to the account holders’ corresponding

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addresses while the PINs are sent to the home branches for customer collection. Both
ATM and PIN codes are never sent to the same place since they might fall into the wrong
hands. NSC looks after the clearing processes of HSBC and makes necessary contact
with the central bank for maintaining account flows. All the customers’ signatures are
scanned in this department and are entered into the system. NSC also issues cheque
books for new and old accounts based on requisition from various branches. Bonds are
bought and en-cashed by NSC from the Bangladesh Bank. ‘Remittance’ is a banking
term, which means ‘Transfer of funds through banks’. When a bank remits on behalf of
its customers, it is termed as outward remittance. On the other hand, when the bank
receives the remittance on behalf of the customer, it is inward remittance. The following
are the methods that NSC uses to remit money for customers: Telegraphic Transfer (TT),
Demand Draft (DD) and Cashier’s Order.

Having discussed the work of NSC, I will move forward to the next task that I was
assigned to do at the delivery counter during the customer hours besides delivering ATM
cards and PIN codes. At the delivery counter, I had to deliver bonds that were purchased
by the customers. A Bond is simply an “IOU” in which an investor agrees to loan money
to a company or government in exchange for a predetermined interest rate. When a
customer wished to buy a bond from HSBC, he/she had to fill up a bond purchasing form
and sign them. The forms were then sent to NSC for processing. The bonds department of
NSC then deducted money from the account holder’s account and then bought bonds
from the central bank. The central bank issued slip for the customer and sent them to
NSC. NSC then sent the bond slips to the respective branches for customer collection.
Being an intern HSBC, Gulshan branch, I had to receive those bond slips from NSC and
file them. Once a customer came to collect his/her slip, I took their signatures in our bond
register, got it verified by a customer service officer, and then handed the bond over to
the customer.

Other services I had to provide to the customers during the office hours were delivering
bank statements, bank solvency certificates, facility offer letters, loan certificates and
loan clearance letters etc. Usually bank solvency certificates were prepared by us in the

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branch but the other documents were normally issued by the credit department and were
sent to us for customer collection.

These were the basic task I was given to do during the office hours which started from
9:00am to 3:00pm. After the office hours, I had to collect ATM cards and duplicate PIN
request forms from the customer service relationship officers and send them to NSC for
issuance of new ATM cards and PIN codes. I also sent the bond purchase or encashment
forms to NSC for further processing.

The next task that I had to do after the customer service hours was to reconcile the
retained ATM cards and PINs. First, I had to count the ATM cards and PINs, and then I
had to destroy the ATM cards and PINs if they crossed the retention period. Due to
security reasons, bank normally kept the ATM cards for 14 days and PINs for 30 days
and when the retention period passed away, these items were destroyed. Every file had
tracker lists where I had to jot down the opening balance, the number of items received
on that particular day, the number of cards or PINs that were delivered that day, the
number of cards and PINS that were destroyed on that day and finally the closing
balance. The closing balance was calculated by adding the number of items received with
the opening balance and deducting the number of items delivered and destroyed from the
total. The closing balance should match with the number of physical number of ATM
cards and PINs each folder held. After reconciliation, a customer-service relationship
officer (CSR) would sign the tracker every day and have it again verified by the
customer-service relationship manager (CRM).

After reconciliation, I had to make daily charges of bank statements, solvency certificates
and duplicate pins that were applied for by the customers. I wrote each charge in different
debit slips and handed it over to the CSR and CRM to put their initials on them. These
slips were then sent to the cashier to deduct money from the respective accounts.

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Having made the charges, my next job was to prepare bank solvency certificates for the
customers who applied for them on that particular day. We take one day to prepare a
certificate. Hence, the customer who applies for a certificate can collect it the following
working day.

Once the certificates are done, I had to help the other CSRs to prepare the account
opening forms. Once the forms are prepared, I had to list them in a sales tracker sheet and
send the forms along with the tracker to NSC for further work to be done on them.

These were the daily-routine tasks I was assigned to do during the days of my internship
at HSBC.

2.2 Decisions I have been asked to make, or helped to make

At such a preliminary stage of career, I believe I knew very little of the art to make
decisions. However, everyone in the bank tended to work as a team and was open to
opinions from anybody and everybody. I was always asked if I wanted to share my own
point of views about certain matters that were related to my duties.

2.3 Evaluation of my performance of assigned tasks

When it came to evaluating my job performance, all I could say is that I gave my 100
percent to what I did. I had a tendency to make sure that everything was done correctly,
however in that process I figured out that I was very shaky and asked somebody else to
check my work for me. I realized I lacked confidence. One of my colleagues told to me to
overcome the fear and to try to do things on my own. Finally, I could overcome this
problem by having faith in myself and being less dependable on others. This is something
I would take with me all throughout my life from HBSC- my self-confidence.

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2.4 Assessment of the level of responsibility given to me by my supervisor

Being a part of the bank meant carrying out individual assigned responsibilities but being
an intern and new to the bank, I think I was given hefty amounts of responsibilities to
carry out. Given the list of work I mentioned earlier, and then helping the CSRs to
prepare account packets, I think I had to carry out too many responsibilities. This acted as
a major drawback for my report as I always had to come back home really late in the
evenings. However, the tremendous workload and the varied range of tasks has also
taught me to deal with multi – tasking.

2.5 Problems I had encountered in handling tasks or jobs assigned

I did not encounter much of a problem or any sort of hardship doing any of my routine
tasks. The first month of my internship, I spent ample time learning the tasks by heart.
From the second month, I got a hold of it and could do my work smoothly. Nonetheless
insignificant problems did arise when dealing with the customers but it was not very hard
to tackle them. One of the encounters was faulty cards and hence angry customers.
Lately, the ATMs of HSBC were not working properly. Most probably the magnetic strip
readers of these machines were not functioning well. Due to this reason, the ATM cards,
when punched into the machines, became faulty and were rejected by the ATMs.
Customers could not use these faulty cards anymore.

When these customers found out that it was the machines’ faults, they were furious. Even
though we did not claim any charge for replacing faulty cards with new ones, most of
them were left fuming when we told them that they would get their new cards after seven
working days. Convincing these customers and cooling them down after this service
failure was not easy but we could still calm them down at the end.

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The bank was very concerned about the machines and took actions in order to settle this
issue. Arrangements had been made to fix the machines. Recently the number of faulty
cards had also reduced from what we received when the problem had emerged.

2.6 Competencies and skills acquired on the job

Skills that I have acquired from this internship are ability to interact with customers,
ability to work in a team, ability to meet deadlines and doing work correctly at the same
time.

I’m a shy person in nature. At first when I was asked to greet the customers, I felt uneasy.
As the time went by, I overcame my shyness and could interact with customers easily and
that also with a lot of confidence. One of my colleagues even told me that I had the
ability to tailor my art of interaction with different people according to their way of
talking. She pointed out that this helped the customer to understand what I was trying to
tell him/her.

Since this was the first time I got engaged in the corporate world, I did not know how
they worked altogether. But now I can tell what team work means since I have seen
everyone in the bank work as a team. I have also earned the ability to work in a team.

Working in a bank meant meeting deadlines. Everyone in the bank made sure that the day
to day work was done on time and nothing was kept pending for the next day. This
helped me learn to work within a set time limit and meet the deadline. Now I know how
to finish work on time and be correct at the same time.

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3.0 What I have learned about the organization

3.1 How has my supervisor assisted me in learning tasks or jobs assigned:

Pertaining to the customer services department under which I’ve served, my key tasks
and responsibilities included basic procedures under the banking system such as
reconciliation, preparation of account packets, certification, delivery services etc. From
my experience the key factors which I have observed that the banking facility offers a
wide range of services to clients, so the emphasis on sales and customer service
associates to ensure the public is aware of all aspects of the banking facility is quite high.
Sales and customer service professionals meet with clients, suggest possible services to
assist their clients, answer questions, and handle all preparations for customers to begin
receiving services. Wonderful people skills are necessary for success in these positions.

For a company such as HSBC being both the world's largest banking group and the
world's 6th largest company I have observed that the essential aspect contributing to their
success has been the company’s image and it’s “act of professionalism”. The essence of
loyalty, commitment and hard work by employees is strong throughout the employees’
structure because of the company’s reputation and recognition. Sustaining the image of
the company plays a crucial role amongst the employees. Therefore even as an intern I
have had to endure painful amounts of work pressure from over whelming number of
customers ensuring quality customer services.

First one or two days, I was shown how to do the tasks that I was assigned but after that I
was left on my own to practice my tasks and gain skills at the same time. The liberal and
at the same time strict supervision I have served under has helped me to learn and catch
up with the process in a very short period of time. I have learned that adjusting to the
very dynamic and strenuous nature of the business is vital.

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3.2 Outline of the job responsibilities held by others working at the customer service
department

There were several job responsibilities held by the Customer Service Representatives
(CSR) working in the same unit where I was working. They had to sell as well as provide
customers with necessary banking services. They also had to give efforts to understand
the customers better and act as informers to the higher-authority and give them required
information about the customers.

They had to meet up with the set assets and liability targets and sell bank’s product to
existing and new customers. They had to try to minimize deposit attrition and discourage
early settlement of loan. Excellent customer service had to be ensured by them by
executing customer requests. Prompt actions upon customer request such as opening
accounts with proper documentation, fund transfer, depositing cheques, issuing account
balance, duplicate statement, solvency/balance confirmation, standing instructions, stop-
lost cheques, issuing counter cheques, product information etc had to be undertaken by
them.

Building relationships with the customers is the vital task the CSRs had to perform. Any
complaints placed by the customers had to be solved by these front-liners. From my
observation, I’ve seen that they always tried to solve the issues themselves rather than
taking the complaints to their superiors. In this way, the customers were also pleased
since the CSRs tried to take prompt actions without taking much time talking to other
colleagues in order to solve problems.

Talking of having a good customer relationship reminds me of the “My Individual


Review”. This is a simple yet smart technique to know the customers better. My
Individual review is simply a questionnaire that is filled up by the CSRs by taking their
customers’ interviews. This helps them to learn about the customers in depth and pro-
actively offer suitable products before the customers even had to ask for them. Being a

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student of marketing this tool fascinated me because only a smart marketer would offer
products before the customer even realizes the need for it.

The works of these CSRs are rated by the mystery shoppers. HSBC has its own technique
of evaluating the performances of employees by visiting their work stations acting as if
they are the customers. The idea of mystery shopping is to ensure that the service of
HSBC is maintained. Any mistake made by any of the employees is noted down by the
mystery shoppers and later, these employees are informed of their mistakes so that they
don’t reoccur in the future.

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4.0 Opportunities for cooperation

4.1 Duties requiring teamwork

HSBC has a reputation of having friendly work environment where everybody treats each
other equally and with great respect. They have a tendency to work as a team. When
needed, even I also received assistance from my senior colleagues and whenever I faced a
problem, they were there to help me out.

However, there were tasks in which if I got a helping hand, I could have done them
faster. For instance, tasks like PIN reconciliation are very easy but it takes a lot of time
to count them and then destroy the ones that passes the retention period. Several steps are
taken to reconcile these security items. Had there been somebody to help, then I could
have done the whole process of reconciliation in much lesser time than what it took me to
do the job.

HSBC, Gulshan branch is a very busy branch unlike a few other branches as it is situated
in one of the busiest locations in Dhaka city. Giving services to the customers and then
doing the follow ups after the customer service hours, has put a lot of pressure on the
CSRs. Almost everyday the employees have to stay at work till late evenings. This has
led to slight frustrations in the employees. They are not happy with the long hours of
work and often complain. In my opinion, few more employees should be hired to ease out
the work load that has been imposed on these employees.

4.2 Aid from employer and other employees in learning skills

When it came to learning new skills, everybody was there to help me out. My supervisor
would explain my work to me with great emphasis. This had helped me a lot in learning
my job better. If I did not understand any aspect of my work, he was always there to
teach me all over again and that also with kindness. This showed that the bank not only
treated its customer as “customers” but also its employees as customers too.

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5.0 Supervision of duties

Approach used by the supervisor to let me know of his appraisal of my performance


on the job:

Whenever there was a heavy work load, my supervisor would come and see if I am being
able to cope with the pressure or not. Once he saw that I was successful, he would say
things like “well done” or “thank you”. While filling up the evaluation form that was
sent by my university, he told me that he was satisfied seeing the way I took the work
pressure during the time when around six hundred salary accounts were opened in about
one week. He had even let me see the evaluation form once he was done filling it up
because he wanted me to know myself. This was probably another way of showing me
his assessment.

Only two days before my internship ended, my supervisor told me that the Gulshan
Branch of HSBC is a very busy branch and since I have worked here, I am ready to face
any challenge in the future. To hear something like that was quite encouraging for me.

Another way by which my supervisor showed me his appraisal was by smiling or


nodding. Whenever he saw me dealing with my customers and providing them with good
service, he would gently nod and smile. Seeing his smile, I could tell that he was content
with my customer service.

Not only my supervisor but my other senior colleagues would also show their appraisals
if I worked with them for long hours or did something they had asked me to do. HSBC
has a tradition of saying “thank you” to a colleague if he/she did something commendable
and with me also they maintained this practice.

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6.0 Conclusion

Working in an organization like HSBC is like a dream come true. I feel honored to have
been blessed with such a valuable opportunity. Now I know how to be organized and do
things systematically. Taking care of the security items such as ATM cards, PINS and
Bonds; corresponding with other branches by sending mails and keeping a track of those
mails, making sure that all my work procedures went smoothly have made me a much
more organized person than what I used to be. Moreover, dealing with such valued
customers have also helped me improve my interaction skills and helped me gain
confidence. Being in such a friendly work environment with so many helpful colleagues
has helped me learn how to work in a team. It was indeed a pleasure doing my internship
in HSBC.

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7.0 REFERENCES

ƒ Secondary data
I have elaborated different types of secondary data in my research. Sources of
secondary information can be defined as follows:

Internal Sources

‰ Prior research report


‰ Group Business Principal manual
‰ Group Instruction Manual & Business Instruction Manual
‰ Bank's Annual Report.
‰ Any information regarding the Banking sector

ƒ http://beginnersinvest.about.com/cs/bondbasics/f/whatisabond.htm

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