INTRODUCTION I which led to the hypotheses outlined about

                     

 

INTRODUCTION

 

In modern competitive environments,
services are gaining gradually more importance in the competitive formula of
both firms and countries. Globalised competition has hassled the strategic
importance of satisfaction, quality and consequently loyalty, in the combat for
winning consumer preferences and maintaining sustainable competitive
advantages. Since the customers have more number of choices and control, long
lasting and strong relationships with them are vital to achieve and maintain
competitive advantages. In today’s business environment, the commercial banks
face growing competition from new players, including global banks and
alternative sources of funds. Moreover, the increasing competitive environment existing
in the global market and fast advances in customer intelligence, technologies
have led retail banks to look for new business and marketing models for
realizing intelligence-driven customer transactions and experiences.

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In this context, the
present study was conducted in Coimbatore district with the sample size of 500 customers
from 25 branches of 8 commercial banks. The research sparked off by research
objectives in Chapter I which led to the hypotheses outlined about the
perception of customers towards retail banking of the commercial banks. The
methodology followed and the reviews of previous studies are presented in
Chapter I and brief descriptions of the retail banking services rendered by the
select commercial banks are discussed in Chapter II. Customers’ perception and
opinion towards retail banking services are discussed in Chapter III. Levels of
customers’ awareness in retail banking services are discussed in Chapter IV.
Levels of customers’ satisfaction in retail banking services are discussed in
Chapter V. In this chapter, the main findings of the study are summarized, the
problems encountered are mentioned, recommendations are made and scope for the
future studies is outlined.

MAJOR FINDINGS OF THE
STUDY

The
major findings observed from the study have been summarized below:      

1.     
It is found from the analysis that male
customers outnumbered the female customers in all the three types of banks
taken for the study. The proportion of male customers in private sector banks
(73.5 percent) was higher than that of nationalized banks (68.2 percent). It
reveals that private sector banks have attracted more male customers than the
nationalized banks while female customers have been impressed more by
nationalized banks.

 

2.     
Most of the respondents are in the age
group of 21 to 30 years and they have entered into the job after their
education and it is observed that the age is not a bar for having a savings or
current account in both banks.

 

3.     
The major proportion of customers of
banks in Coimbatore district are unmarried because they belong to the age group
of 21 to 30 years and it is evinced that there is significant relationship
between marital status of the respondents and type of account.

 

4.     
Majority of the respondents are having
education background (Graduate or Post graduate). But it is noted that there is
no significant relationship between educational qualification of the
respondents and type of account.

 

5.      It
is observed that the higher proportion of customers of nationalized banks (40.8
percent) was employed and in case of private sector banks the higher proportion
of customers (46.2 percent) were engaged in business / profession. This infers
that there is a relationship between occupation of the respondents and type of
account.      

 

6.     
More 
number  of  the 
respondents  are  having 
monthly  income  of  up  to Rs. 10000 per month in nationalized banks
whereas in case of private sector banks majority of respondents having monthly
income of Rs. 10001 to    Rs. 20000 and
it is not influenced by the nature of account.

7.     
The higher proportion of customers in
both nationalized and private sector banks had 3 to 4 members in their family.
It is understood that size of family of the respondents is not a matter for
opening current account or savings account.

 

8.     
Most of the respondents either male or
female are having savings account. This infers that there is no significant
relationship between gender of the respondents and type of account.

 

9.     
From the analysis it is found that
maximum numbers of respondents were customers of these banks for less than 5
years and it is concluded that there is a connection between period of
customership and ownership pattern of bank.

 

10.  Most
of the respondents may know the banks out of their self knowledge. But there is
no significant relationship between source of awareness and ownership pattern
of bank.

 

11. 
It is identified that there is a
significant relationship between selection of bank and ownership pattern of
bank because majority of respondents select the bank which is proximity to home.

 

12. 
It is observed from the analysis, that
more number of the respondents has their saving accounts in nationalized banks
but they have not availed cheque book facility and it is also concluded that
there is a significant relationship between utilization of cheque facility and
ownership pattern of bank.

 

13. 
Most of the respondents are having their
accounts in nationalized banks and they have not make use of the cheque
facility and large numbers of the respondents of private sector banks have got
the cheque book on the same day itself. It reveals that there is a significant
relationship between time taken for getting cheque book and ownership pattern
of bank.

14. 
It denotes that respondents of both
nationalized and private banks have not availed loan facility. It is found from
the analysis that maximum number of the respondents have got educational loan
and this is due to that most of the respondents have savings account. Most of
the respondents did not have availed any loan and they did not face any
problem, but out of those who have availed the loan, majority of the
respondents deprived due to insufficient income. It is concluded that there is
a significant relationship between nature of problem faced by customers in
getting loan sanctioned and ownership pattern of bank.

 

15.  In
the research study, when the respondents were asked to rank the level of their satisfaction
towards features of loan based on the amount of loan sanctioned, , rate of
interest, security for the loan, period of loan, statutory norms, formality to
avail loan, processing time and other features have been selected as the
features of loan. Most of the respondents reveal that the amount of loan
sanctioned has been the most influencing feature of loans for the sample
respondents with an average score of 3.83. The features of loan like rate of
interest, formality to avail loan, processing time, statutory norms and other
features have been considered to be least influencing.

 

16. 
It is found from the analysis that out
of 500 respondents, the majority of respondents (266) used banking services as
and when needed. About 395 sample respondents out of 500 respondents stated
that they were aware of cash withdrawal facility in ATM and they have been
using the same. About 374 respondents out of total sample respondents mentioned
that they were aware and use balance enquiry and more than a half (282
respondents) aware and use the mini statement. It denotes that frequency of
utilization of retail banking services has influenced the awareness on balance
enquiry facility, cash withdrawal and mini statement. It is also revealed from
the analysis that a greater proportion of 280 out of 500 respondents were not
aware of cheque deposit facility, 296 out of 500 respondents were not aware of
cash deposit facility, 319 among the total respondents were not aware of the
facilities of transfer of funds, 334 out of 500 respondents were not aware
about the cheque book request facility in ATM. 13 out of 500 respondents use cheque
status enquiry , 7 out of 500 respondents use stop payment request  and 6 out 500 respondents use bill payment
presentment   respectively. It is thus concluded that there
is a significant relationship between frequency of operation and awareness on
various retail banking facilities in ATM.

 

17. 
From Garrett’s Ranking technique, it is
clear that convenient bank location  –
rank I, safety locker facility – rank II and safety measures have been the most
vital facilities which have been liked by the bank customers while others have
been given least importance by the bank customers.

 

18. 
According to Garrett’s Ranking
Technique, it is concluded that bank customers have give least importance to
the e-banking facilities like electronic clearing service (42.80 percent) and
usage of computers and other modern technology (43.65 percent). While facilities
like ATM facility (61.81percent) and credit card/debit card facility (51.35
percent) have attracted the customers more than other facilities.

 

19. 
Perceptions of respondents towards
employees’ behavior on banking services are good in private sector banks when
compared to nationalized banks. But it is moderate in nationalized banks.

 

20. 
On the basis of ANOVA it is clearly
observed that there is a significant relationship between frequency of
operations and opinion of customers towards service charges while factors like
ownership pattern of bank, period of customership and type of account are
correlated with the service charges.

 

21.
From the analysis it is noted that
factors like gender and size of family have no significant relationship with
their level of awareness on retail banking services. While
other demographic factors such as age, occupation, monthly income, educational qualification,
marital status, ownership pattern, period of customership and frequency of
operation have significant association with their level of awareness on retail
banking services.

 

22. 
It is clearly observed from the analysis
that there is a significant relationship between ownership pattern of bank and
age of respondents, monthly income of the respondents and their level of
satisfaction towards retail banking services, while demographic factors like marital
status, gender of respondents, occupation, educational qualification, size of
family and period of customers are not significantly related with the level of
satisfaction towards retail banking services.

 

SUGGESTIONS

 

1.     
The public sector banks don’t issue
cheque book on the day of opening the account as contrary to private sector
banks. Therefore, it is suggested that the public sector banks should take
initiatives to issue cheque book on the day of opening the accounts.

 

2.     
Banks should provide loans at the lower
interest rate. The education loans should be given with ease with minimum
documentation. The practices followed in issuing education loan should match
the policy practices declared by the government.

 

3.     
It is found that customers are satisfied
with the loan amount and not with features of loan. Thus, it requires that the
banks should relax features of loan to curb the cumbersome procedures.

 

4.  Customers generally complain that full
knowledge is not provided to them. Therefore, banks should appoint an executive
exclusively in every main branch, where utilization of more high – tech
services is possible, to guide, explain and make aware of these services to
customers who are already using he facilities and those who don’t.

 

5.     
On the basis of findings it is suggested
that the bank should concentrate to provide facilities like adequacy of space,
uninterrupted services rendered and indication of display boards to the
customers. The bank employees should be provided with good education on counter
operations. So that, they are able to provide quicker services without delay.

 

6.     
The technology driven services with
hi-tech facilities of electronic fund transfer and electronic mail services
should be effectively introduced to the customers. The customers need to be
informed about the type of forms used for each transaction and to make
enquiries and to redress their complaints. Training programmes should be
devised for all the staff in such a way that the staff and customers
relationship to be improved through communication skill to be imparted in such
training programmes.

 

7.     
A specific and appropriate programme is
to be formulated and introduced to educate the households, agriculture
customers, illiterate customers and aged persons about how to use the retail
banking services.

 

8.     
From the study, it is understood that
the banks have not given any importance for the space in the banks. The space
for movement, writing, waiting queries is to be provided adequately and
properly.

 

9.      It
is suggested that customers should be educated through specific interactions,
Audio and Video Programmes in local languages regarding the information about
how various Retail Banking Services are rendered and used to spread awareness
and persuade the customers of the remote villages.

 

10. 
The banks need to improve their retail
banking business through ATM service by increasing their withdrawal limit, new
ATM locations and issuing debit cards promptly. It is also suggested that Banks
should take the ATMs to rural areas so as to increase their services to the
village people.

 

 

11. 
The customers should be encouraged by
the way of rewards, prizes, etc., for using more and more Retail Banking
Services.

 

12. 
The banks that offer Retail Banking
Services should design the advertising campaign by taking into account the
customer opinion on Retail Banking Services as environmental friendly and
faithful to the other customers who are not aware of the Retail Banking
Services.

 

13. 
The Banks should improve the quality of
the Retail Banking Services that will attract the other customers of the banks
too.

 

14. 
Banks should allow the existing
facilities to sink into the culture of the customers before any new facilities
are launched. Also, the existing facilities should be embedded with services so
that customers not only appreciate new technology, but are also in a position
to operate.

 

15.
The banks require hiring right kind of
people, with adequate knowledge of Retail banking services especially at banks
call centers. The marketing personnel selected by direct
sales executives of banks should be fully qualified, in terms of education,
retail product knowledge, communication skills etc., and they are well versed
with local language.

 

16. 
It is necessary for banks to motivate
customers by satisfying them through well organized efforts, especially by
providing confidence that the working and products of retail banking are highly
useful for the customers.

 

17. 
In order to have confidence of customers,
the banks have to consciously cultivate the habit of treating their customer as
king. This would include provision of more and more customized services that
are tailor-made to suit their individual needs.

 

18. 
The more products that a customer has
with the bank, the cheaper it is to serve them per product, and it is more
difficult for the customer to switch to another bank. Therefore the bankers
should diversify their services to provide more products to the customers.

 

19. 
The banks by using modern high – tech
telecommunications should introduce new ways for consumers to access their
account balances, transfer of funds, pay bills, and buy goods and services
without using cash, mailing a check, or leaving home.

 

20. 
In order to win the confidence and
support of the customers, the banks should ensure the personal safety of
customers while utilizing the services provided by the bank. This includes the
maintenance of confidentiality about the customer information and his/her
account details etc.

 

21.  The
banks must get customers’ feedback. This is not only beneficial to the
customers but also to the bank with valuable information for improvements and
future development on retail service.

 

22.  Banks
need to develop their Retail services so that their service will not be out of
date and thus avoid customer choose other banks’ services which are better
developed and modern. Banks need to recognize the potential of new innovation
and utilize them, besides implementing new innovations, it is important that
banks also develop their services and to personalize even further in order to
satisfy their customers. The banks have to meet the needs of customers and
continuously improve their ability to do so.

 

23. 
In case of opening bank account or
accessing any banking transaction, bio-metric system may be introduced.

 

24. 
There may be chances for submitting
duplicate Identity card and fake photos while opening bank account. In order to
overcome these issues, photos and signatures may be taken at the time of
account opening in the bank itself as the system which is followed in Regional
transport office and Election office.

 

25. 
In order to verify the authenticity of
photo and Identity card banks may be permitted to access central server data
base.

 

CONCLUSION

 

Retail banking has been commenced in the
Indian banking sector in recent years. Customers of Indian commercial banks are
reacting to a greater extent to this new banking strategy. Nowadays, banks are
in a fluctuating business environment as they experience an increase in
competition and in customer demand, and a decrease in profit margins. Hence, it
is decisive for banking practitioners to spotlight on a differentiated
strategy, known as service quality improvement, to strengthen their core
competitive edge, and urgently make a decision to focus on either the area of
personnel counter services or electronic services or both, to be able to
allocate limited resources to serve that decision. For banks to grow
organically, a strong commitment to strategic customer growth options must be
articulated through a well-structured approach, designed to improve customer
attitudes toward bank capabilities and assess their potential value. Therefore,
banks must break with traditional, one-sided, inwardly focused customer
initiatives and drive toward a well-balanced, customer focused model to exploit
the potential of its most valuable customers. Further, customer service has
become a significant integral factor of many businesses in order to stay
competitive. A major contribution of this study is the provision of an approach
for managers in retail banks thus enabling them to improve customer
satisfaction and retention rates. Retail banking in India is also practicing a severe
competition as public sector banks, private sector banks and foreign banks are
trying to execute their best to increase their respective market shares.
Therefore, success of leading banks in future will depend on product
innovation, latest technological developments and strategies to tap the
potential retail market. Primarily, a vital factor of retail banking service is
the quality of customer service. The study will provoke the authority concerned
to take some positive measures for improving the standard of retail banking.

 

 

 

 

SCOPE FOR FUTURE
RESEARCH

 

In the present study,
an attempt has been made to examine the awareness, perception and satisfaction
of customers towards retail banking of commercial banks in Coimbatore district.
Based on the experience, a few areas may be suggested for pursuing further
research in future. Although this study covers all aspects of retail banking
services, there may be certain aspects that might have been omitted or that may
become relevant as new trends in banking evolve.   An important future research direction is to study
the overall relationship quality and customer satisfaction in creating customer
loyalty. Future research can be conducted, taking into account how the various
dimensions of service quality, in terms of definition as well as new services
that are offered by the banks.  In
future, customers may reveal new aspects of service quality in retail banking
that are important to them, and these would have to be incorporated in the
scale so as to further explore the concept of service quality in the retail
banking arena. Future investigations should focus on loyalty program, component
analysis, customer loyalty measures, customer attraction and profitability, and
design and costs of loyalty programs. A study may be conducted on the impact of
Liberalization, Privatization and Globalization on retail banking services
rendered by banks. Studies similar to this, if conducted on a large scale at
regular intervals by the researchers and financial intermediaries, will help
the bankers to introduce varied banking services in the forthcoming days.

 

 

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