Customer Service in CEE

I am currently engaged in a fruitless exchange regarding customer service with Raiffeisen bank here in Czechia. I use this bank exclusively for many services from banking to Government savings to mortgage to FX trades but I have to say that their customer service sucks. The problem is that they don’t appear to know what customer service is. So, having found themselves to offer wonderful services despite my complaint, I volunteered to train anyone, someone from their bank on what I think customer service means. Let’s see how they respond.

Here is what I consider to be poor customer service,

  • Having to argue with their staff over my eligibility to open a certain type of account (I was right, they were wrong meaning poor staff training),
  • Being told by the bank manager that it isn’t HER problem but the BANK’s! (and I should complain – which I did),
  • Having my email correspondence ignored because they do not think I can use Google translate (ie they could only reply in Czech to my Czech inquiry but being a foreigner, they knew I would not understand so why respond at all?),
  • Determining that as the bank was protected in a particular transaction there was nothing they could do to help ME even if I wasn’t protected… ie they only care about themselves.

I could go on.

What they do not seem to understand is that customer service isn’t determining that they do not offer a service and saying so. It is finding out what the customer needs and trying to solve the problem with alternatives. It is about trying to ensure that the customer is getting the best products and services at all times from the bank and meeting with customers periodically to see if there are other solutions available for them. I cannot tell you how many times, I have been rudely informed the product I am using is old and being withdrawn – as if that is MY fault!

All banks are self-serving entities engaged in profiting off customers but Raiffeisen seems blind to the fact that it doesn’t offer customer’s service at all.

2 thoughts on “Customer Service in CEE

  1. So interesting to see that things haven’t changed since we lived in Prague years ago. We had endless runarounds with the banks and also the post office. My solution is to get a stamp, the one that comes with an ink pad. They are very impressed with stamps!


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