Hands in your pocket…hands in your pocket

I’ve just been reminded of the ING Direct commercial with the little song, “hands in your pocket…hands in your pocket”. Why did this song come to mind? On a recent trip to the Royal Bank of Canada to open up an account I was presented with a booklet outlining all the different ways in which the bank charges you to do business with them. I get dinged for deposits, dinged for withdrawals, dinged for transfers and would you believe I’m even getting dinged when I stand in line and wait to speak with a teller?

That’s right when I take the time out of my day to stand in line to do a transaction with a teller the Royal Bank of Canada charges me for that priviledge. When the account representative told me about this fee I actually laughed and said, “you’re kidding, right?” She looked at me and it was obvious she wasn’t kidding. I turned to her and said, “does this make any sense to you as a human being that when you stand in line and wait to work with an actual person that we should pay for that?”  She was about to explain the banks’ policy and defend their decision to DING their customers for their time when I stopped her and said, “I know you didn’t makde up this policy but seriously this one makes no sense.”

I’m not thrilled about being DINGED by the bank for every transaction I do. Especially automated ones where no actual human being is doing the work. But to get charged for seeing a teller who is usually painfully slow, and to wait in line for long periods of time, just doesn’t make sense to me. You would think the bank would like their customers to come in and interact with the staff. To create a connection with people and be able to offer other services.

So what do you think. If I wait 30 minutes in line to speak with a teller should they charge me less because they wasted my time?Maybe the charge should work on a sliding scale. The faster they serve me the more they get. That certainly would make paying a fee worth my while.

I am seriously sad to see customer service eroding to such a level. I understand that businesses need to make money and fees and charges are part of that process. However, from a customer service stand-point sometimes businesses can just push too far and in this case I have to say that for me, this fee is pushing it. What do you think?