Westpac cuts staff to improve service

Westpac is cutting up to 80 middle management positions as it implements its “Ask Once” customer service improvement program. But the bank says the cuts won't affect customers as they are designed to reduce bureaucracy and “improve accountability for the customer”.

“Ask Once” was introduced in response to a survey in 2002 when it was receiving up to 4,000 complaints every month. Forty per cent of customers said they had to approach the bank more than once to get their issues resolved. “Ask Once” aims to make the bank employee who receives the complaint be the one responsible for finding a solution. A Westpac spokesman said the bank wants to “compete more aggressively on service”.