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18 October 2012

News - Barclays to pay commission on satisfaction

By Ben Turner @ 05:42 :: 1927 Views :: 31 Comments :: Article Rating
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Scandal-hit Barclays (LON:BARC) has announced it is scrapping commission-based sales targets for frontline staff and will pay bonuses purely on customer satisfaction, according to MSN Money.

From December 1, all 18,000 branch and call centre staff will have no commission or incentives based on products sold and bonuses will be based wholly on customers' views about the level of service they receive. Chief executive Antony Jenkins has said the move is part of Barclays' journey towards regaining customers' trust.

The announcement comes after the City watchdog recently said it would look to introduce new rules if the financial sector does not address the use of incentive schemes, which it said were driving staff to mis-sell products in order to receive a bonus.

The industry has already put £10 billion aside to pay back customers who were mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI), in what has become the biggest consumer mis-selling scandal regulators have ever seen.

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has been investigating taxpayer-backed Lloyds Banking Group over huge sales bonuses to frontline staff.

The FSA recently reviewed 22 firms' financial incentive schemes and found that Lloyds' failings were "so serious" that it was referred for further investigation which could ultimately see it face a penalty.

Mr Jenkins said: "The key to Barclays long-term success is the level of service we provide, not how many products we sell. We want customers to choose Barclays because of the great service they receive from us."

The banking industry has also been rocked by a Libor-fixing scandal in recent months and Barclays paid £290 million in June to settle claims that it used underhand tactics to try to rig financial markets.

Last week, the Co-operative Bank also announced it was launching a bonus scheme to reward branch staff solely on customer service. It said it was scrapping sales targets for customer-facing staff altogether and instead staff will have to demonstrate excellent customer service to receive a quarterly reward.

Barclays' announcement was welcomed by consumer group Which?. Chief executive Peter Vicary-Smith said: "Consumers have been let down by the banks for too long. We need to see Big Change in banking now and a return to banks for customers, not bankers."

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