National Westminster Bank

The purpose of this report is to analyse the case "National Westminster Bank" (David Woodgate and Nigel Slack, 1992), in order to identify any existing and potential problems, then after careful consideration recommend possible courses of action to rectify them. During the review of the organisation described in the case, the key issues will be identified and then related to relevant theory. Analysis will then be made of all relevant factors and recommendations will be made after consideration of all factors.

Overview of the Case The case study to be analysed focuses on the St James's Square branch of the National Westminster Bank in London's West End. The case gives a clear and concise representation of the bank's structure giving detailed descriptions of the all the employees roles and functions and an organisation chart. The focus is then applied to the Records Section and account opening procedure, which is where the problems are found and complaints have been registered.

The results of a survey are summarised in the case to show the apparent level of customer dissatisfaction with the account opening procedure, the importance of such factors are then highlighted with a brief description of the level of competition within the banking industry. The views of are also considered and suggest areas where current systems may be failing the organisation. 2. Problem Key Issues The location of the bank in St James's square is both a blessing and a burden to the organisation.

The sophisticated clientele resulted in the bank being the most profitable in its region, yet they also expected an extremely high level of customer service. This high level of expectation from the customers resulted in any lapses in service being highly scrutinised. The key issues to be addressed within this branch occur in or around the process of opening accounts which is the responsibility of the Records Section, they are as follows:When the five competitive objectives are improved upon they each have an advantageous effect on each factor in turn and adversely, failure in any one of the objectives will be detrimental on the others.

For example; if the Records Section is unable to get personal details right (quality) then procedures will not be carried out on time (dependability) and the speed of operations will be affected. The reduction of operational speed will result in less flexibility in the service which the bank is able to offer, as a result of time constraints Records Section staff will be required to work overtime to the detriment of productivity and ultimately cost. Without a clear operational process then the problems listed above will remain to be issues.

The process of opening accounts, which is vitally important as it is the customer's first impression of the organisation, does not have a clear and concise transformation process and therefore the output of the Records Section will be fundamentally flawed.

Bibliography

  • Gerry Johnson & Kevan Scholes (2002) Exploring Corporate Strategy Sixth Edition. London: Prentice Hall.
  • Henry Mintzberg, James Brian Quinn, & Sumantra Ghoshal (1995) The Strategy Process: European Edition London: Prentice-Hall http://www.bbc.co.uk/news