Bank of America Prepares Customers for an Outage in Service

Posted Friday, February 6, 2015 in Customer Experience by Ronni Marshak

Two days ago, I received a message from Bank of America (where I am a customer). The email subject was, “We are making updates to better serve you.”

Rather than a marketing piece touting their latest and greatest, the email, reprinted below, was simply a notification that, which the bank was doing system updates, some credit card servicing requests may not be accessible and that the online and mobile site might not display the most recent information. It also notes that you may not be able to make credit card payments from Saturday through Sunday of this week.

Rather hidden in the fourth paragraph of the email is the fact that CSRs might also be unable to access the latest information and will “experience similar information delays.”

I am very grateful that BoA sent the email. I often check my credit card account on the weekends, and it is helpful knowing that I might not get a current or complete picture of my account. All too often, customers don’t know that system maintenance or an enhancement is going on until they try to do something online—or through the call center—and are informed that the system is down so the information is unavailable. Sometimes they don’t even get that notification. They just can’t get accurate data or can’t complete a transaction, so they call the contact center which then informs then of the outage…after they have wasted a lot of time.

I do wish, however, that subject line of the email had been more specific. “Making updates to better serve you” doesn’t feel imperative, so lots of customers might not read the message, resulting in frustration, increased volume of calls to customer support, and the aforementioned wasted time. A subject line more like, “Updates to credit card system may result in delays during the week of February 5 to February 11.” That is clear and would entice customers to read the full message for details; it says that things aren’t going to work at full capacity for a specific duration of time; customer could ignore the full contents, but still be informed of the heart of the message.

Still, bravo to BoA for keeping customers informed.

Full contents of the email:

“Thank you for being a valued customer. In order to better serve you, we will be making enhancements to our credit card systems from February 5 to February 11. Your relationship is important to us, and we want you to know what to expect.

Use of your credit card will not be affected. No action is needed on your part as a result of the updates we are making.

While we are updating our systems, certain credit card servicing requests won't be accessible at times and Online and Mobile Banking may not display the most recent information. You may not be able to make or change a payment to your credit card by phone or via Online or Mobile Banking from Saturday, February 7 to Sunday, February 8.

For more information, please log in to Online Banking. Or, if you have questions, call us at the number on your account statement or the back of your credit card. Please know that our customer service representatives will experience similar information delays while we complete these updates.

We appreciate your business and your patience while we work to better serve you.

Maureen Sierocinski
Business Operations Executive”


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