Magazine article American Banker

Electronic Payment Systems Promotes Customer-Satisfaction Guru

Magazine article American Banker

Electronic Payment Systems Promotes Customer-Satisfaction Guru

Article excerpt

To Ruth Ann Marshall, satisfying the customers of an electronic banking network is like conducting an orchestra. The right people have to be in the right chairs to produce harmony.

The sound she wants to hear in her new position at Electronic Payment Services Inc. is that of customer satisfaction.

Ms. Marshall, 43, was promoted in November to executive vice president and group executive of the Wilmington, Del., company. She supervises client relations for both the MAC automated teller network and Buypass, its point of sale affiliate. She fills the post vacated by John F. Beahn, an executive vice president now in charge of pursuing new business.

Ms. Marshall, who supervised client relations at Buypass before her promotion, said her priority "is to replicate the customer satisfaction that we have enjoyed within Buypass across the rest of the business."

"That sounds very simple," she said, "but I believe if you take care of the customer, everything else falls into line."

When Ms. Marshall arrived at Buypass in 1994 after 18 years at International Business Machines Corp., "customer satisfaction was hovering around 50%," she said. At the end of 1997 "over 90% of Buypass customers were satisfied."

Ms. Marshall said she "cleaned house," replacing most of her direct subordinates with experts culled from different industries, and reorganized the staff into specialized groups: account support, project management, and product management.

She also hired more people with marketing experience who could reach out to potential customers like gas stations, supermarkets, and independent sales organizations.

Both MAC and Buypass have grown rapidly in transaction volume. MAC is the largest of the regional networks in terms of transactions through its central switch; they exceeded 105 million ATM transactions and 10 million point of sale transactions a month during the third quarter of 1997. …

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