|Best Bank: Barclays|
Botswana is famously one of the richest and most benign countries in Africa, with its small population and large reserves of diamonds. How can a bank make a difference? Barclays, never an immediate first thought when it comes to innovation, has started reaching out to the local community, even opening a branch near the Orapa mine. It is also opening a series of in-store banking branches, putting small-scale offices in large retail stores, and taking the products and services to the customer. The in-store concept and existing branch network will be supported by a state-of-the-art call centre. The centre, which has already enabled the bank to start servicing Barclaycard customers and to reduce costs by removing dependence on a European call centre, will soon make possible extended hours banking services to customers across the country.
In the final months of 2006 the bank started offering a service where it comes to the customer. This might be most people’s nightmare but apparently staff visits to customers at work or home are proving surprisingly popular.