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ICICI Bank Experiences

Arjun Prabhu’s post on bad experiences with ICICI Bank seems to have resulted in a barrage of opinions, flames and “me-too” comments on ICICI Bank’s apparently glaring lack of customer service fundamentals. There are 242 comments as of now, and this post is #1 on a google search on “ICICI Bank experience“.

I’m not surprised. In their quest to become the top bank in India, organic growth is potentially fraught with over promising and under delivering. Complaints in that post range from NRI money transfer hold ups to Indian customer accounts tacked with arbitrary fees and refused refunds. The modus-operandi seems to be “Confuse your customer”.

A customer center service answered by uninformed, clueless agents.

Tough posturing on money they expect to receive: Thugs to repossess vehicles, threatening letters without supporting documents, requesting money before raising bills.

Raising up their hands when they screw up. They seem to do that with endless procrastination, playing the blame game and passing the buck. This is ridiculous but of course, works for them like a charm.

This is not “Hum hain na”.

This is “Hum Hain?” “Na.”

Note: To those that have complained:

  1. Always make your complaint in writing. Lots of people write on this blog, and call up etc. but that is no way to register a complaint. Write in, FAX it and get an acknowledgement.
  2. Never sign unfilled forms; Someone complained that an agent had ticked a “Premium” account instead of the account they needed, but admitted to having signed a blank form.
  3. Loan complaints and others: visit the Banking Ombudsman site to register a complaint if you think the bank is being unfair.
  4. Don’t complain that you are “forced to have an ICICI account” because your company remits salary there. Jeez. You can get another bank account, and transfer money using a cheque every month. Nobody forces you to use the bank’s other services, for heaven’s sake.
  5. Stay away from oral promises and get EVERYTHING in a written form before you sign anything.

My personal experience: I opened a “three in one” account with ICICI bank four years ago, paying Rs. 750. A year later, I had not used either of the three – Savings, Demat or Trading accounts – and therefore, after a year, asked them to shut down the account (written and oral). They asked me to pay another year’s fees instead; which I promptly refused. They’ve been sending me bills ever since, and I’ve relegated them to the waste paper basket. One day they’ll come for me, I guess – and you’ll see a big blog post that day.

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