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Bank of China intern's experience pays off

Published on Friday, 14 Dec 2012
Suki Kwan
Photo: BOC

This summer, Suki Kwan Shun-yan interned at one of the airport branches of Bank of China (Hong Kong) as an in-branch service ambassador. During the internship, she had to interact with customers from many different countries. She tells Wong Yat-hei that although language was often a barrier, she still tried her best to help them out.

As a reward for her efforts, she was offered a position as a part-time teller at the end of the internship.

What is your academic background?
I have a higher diploma in financial services from the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education, and I am now pursuing a bachelor’s degree in international business management at the City University of Hong Kong’s School of Continuing and Professional Education.

What does your job entail?
My main duty is to help customers who are experiencing difficulties using the ATM banking service. I also help customers set up their online banking accounts and give them advice on how to use them. If the branch gets really busy, I will also help direct customers to the services they need.

What are the major challenges you have encountered so far?
I find serving customers is not easy. They have many unexpected questions that I am sometimes not able to answer. Luckily, there are seniors to back me up and I have learned a lot from them.

At times, customers can get very frustrated when they are not able to use the ATM. I have to calm them down and do my best to help them.

What have you learned about the banking industry?
When I began to study finance, I was not sure if this was the job for me. But after my intern experience, I think I am ready to enter the banking industry. Work experience is very important when serving customers because knowledge from books is not always useful when handling real-world situations.
What are your future plans?

I will work as a bank teller for now and I hope to advance my career in the bank’s customer-service section in the near future.

What advice can you give those interested in the industry?
You need to have good attention to detail and be careful of what you say to customers, because you want to help them rather than confuse them. Also, always be on time. Banks never open late.

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