SNS Historisch Centrum
CEO of SNS Retail Bank
This vision has prompted us to review and restructure our distribution channels. We have invested a lot of money in improving our Internet Bank to provide optimal service and make it into a user-
We started to work on this new strategy in 2006 and the roll-
Which market trends and developments inspired this change?
In 2006, SNS Bank was largely dependent on mortgage margins and wanted to diversify sources of income. SNS Bank was established as a
savings bank in 1817. One of the obvious choices was to go back to our roots to a certain extent and to concentrate on savings deposits, which generate high liquidity and good margins. With hindsight, it was a good choice.
Can you tell us some more about the SNS "Bank Shops"?
The main difference between the Bank Shops and the traditional bank branches is that they do not have bank tellers and they do not handle cash. The shop is service-
SNS will eventually have more than 250 shops throughout the Netherlands, instead of our original 150 branches that were located in the eastern and less prosperous part of the country for the most part. One-
We understand that SNS is a very client-
SNS has a client base of about 1.5 million customers. There were two groups of customers in this client base which had very different reactions. The first group were traditional customers who have done business with SNS Bank for 30 years and were very much cash-
All in all we did lose some customers because of the change in strategy. This was, however, less than we anticipated and we have also gained some new customers. Thus our client base remains relatively stable, with perhaps a slight increase. Ninety-
We measure customer satisfaction through daily customer surveys. At the beginning of the roll-
Can people with physical handicaps use SNS Internet Bank?
Yes, when redesigning our Internet Bank we were very careful to ensure that it would be accessible and easy to use by the blind and disabled. This has also had the additional benefit that the website is very structured and logical, and is considered to be particularly user-
Can we conclude with a word of advice from you for any other WSBI/ESBG member which might wish to embark upon such an ambitious new strategy?
Efficiency is only important if it is efficient for the customer, and at the end of the day efficiency for the customer will also translate into efficiency for your company. Thus my word of advice is to start your strategy from outside in rather than inside out. This will reap benefits if this approach is applied consistently.
How has the staff of SNS Bank reacted to the new strategy's repercussions for their jobs and working environment?
In 2006 and 2007, when the process first started, our staff were not happy and there was a lot of resistance. We had 1,500 people in our branch network and we had to lay off 700 employees and hire 300 new employees. The second challenge was that the staff were used to working for customers in a service-
The new SNS Bank strategy
Interview with Henk Kroeze, CEO of SNS Bank
SNS Bank hosts ESBG Marketing Network
The new SNS Bank strategy has captured the attention of the ESBG Marketing Network, which held its last meeting in Utrecht on 17 November 2010. This was an occasion for members to gain profound insight into the new SNS Bank strategy and its transition programme. They also had the opportunity to visit an SNS Bank Shop in Utrecht and the SNS Client Service Centre.
SNS Bank has almost finished the roll-
The vision behind the strategy is that the customer can make his or her own choice about the distribution channels they wish to use. Secondly, we are not a primary bank. Our focus is no longer on products but on the customer. We provide customers with all of the services they may need. If they come to us for a savings account or a mortgage we are happy to supply the requested product and will try to optimise that relationship. We also sell third-
One of the new bank shops developed by ESBG member SNS Reaal in the Netherlands