Taking a close look at the client's story

Anita Schrier - Training Coach Customer Onboarding CDD

What does it take to become a Customer Onboarding Specialist? What skills do you need? Training coach Anita Schrier has all the answers. She supervises new Customer Onboarding Specialists during the training process within the KYC/CDD department at Rabobank.

What kind of work does a Customer Onboarding Specialist do?

“A Customer Onboarding Specialist has a gatekeeper role. You perform risk analysis when accepting new customers to determine whether there’s an increased integrity risk. To do your job, you have all kinds of research and smart algorithms at your disposal. You really want to get to know the customers better.”

“For example, when someone makes a payment to a sanctioned country or suddenly puts 2 million in a his account, it rings a bell. We investigate the origin of those assets and look for the customer’s story.”

“I have been working at Rabobank for over 30 years, of which I have been involved in CDD for the last 10 years.” says Anita Schrier, training coach for Customer Onboarding within CDD. I was working as a manager CDD when I saw the position for training coach. I read the content and thought: this is really for me.”

“As a coach, I am involved in training Customer Onboarding Specialists within CDD. The position appeals to me because it is a combination of content CDD and coaching. Within the training program, I coach our new colleagues by giving presentations and discussing the customer research that has been carried out. I get a lot of energy by contributing to the personal development of new colleagues.”

Customer Onboarding Specialist: what skills are useful to have?

“In this field, you obviously need an analytical mind. You look in (public) sources for relevant information. Does the turnover match the industry data? What are the activities of the company? Is it a private company, a holding company, are there foreign entities?

The customer is your most important resource.
Anita Schrier

But just having an analytical mind is not enough. I always say: the customer is your most important resource. You have to have good communication skills, because you will interact with customers a lot. You get the most information by asking him questions. Why does he choose a certain structure for his business? Do his statements make sense? Is he aware of certain risks? This is where you want to get answers.”

“We want to know who our customers are. What is their story? That’s what makes CDD so fascinating. I myself really like reading, which fits well with this job. Although it’s often a less suspenseful book than it might seem right now. The vast majority of our clients have – thankfully – integrity.”

“You don’t have to have specific knowledge of a particular industry. In fact, sometimes it’s better when you’re not familiar with something. I recently had a student who was struggling with a case from a technology company. She had – by her own admission – no knowledge of IT. As a coach, I then tell them, let the customer explain it. Entrepreneurs like to talk about their business. Stay curious and keep asking questions. Everything will come out naturally.”

How do you become a Customer Onboarding Specialist?

All new Customer Onboarding Specialists go through an intensive 8-week training program. “We have a very high quality program, even if I say so myself”, Anita explains with a laugh. “You start with an introduction to CDD. This is followed by sessions from our expertise center, e-learnings and presentations from the coaches.”

“At the same time, you get to work with current cases. You do a complete investigation step by step. Your future team leader reviews the final report, after which you have completed your training. Now you’re ready to start working in one of our Customer Onboarding teams in Eindhoven, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Elst, Hengelo or Groningen. CDD is a complex field. We don’t throw you in at the deep end right away: in the beginning you work together with a buddy.”

Working on a case together

“Since the corona crisis started, we’ ve all been working from home. New colleagues often have to get used to on their own from home after the intensive training in which you do a lot together. Fortunately, there are plenty of contact moments. We start every day with a daily session and end with a closing session. In addition, every week you discuss a case with your entire team. Together you discuss what stands out to you and what you can learn from it.”

“The program is almost entirely digital and that works really well, fortunately. As a training coach, I can communicate the information online effectively. The course participants are very enthusiastic about it. They find the program instructive and a nice combination of theory and practice.”

Working at a bank?

“Within the bank, there is a collaborative culture. You work a lot as a team and management is approachable. Asking and giving feedback is ingrained in our culture. That’s how you learn if perhaps you can do something better or differently. This could be your skills, or work content. The goal of working together is to improve together.”

“There is a lot of focus on employee well-being, especially now that everyone is working from home. That’s in small initiatives to big choices. For example, the bank provides a good home workspace and everything you need to stay connected. There are online meditation sessions, virtual get-togethers, or you can exercise or go on a walk together. The reason is simple: If you are feeling good, you will radiate that to your customers. ”

“The reason I’ve been working at Rabobank for so long? I feel a strong connection to our mission. We help local foundations and entrepreneurs improve their own environment. You can make the world a better place when you do it together.”