Unstructured Supplementary Service Data has taken the hassle off from bank transactions in so many ways. You don’t need to queue up at the bank, standing on tired legs waiting for the cashier at the bank to deposit, withdraw or make a transfer. And you don’t need the ATM to make quick cashless transactions either.

And so, a number of students around Nigeria are appreciating the Nigerian banks for their efforts to sustain the development of the service. I have to confess, in the area of USSD, Nigerian banks have tried, although the system is still far from my standards, but its still good. Despite the fact that sometimes one will go through the pain of having to recharge and not see the recharge due to some nasty system error and then will have to wait for more than 7 working days to get the solution rectified. Once, the cashier had to refund me the money from her purse after she saw my long face three consecutive time in a one week. All the same, kudos to the Nigerian banks and a big shout out to Guarantee Trust Bank and Skye bank and Diamond bank too. They are the banks with the best performing USSD service. But Diamond bank is faster once it has to do with sending you debit alerts, they don’t waste time 🙂 wink.

But looking ahead… What can be done to make the service better. The service is already better because it can always work even when the mobile Internet has a mind of its own, all you need is a GSM. So far, the banks have excelled in the area of VTU top-up or airtime recharge, but most banks do not feature fund transfer, checking account balance and mobile cardless ATM withdrawal. The banks that support it are not able to maintain the service well, it could be so epileptic. Well… Except for banks like GTBank and surprisingly First Bank!

So, first, they should look at enabling fund transfer service and making it very effective too. And then cardless ATM withdrawal. Not everyone carries an ATM card around, but a mobile phone could save a dire situation when the card isn’t there.

All the same, I write a big ‘thank you’ to all Nigerian banks for making life easier with USSD!

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