The perception of Islamic banking by FNB sales in the KwaZulu-Natal region.
Islamic Banking is growing faster than any other industry in the financial sector due to profitability, stability and resilience in the wake of the recent financial crisis. As such a large number of conventional banks have decided to include Islamic Banking as part of its growth strategy, however, does the sales force of these conventional bank buy into the concept of Islamic Banking as well? What is the perception of Islamic Banking by the sales force of a these conventional bank? The aim of this study is to determine the perception of Islamic Banking by a conventional banks sales force. In order to get an understanding of the sales force perspective, a survey was conducted on the sales staff. A sample of 100 sales staff was drawn from the branch network in KwaZulu-Natal. The sample was composed of 55.2 per cent females and 44.8 per cent males. Of the sample, majority of the respondents (86.2%) were non-Muslim and 13.8 per cent were Muslim. The branch network was chosen, because the majority of the sales staff in the bank are based at branches and they are the ones that sell bank products. The data for this study was collected using a questionnaire that was developed by the researcher. Analysis revealed that whilst the respondents did feel there was a need for Islamic Banking, they also did feel that Islamic Banking was more complicated than conventional banking. The research study revealed that there was an overall negative perception of Islamic Banking which was primarily based on a lack of knowledge, awareness, understanding and training. It is recommended that banks provide sufficient and effective training to their staff on all products and services so that any negative perception can be eliminated. This study can benefit organisations that are in the Islamic Banking industry or looking at getting into the Islamic Banking industry.