eBucks is the reward programme of FNB and RMB Private Bank in South Africa. It works similarly to a Nectar card in that you can earn eBucks online and in stores from a variety of partner stores. The biggest earnings, however, come from the bank itself. If you bank with ‘us’, you get rewarded. Each year, the bank publishes the earn rules for the year ahead.

I worked in the eBucks UI team, which produced designs and front-end development for all digital projects and campaigns.

The problem:

Marketing mailers were triggering an uptick in phone calls to the call centre, and very few had anything to do with the content of the mailers. It quickly became obvious that customers were confused about the last set of earn rules the bank had published, several months before. It had just taken that long for customers to notice the diminishing earnings each month. The call centre had to hire and train more temps to compensate for the volume. They now dreaded marketing mailers.

How I got involved:

I usually worked on the retail projects, but volunteered to look at the bank rules and see what I could do for both the call centre and our customers. I also recruited the bank’s account manager to facilitate questions and relay my recommendations to each of the banking divisions that sent in the rules for each product (there were roughly ten products).


  • Due to financial regulations, we weren’t allowed direct contact with customer data or customers themselves
  • Any queries to and approvals from the bank needed to go through an account manager

How I worked around the constraints:

  • Monitored analytics
  • Requested reports on customer questions and responses from the call centre
  • Spoke to the account managers (for the retail, premiere, and commercial banking segments) to get a view of the complaints coming through to the bank


  • Wrote, edited and redesigned content in Word documents for sign-off from bank
  • Designed wireframes for approval, and high-fidelity mockups to hand over to the front-end developer to add new classes and icon sets to the UI pattern library while I continued with content sign-off
  • Built all JSP pages with additional analytics tracking
  • Designed and built marketing campaign mailers and web banners to launch the rules


  • Call numbers after marketing mailers were more manageable.
  • The language I’d standardised was added to eBucks editorial style guide.
  • The banking divisions were happy with the final pages, and commissioned a similar style of content for their rules the following year.
  • The bank’s account manager and I were nominated for an internal award (The eBucker award).
  • My team and the account management team jointly won ‘team of the year’ for this work, because it helped build better relationships with the banking divisions.
  • Because the rules were now easy to understand, I was asked to rewrite all contact centre scripts so that each scenario also received a sincere, human response in plain language.
  • I was brought onto other projects to improve the UX earlier, such as the rewards calculator, broker dashboard, the travel booking engine’s passenger discount rules, and the premiere segment’s dynamic reward statements.


This was one of the projects that widened the door for UX buy-in, so that my team were brought onto more varied projects earlier.