Service Business

, 5:313 | Cite as

Competitiveness, resources, and capabilities: empirical evidence from retail banking

  • João J. FerreiraEmail author
  • Carla S. Marques
  • Carlos Azevedo
Empirical article


This research aims to identify and measure bank employee perceptions of the determinants of competitiveness in terms of resources, skills, and capabilities within the retail banking sector. All the 40 branches of a leading Portuguese bank—the Caixa Geral de Depósitos—operating in two Portuguese districts were surveyed. Our results show that bank competitiveness differs according to performance evaluation, human resource (HR) planning, the system of incentives, and managerial motivation. They also demonstrate that human capital is a source of success in the business of banks, which relies heavily on stable and enduring relationships with customers. The study also provides recommendations for retail bank managers seeking to refine their HR strategies as a means of improving their competitiveness.


Competitiveness Resources and capabilities Skills Competitive advantage Human capital Banking sector 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • João J. Ferreira
    • 1
    Email author
  • Carla S. Marques
    • 2
  • Carlos Azevedo
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Management and Economics and NECE, Research UnitUniversity of Beira InteriorCovilhãPortugal
  2. 2.Department of Economics, Sociology and Management and CETRAD, Research UnitUniversity of Trás-os-Montes e Alto DouroVila RealPortugal
  3. 3.University of Beira InteriorCovilhãPortugal

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