Marquette Banks of Minneapolis has hired 800 Support, an outsourcing company for call-center operations.

The bank will rely on 800 Support for responses to telephone calls and e-mail messages from home banking customers using Quicken and Money personal finance software and from business customers using QuickBooks. It also will handle questions from users of Marquette's proprietary dial-up banking service.

"This gives us a tremendous competitive advantage," said Doug Hile, president of Marquette.

Marquette had previously directed technical support questions to Intuit Inc. and Microsoft Corp., the providers of Quicken and Money, respectively. "Customers had to endure long hold times," said Mr. Hile. "As soon as they learned the caller was a home banking user, they redirected the caller back to the bank. This didn't provide the personal touch Marquette is known for."

800 Support, founded in 1989, is owned by Communication Services Group Inc., Scottsdale, Ariz.

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