Less 'personal touch': Big four lose satisfaction ground

by Caroline Dann12 Jul 2012

The good news continues for smaller banks, with overall business customer satisfaction at 65.9% for June - a 0.4% increase from May's figures.

The results, from Roy Morgan's Business Satisfaction report for June, found the big four had slipped even further behind their smaller competitors, with satisfaction at 63.5%.

Individually, the CBA increased by 0.6% points over the month, followed by ANZ at 0.4%, while Westpac decreased by 0.6% and NAB by 0.7%.
Dissatisfaction with deposit services were cited as a key factor, "most likely due to the RBA cuts," said the report.
Conversely, the RBA cuts were seen to have a positive effect on satisfaction levels with commercial loans.
Satisfaction amongst business customers is well behind personal customers, by a substantial 14%.
Two areas respondents felt most aggrieved were in bigger banks showing a less than active interest in their industry, and an inability to maintain regular contact.
Roy Morgan's industry communications director Norman Morris recently told Australian Broker Online the battle between big and small banks came down to the personal touch.
“It starts with a culture of serving customers. If shareholders are the main concern, customer service may slip. This is the advantage of Building Societies. It’s an entirely different ethos. If you’re smaller it has more of a personal, local touch,” he said.
Maintaining good relationships with existing non-main financial institution customers is also cited as a route to better satisfaction levels.
"[They] appear to get very little attention as is reflected in their very low average satisfaction score of 57.8% across the four major banks. 
"Improving the relationship with these customers has the greatest potential for business growth compared to trying to obtain new customers," said the report.

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