How hopeless Voice of the Customer can ruin your Customer Experience

Posted by Mike McMaster

November 12, 2014

hopeless-voice-of-the-customer-CXI have just opened a new bank account. The first one in over 25 years.

And all my fears about snail-pace bureaucracy, unintelligible forms, endless call management options (press 1 for a service you don’t want, press 2 to get looped back to where you started, press 3 to lose the will to live etc) were totally unfounded.

The process was quick, simple and painless:

  • The call was picked up in under 15 seconds
  • The agent was friendly, helpful, knowledgeable and human
  • They sorted out what I needed in one phone call
  • They have sent me everything that I needed quickly (cheque book, card, online banking widget, PIN, payment book, payment envelopes etc) and to the right place
  • The online banking service was live within moments of the activation call

And this isn’t a straightforward personal account. This is a charity business account, with multiple trustees and signatures, several different addresses and lots of complexity in verification.

I almost enjoyed the process (almost) and I’m seriously considering moving my personal account to them.

So, on a scale of 0 to 10 (where 10 is very) how likely am I to recommend this company to my friends or colleagues?


How strange then, that the bank in question has absolutely no idea how I feel about them. They haven’t got a clue about the emotional impact that their service and process has had or that they have just recruited a Raver – an active advocate who will tell other people about their great service. The best I managed was a “thank you” at the end of the call to the agent – I’m too English to be effusive directly to a real person over the phone!

They don’t know – because they simply didn’t ask.

On top of that, after looking for over 20 minutes across their online banking site, Twitter and Facebook, I couldn’t find a single channel where I could give them my feedback straight away. No email address, survey form, text short-dial or Twitter handle. I could post a letter... but it’s the 21st century!

And this is a problem, because now I’m feeling a little uneasy about my NPS® of 10. The bank has worked hard to make it a great experience... but they don’t actually seem to give a damn about my opinion. So if there is a problem in the future, or I am unhappy about an experience, then presumably they don’t care about that either.

No wonder 96% of unhappy customers don’t tell companies about a poor experience and 43% of British adults say that they don’t give feedback because they believe that no-one is listening.

Hmm... maybe I won’t be such a Raver after all. Sure, I’ll bank with them, and I may even buy other products, but I’m not going to recommend them to my friends and colleagues, or name them in this blog. That’s dropped my NPS® to an average 7 (neutral) and my expected spend is down by about two-thirds.

It isn’t hard to sort this out – just ask and listen to the Voice of the Customer!

Do you have an example of a bank that DOES actively ask for your feedback, and makes you feel confident that they’re listening? I’d love to hear your examples.

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Topics: Customer Experience, Blog

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