The reputation of the financial sector has never been worse than in recent years. Last year the Financial Ombudsman Service revealed that customer complaints about finance firms doubled, breaking the half-million mark. Despite this many institutions are still struggling to respond and react to the negativity.
To make matters worse studies have found that the vast majority of the British public won’t tell their financial institutions that they’re unhappy. Instead they’ll silently detract to the nearest competitor, leaving the company asking questions and at a loss as to what they could have done better.
As many CX professionals will know, this is a problem that can be easily solved. To find out what matters to your customers you need to ask them. Of course some forward thinking brands have recognised the need to improve their customer engagement – in fact our clients who use the Rant & Rave platform to take real-time inspired action have seen their profits increase by over £120 million.
Below are some tips for financial institutions on how they can improve their CX:
- Invite customers to share their feedback whenever they feel the need. Not all Moments of Truth ® can be predicted, so combine proactive requests for feedback with ‘Listening Posts’ which make it quick and simple for customers to share their views whenever they feel the need.
- Many financial institutions these days employ someone with the words ‘Customer Experience’ in their job title, but few actually have them at board level. To really ensure you take it to the heart of your business, ensure that you have someone who specialises in CX at a senior level so that you can lead from the top.
- Use feedback technology that enables you to show an ROI. Like PR and marketing, it can be difficult to show an FD ROI on Customer Experience. However, if you have technology in place where you can see if overall your customer satisfaction has increased day by day, month by month and year on year and you’ll not only know that your changes have worked but you’ll also know future tweaks you need to make.
- Don’t get complacent! Banks used to find comfort in the fact that consumers were ten times more likely to divorce their spouse than they were to leave their bank. But the new legislation which came into force in September that forces banks to ensure that current account switching takes no longer than seven days is already having an affect. Consumers are now the ones in control and won’t be afraid to make that change if they’re unhappy!
- Engage, engage, engage! Talk to your clients in the way they want to be spoken to – whether that’s over the phone, text message, letter or email. And be transparent. The BBC’s Robert Peston recently wrote a piece praising short term loan companies for their transparency when compared with retail banks who he suggested don’t communicate enough. If your client is approaching their overdraft limit, tell them! Let them know that you care about their balance so that they are not inclined to go into debt. If they believe that you really care about their welfare then you’ll win their trust.