Bank of Ireland failing to keep customers happy

In the latest biannual survey of bank customer satisfaction, we reveal those that have made it to Which? Recommended Provider status, and those that continue to let their customers down.

Which? surveyed 1,631 members of the general public:

·         Bank of Ireland came bottom, with a score of just 41%, scoring just two out of five stars for customer service, regular communication, clarity of statement and branch availability.

·         Ulster Bank, which suffered a computer glitch in March, came second from bottom in our league table with just 45%.

·         First Direct has, for the eighth consecutive time, come top scoring an impressive 85%.

·         Norwich & Peterborough Building Society has been awarded Which? Recommended Provider status for the first time, achieving a score of 71%.

·         High street giants Barclays, Halifax/Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Lloyds, NatWest/RBS and Santander all scored below the market average of 62%.

Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd, said:

“It’s clear once again that the biggest banks have a lot of work to do to improve their customer service. For people unhappy with their current account provider, switching should get easier and quicker from this autumn, and we hope that more customers will put pressure on the poor performers by voting with their feet. The Government’s proposed reforms must lead to more competition on the high street and a big change in banking so that banks put customers first, not sales.”

Notes to editors:

1.    Companies must score at least 70% in customer satisfaction to gain Which? Recommended Provider (WRP) status.

2.    Which? surveyed 1,631 members of the general public online in May 2013 about which banks and building societies they had current accounts with. Respondents rated each bank on satisfaction with the following customer service elements: customer service, value, regular communication, clarity of statement, transparency of charges/penalties, dealing with queries and complaints, branch availability, service in branch, and telephone banking service. Those with more than one account were given the opportunity to rate up to two of the banks and building societies they bank with.

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