How hard is it to do business with your bank? 2015 Customer Effort Index in Banks & Credit Unions Results

In the financial services industry the banking sector is seeing positive yet modest growth, and  many firms are zeroing in on customer experience as a means of fueling growth and competitive advantage. Their approaches to elevating customer experience, though, vary significantly.

We have found that rather than simply trying to “wow” customers/members, banks and credit unions can gain more by making customer interactions as “effortless” as possible across channels.  This cross-channel view is highly important as consistent ease across all channels is what creates differentiated value and what customers will most remember.

The West Monroe Partners’ 2015 Customer Effort Index in Banking Study studied the level of effort required to do business with more than 25 national and regional banks and credit unions. Through this research, we not only identified “customer effort leaders” and the practices that those banks and credit unions employ to reduce customer effort; we also established a correlation between low customer effort and higher revenue growth.

Increasingly, organizations across various industries are measuring “customer effort,” or the ease with which customers interact with an organization. The lower the effort required, the better the performance. West Monroe Partners’ technique for measuring customer effort is a multi-channel metric called a Customer Effort Index (CEI).

West Monroe Partners recently used this approach to benchmark customer effort in the banking and credit union industry. The West Monroe Partners’ 2015 Customer Effort Index in Banking Study—conducted in late 2014 and early 2015—included more than 25 national and regional US banks and credit unions.

After measuring CEI for these banks and credit unions, we examined the revenue growth on income statements from publicly available financial data. We ran a statistical regression and correlation analysis of the institutions’ CEI (assessed during 2014) with revenue growth from 2013 to 2014.   These correlation coefficients and the fit of regression line are very strong and statistically significant—demonstrating empirically that level of customer effort, as measured by West Monroe’s Customer Effort Index, correlates highly with revenue growth for banks and credit unions.

Profitable growth is always a challenge for banks and credit unions. But this research concludes that taking steps to ensure that customer experiences are as effortless as possible across channels can help banks and credit unions break out of the “commoditization” rut and boost revenue growth.

For the full Summary on West Monroe Partners’ 2015 Customer Effort Index in Banking Study please click link and register here.

For more information on how Customer Effort Index can help you reduce customer effort and grow revenue, please contact Dave Nash, Director-Customer Experience, at dnash@westmonroepartners.com or Patricia Tripar, Senior Manager-Banking & Credit Unions at ptripar@westmonroepartners.com.

Contributions by:

Hattie Winter, Consultant – Customer Experience

Benjamin Snyder, Experienced Consultant – Customer Experience

Tim Fox, Consultant – Advanced Analytics

Jeremy Wortz, Senior Architect – Advanced Analytics

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Phone: 312-602-4000
Email: marketing@westmonroepartners.com
222 W. Adams
Chicago, IL 60606
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