If results from two recent opinion polls about customer satisfaction with banks are any indication, major superannuation funds could be the next group to feel the wrath of unhappy clients.
Roy Morgan research shows that bank customer satisfaction has plunged since the banking royal commission began holding a torch to the belly of financial institutions.
And a poll by marketing group Ipsos/Yell has found that Australians are shirking financial advice from professional planners in the wake of the commission hearings.
In mid-August, the commission turns its attention to superannuation, with the following bank/retail and industry funds summoned to ‘please explain’: AMP Super and NM Super (AMP), Australian Super, Catholic Super (CSF), Colonial First State (CBA), Electricity Supply Industry Superannuation (Qld), Host-Plus, IOOF, Mercer, NULIS (MLC/NAB), Onepath and Oasis (ANZ), Suncorp, Sunsuper, United Super (CBUS) and QSuper.
Meanwhile, a recent Roy Morgan poll shows that customer satisfaction with banks has dropped from 82.3 per cent in January – before the royal commission – to 78.3 per cent in June.
This four per cent plunge is the lowest monthly satisfaction level in more than six years, yet it equals the long-term average since 2001.
The Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction-Consumer Banking in Australia June Report is based on interviews with more than 50,000 consumers.
The research suggests that the one in five (21.7 per cent) customers who are unhappy may switch banks, according to Roy Morgan.
Major banks have worn the brunt of the dissatisfaction, with customers of smaller institutions such as ING and Bendigo Bank claiming to be the most satisfied.
“In the six months to June, ING had the highest level of customer satisfaction of the 10 largest banks, with 88.6 per cent. The other strong performer was Bendigo Bank with 87.7 per cent of customers citing satisfaction,” Roy Morgan said.
“These two banks were well ahead of third-placed Bankwest on 83.8 per cent.
“CommBank remained the leader among the Big Four on 78.3 per cent, followed by National Australia Bank (77.1 per cent), Westpac (76.4 per cent) and ANZ (76.1 per cent). All of the Big Four showed declines in satisfaction over the year.”
Another survey of more than 1000 Australians in June, by financial services agency Yell in conjunction with Ipsos, also found that trust in banks had fallen.
That poll found consumers’ faith in their financial institutions had dropped by eight per cent, compared with the same period last year, while trust in financial advisers had dropped by six per cent.
It also found that while trust in financial advisers fell from third to fifth compared with a previous poll, superannuation providers remained the most trusted industry sector.
Nigel Roberts, founding partner at Yell, said: “We’ve seen the Big Four shifting away from wealth services ahead of and during the royal commission, maybe in anticipation of any potential findings. But the question is, will it be enough to protect them from the emergence of neo-banks and other viable alternatives in Australia?
“The challenge for all financial services, and especially the banking sector, is to halt the slide in trust or face real consequences. This can be achieved, but will involve much greater empathy and delivering solutions that truly meet customer needs, rather than meeting sales targets.”
Has your trust on banks and financial advisers been rocked by the royal commission? Are you eagerly awaiting the probe into superannuation funds?