Bank customers prefer solving problems face to face

Bank customers prefer solving problems face to face

While Aussies are happy to do their banking digitally, it takes a conversation, preferably in person, to answer tricky question and resolve problems, according to a new study.

According to the J.D. Power 2017 Australia Retail Banking Satisfaction Study, 89% of Australian banking customers have used a digital channel to interact with their primary bank over the past 12 months. However, visiting a branch or calling a bank representative was found to be the preferred option for resolving problems (86%) and for getting answers to questions (73%).

Even millennials (defined by J.D. Power as those born between 1982 and 1994) were found to prefer the personal touch when push comes to shove, with 85% preferring to speak to a person when they have a problem and 66% when they have a question.

J.D. Power service industry practice leader, Anthony Chiam, said that banks closing branches and driving a digital agenda is not going to address the “pain points” of their customers:

“The bank branch still has an important role to play for the customer, but pain points online and on banking apps also need to be fixed if banks want to move more customers to these channels. Ultimately, if banks do want to transition to digital, they need to make sure their customers are ready to follow.”

The study found that 14% of bank customers indicate having experienced a problem with their bank in the past 12 months:

  • 26% have experienced a problem with the customer service provided at the branch or on the phone.
  • 32% have experienced a problem accessing their online banking account.
  • 34% have experienced an issue with their mobile banking app.
  • 48% were not welcomed at their bank branch.
  • 32% say that their primary bank’s ATM was down or out of service in the past 12 months. Top reasons cited include:
    • It was being serviced by bank staff or security (30%);
    • Required functionality was not working (24%);
    • It was out of cash (20%). 

Switching and saving

As a result of these unsatisfying experiences, many bank customers are starting to switch banks, with 18% of surveyed customers opening a new account with another bank rather than their primary bank over the past 12 months.

According to the study, customers who receive tailored information from their banks are far more satisfied than those who do not (796 vs. 703, respectively, on a 1000-point scale).  

What’s more, these satisfied banks customers were found to be more likely to use additional products from their bank, with 63% saying they “definitely will” use their bank again when they need a bank product, compared with only 33% who do not receive tailored information.

Millennials were found to be the demographic that the banks will need to keep an eye on, with 25% of millennials surveyed found to be considering switching their primary bank, compared with the study average of 16%.

Which banks have the most satisfied customers?

According to the study, Heritage Bank ranked highest in retail banking customer satisfaction among non-major banks, with an overall satisfaction score of 827, achieving the highest score in product offerings, facility, account information, and account activities.

Non-major bank Overall satisfaction index ranking (out of 1000)
Heritage Bank 827
People’s Choice Credit Union 822
CUA 796
Bendigo Bank 790
Bank of Queensland 777
BankSA 771
Suncorp Bank 767
Non-major financial institutions – Average 767
Bank of Melbourne 758
Bankwest 748
St.George Bank 740
HSBC 725
Citibank 709

Source: J.D. Power

Among the major banks, Commonwealth Bank came in first with a score of 747, performing particularly well in the areas of product offerings, facility, account activities, and problem resolution factors.

Major Bank Overall satisfaction index ranking (out of 1000)
Commonwealth Bank 747
NAB 745
Major banks average 741
Westpac 738
ANZ 732

Source: J.D. Power

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Learn more about bank accounts

How can you cash a cheque without a bank account?

You can cash a cheque without a bank account if you visit the bank that issued the cheque. For example, if somebody sends you a cheque from Bank X (as written on the cheque) and you visit Bank X, it’s likely that Bank X will let you cash the cheque – provided the person who wrote the cheque has enough money in their account. Bank X would probably charge you a fee for the service.

Can you find your bank account number online?

If your bank offers online services, you should be able to find your bank account number online by logging into your account on your bank’s website and checking your details there.

Keep in mind that each type of account you have with a bank comes with a unique account number. This means if you have a bank account as well as a savings account, for example, your bank account number and your savings account number will be different.

If you don’t have access to your bank account online or can’t login, you should be able to find your account number on a mailed bank statement, if you have one.

Alternatively, you can call your bank’s customer service number or visit a branch to retrieve your account number.

How do you find a bank account number by name?

For privacy reasons, Australian banks won’t hand out account numbers or other details about their customers. However, if you provide a bank with a BSB and account number, they should be able to confirm if those numbers belong to one of their customers.

Can you deposit money into somebody else's bank account?

One of the easiest banking tasks in the world is depositing money. You can even deposit money into someone else’s bank account if you wish.

The basic information you need to deposit money into a third-party bank account is:

  • Payee’s name
  • Bank, building society or credit union (though this isn’t necessary)
  • BSB (or bank code, which is the branch identifier)
  • Account number

Including the name of the financial institution isn’t necessary – particularly with online banking – because the BSB will identify this for you.

A handy tip is to record yourself (or add a personal message) in the transaction description or reference. This will show up on the recipients account, letting them know who’s paid them the money.

How do I close a bank account?

Closing a bank account is one of those tasks that’s easy to put in the too-hard basket. There are quite a few steps involved, some which may require you to hang on the phone for a while.  

Here’s a handy checklist of items to tick off, so the job gets done quicker. If you don’t do your banking online, the following steps can also be done at a branch.   

  • Cancel any scheduled or recurring payments
  • Update your direct debit details (such as loan repayments) with creditors
  • Export your payee address book (to keep a record of saved third-party bank account details)
  • Transfer the balance of your account (to the new bank account)
  • Close your account online, or by calling the bank or visiting a branch

How do you open a bank account in Australia?

Opening a bank account in Australia is usually a straightforward process. Some banks give you the option of opening an account online, while others require you to visit a branch.

Different bank accounts offer different features, so it’s best to compare your options to find one that suits you.

All banks require you to pass an identity check to open a bank account. Australia uses the 100-point identification system, which means you’ll need to show a number of forms of ID that, together, add up to 100 points.

Common ID types include a driver’s licence, passport, Australian visa in a foreign passport, and Australian Medicare card. You’ll find out what types of ID are accepted when you go through the sign-up process online or at a branch.

Once your account is open, you’ll be given or sent a debit card that you can use to make purchases and withdraw money from your account.

Can I start a bank account online?

Yes, most lenders that operate in Australia will let you set up a bank account online. The process is usually simple and takes five to 10 minutes. You will probably need to provide a passport or birth certificate, as well as a driver’s licence, Medicare card or another form of secondary identification. Requirements differ from lender to lender, so some institutions might ask for more or different forms of ID.

How do I overdraw my Commonwealth Bank account?

Overdrawing a bank account can happen by accident. It’s often hard to know what your balance is, particularly with direct debits, scheduled repayments and pending transactions competing for cash.

To avoid being stuck with a bank fee every time your account is overdrawn, you can apply for a personal overdraft. This will enable you to overdraw your account up to an approved amount.

A personal overdraft is connected to your CommBank Everyday Account, so you can enjoy easy access to extra funds once approved – anywhere from $100 up to $20,000.

Your overdraft funds can be accessed via your CommBank keycard or Debit MasterCard, or online through NetBank and the CommBank app.

To apply you can either call the Commonwealth Bank directly or visit your local branch.

Can I open bank accounts for my children?

A common question for new parents is, ‘Can I open a bank account for my child?’

The short answer is yes – as a parent you can open a bank account for your child.

Once you’ve compared your options and found a bank account that suits your needs, the process is relatively simple.

As the bank account is for your child, you’ll need to provide some documentation such as proof of ID, including your tax file number.

You will also need a copy of your child’s birth certificate, and in some cases you may also need to sign a guarantee of indemnity.

Depending on the bank and whether you’re an existing customer, you may be able to open a bank account for your child online. However, you may still need to go into a branch to prove your identity.

Can you get a payday loan without a bank account?

Yes. Some payday lenders are willing to transfer loans to prepaid debit cards instead of bank accounts.

How do you change your account name on NAB banking?

Changing the name on your NAB bank account is straightforward, as long as you have the right documents.

If you’ve just got married, divorced or legally changed your name, here’s what you need:

  • Married – a marriage certificate
  • Divorced –your ‘decree nisi’
  • Legal name change –your legal name change certificate

You can take either the original document, or a certified copy, into a NAB branch, where it needs to be sighted by a bank employee and a copy taken.

Your NAB bank account name will be updated immediately. New debit, ATM and credit cards with your updated name will also need to be issued. These usually take between five to 10 working days to be posted out to you. Your existing cards will keep working until you activate your new ones.

If you haven’t legally changed your name, but just want to change your account nicknames, you can log onto NAB and do it through the Settings/Mailbox menu.

Can British expats still open bank accounts?

As a British expat, you can open an Australian bank account, and you can apply for an account the same ways an Aussie would. You can even open an account online from the UK prior to relocating.

If you’re overseas, the bank you choose to open an account with may call you to provide you with our new account details beforehand. You can then have your ID verified within a branch once you’ve arrived.

And if you’re already living down under, the following list outlines the types of information required by most banks when opening an Australian bank account.

  • Australian residential address
  • Tax file number (TFN) or a TFN exemption
  • Identification (this can be your passport)

How do you set up a bank account online?

Once you’ve compared bank accounts and found the right one, the process of opening a bank account online is quite simple and can be done in around 10 minutes.

To set up a bank account online, you’ll need to prove your identity and provide an approved form of ID as well as your tax file number (TFN).

If you’re a new customer of the bank, you’ll need to verify your identity and potentially upload documents before you can complete your online application.

Once your ID has been verified and you’ve set up your bank account online, you should receive your bank cards in the mail along with your PIN and any other account details.

Can you open another account at the same bank?

Yes, you can open another account at the same bank if you already have an account there, but some banks place a limit on how many specific accounts you can open.

Generally, though, it is possible to have more than one everyday account, one personal account and one joint account, or have different types of accounts – such as a transaction account and a savings account.

Keep in mind that some bank accounts come with fees, so you could be charged twice for having two types of the same account at the same bank.

Also, if you have more than one high-interest transaction account at the same bank, only one account will be able to earn the highest rate of interest.