NEWS15 January 2015

UK customer satisfaction ‘at lowest point since 2010’

News UK

UK — Overall customer satisfaction is now lower than at any point since January 2010, according to the UK Customer Satisfaction Index (UKCSI).

Retailers John Lewis and Amazon appear at the top of the index and a number of organisations, including Northern Ireland Electricity, Santander, Nationwide, Royal Mail and 3, have been highlighted for gaining the largest improvements in customer satisfaction scores over the past five years. However, the research claims that customers feel ‘speed and responsiveness’, ‘complaints handling’ and ‘staff’ behaviour’ have deteriorated most in the past two years and only two of the 28 metrics measured in the UKCSI – ‘outcome of the complaint’ and ‘on-time delivery’ – have shown improvements since January 2013.

The report concludes that many UK companies are “failing to keep up with the rapidly changing customer environment”.

The index is based on feedback from around 39,000 customer experiences across 13 sectors of the UK economy and features around 200 organisations.

In the utilities sector, Southern Water, Yorkshire Water and United Utilities registered the largest improvement in satisfaction score over the past year and four of the big six returned higher scores.

“The UK is shifting from a transactional economy to a relationship economy, customers expect a dialogue with organisations rather than monologue, and they are using a mixture of new and existing channels to engage,” said Jo Causon, CEO of the Institute of Customer Service, which released the report. “They demand transparency, are increasingly service-savvy and focus on ethics and sustainability. The UKCSI results show there is huge potential for companies to drive growth and brand loyalty by improving customer service.

“With so much information at our fingertips, business leaders need to start measuring the success and impact of customer service.”