Getting through to someone who can help is causing financial services customers the most frustration, according to the latest Institute of Customer Service report.

The July 2022 UK Customer Satisfaction Index (UKCSI) has revealed that making it easier to contact the right person is the top issue that banks and building societies should improve, followed by a need for more knowledgeable staff and better website navigation.

Satisfaction in financial services up again

According to this latest report, average customer satisfaction for bank and building societies (the financial services entities represented in this grouping – insurance was measured separately) is 80.3%, up by 1.5 points compared to this time last year. However, the improvement is much slighter when compared to its January 2022 level, at a mere 0.1 point above what was recorded then.

This level of problem-experience is 2.2% more than in July 2021, bringing it to where it was in January 2022. Despite this, it is still 3.2 percentage points lower than the current UK all-sector average.

And in further comparison with the last report (January), the biggest improvement in the sector is for satisfaction with complaint handling. All four of the complaint handling measures used for the research are at least 0.7 points higher than in July 2021. And yet, despite this improvement in complaint handling, 14.1% customers still experienced a problem with a financial services organisation.

Quality is most frequent issue

The number one cause of problems was quality or reliability of goods or services (given by 41.9% of customers who said they had experienced a problem), followed by suitability of goods or services (chosen by 27%) and then the availability of goods or services (24.4%).

Out of these complaints, 36.3% were reported in person, which was up by 12.8% compared to July 2022. Interestingly, this was more than the UK all-sector average, which came in as only 32.8%.

In total, 64.8% of customer experiences recorded in the financial services sector related to current accounts. Average satisfaction for these experiences is 81.1%, up by 1.2% compared to July 2021.

Meanwhile, the average satisfaction for customer experiences to do with savings increased by 1.4% to 79.4%. And satisfaction with credit card experiences has improved in this latest report by 4.1 points, to 80.2%.

Overall, banks and building societies come 7th highest rated sector out of 13 sectors in the July UKCSI report, which is 1.9 points above the UK all-sector average and 0.5% below the insurance sector.

Comparison: UKCSI dimensions of customer satisfaction January and July 2022

Banks & building societies
UK all-sector average
January 2022 July 2022 January 2022 July 2022
Complaint handling 67.7% 66.4% 65.8% 69.5%
Experience 81.3% 79.4% 79.3% 81.5%
Customer ethos 79.3% 77.7% 77.8% 79.3%
Emotional connection 79.5% 77.6% 77.8% 79.8%
Ethics 79.5% 76.6% 78.6% 78.5%


The UKCSI acts as a national barometer of customer satisfaction and has been published twice a year by The Institute of Customer Service since 2008. Banks and building societies is one of the 13 sectors it focuses on as part of its objective polling of over 279 organisations.

We have solutions to help with all of the issues that customers believe banks and building societies should improve upon. Our omni-channel CX Smart-agent gives customers a journey to the right person that is tailored to them, and our contact management solution supplies the people, technology and premises for all types of contact management.

And our extensive learning and development offerings can give your staff the assistance they need, including assisted customer conversations (ACC), AI-driven technology that analyses customer conversations and automatically helps our agents to identify the best solutions to queries.

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Written by

Aps Ajit

Aps Ajit

Managing Director at Financial Services Capita Experience

Aparajita ‘Aps’ Ajit is the Managing Director responsible for the financial services market vertical that focuses on driving better outcomes for clients across pensions, payments, mortgages, retail banking, motor finance and fintech. She is an FCA senior manager function role holder for the regulated business under her oversight. Aps has extensive experience of working with financial services clients globally and is passionate about driving business value and positive customer impact.

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