BSA: High satisfaction from building societies say Which?

Customer satisfaction findings in a new Which? report on the best and worst financial brands demonstrate that the different approach taken by mutual financial services providers, including building societies is valued by consumers. 

Of the top 10 financial brands, three are building societies and two others are also mutuals.  Collectively these five had scores ranging from 64-70 per cent, well above the average.

These results mirror independent research commissioned by the BSA which also showed that mutually owned providers tend to score better than other financial institutions when ranked on factors such as trust, value for money and consumer recommendation.

Commenting, Adrian Coles, Director-General of the Building Societies Association said: “It is encouraging to see from the research by Which? that the mutual difference, far from being an ownership technicality, is being positively experienced by the UK public on a daily basis.   Mutuals aim high in their approach to customer service and work hard to achieve it, a fact supported by the FCA complaint data which saw just 4 per cent of complaints about a mutual.  Which? highlighted the words of one respondent which sums up the mutual approach – They behave like normal people, so you can talk to them the way you would normally talk to anyone – good service isn’t rocket science .”

Charts and further data available here


Press contacts

Hilary McVitty
BSA Head of External Affairs
020 7520 5926

Victoria Bamber
Press &Publications Officer
020 7520 5927

Notes to Editors

BSA customer satisfaction research (first published on 7 October 2013)

·         63 per cent of mutual customers say that they trust their provider to act in their best interests
·         44 per cent of bank customers say the same of their provider

Value for money

·         68 per cent of mutual customers say that their provider offers them good value for money
·         46 per cent say the same of their bank


·         79 per cent of mutual customers would recommend their financial services provider to a friend
·         60 per cent say the same of their band

·         Survey commissioned by the Building Societies Association. All figures are from YouGov Plc.
·         Total sample size was 4,781 adults, of which 4,298 had a mortgage, savings or current account.  Percentages based on a summary of responses of providers within the relevant sectors. Fieldwork was undertaken between 16th – 22nd August 2013. Results exclude those who responded 'Don't know'. Charts do not show those who responded 'Neither agree nor disagree'.
·         Higher resolution charts area available from the BSA press office contact
·         Which? report sees mutuals: Yorkshire Building Society, Coventry Building Society, Nationwide Building Society, Smile (a trading name of the Co-operative Bank) and the Co-operative Bank in the top ten financial services providers.
·         The BSA published a diversity index for financial services in April 2013, exploring the factors contributing to diversity and the importance of the UK having a diverse financial services sector.  The summary report can be accessed here.