Consumers More Satisfied With CUService

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NEW YORK - (10/06/04) -- Customer satisfaction with theircredit unions rose significantly this year, with 73% of memberssurveyed in an annual Gallup Poll saying they were "very satisfied"with their credit union service, up from 63% last year. The survey,conducted for The American Banker, sister publication of The CreditUnion Journal, found that customer satisfaction also improved atbanks, but still lagged far behind credit unions, with 58% of bankcustomers "very satisfied" with their bank's service, up from 54%last year. "Credit unions, by their very charters, tend to be verymuch more customer-oriented than other players," is how CharlesWendel, a banking consultant interviewed by The Banker, explainedthe traditional credit union lead in customer satisfaction. Creditunions continue to gain converts at a healthy pace, according tothe survey, with 8% of bank customers saying they have opened acredit union account over the past year, up from 5% last year. Themost fertile age group for credit unions was the 25-to-34 group,with 16% of respondents saying they opened a credit union accountlast year. The least fertile was the 18-to-24 group, with just 3%opening credit union accounts. It is the 20th year in a row thatcredit unions have topped the banks in the customer satisfactionsurvey.

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