Using data that has been published on most banks and building societies websites, Moneyfacts.co.uk has been looking at how quickly these institutions complete everyday customer requests. Our analysis is based on information that many UK banks and building societies publish quarterly on their websites. It should be noted that this is not a ‘whole of market’ comparison as several banks don’t currently volunteer this information. However, our analysis below is a good indicator and serves to illustrate that while most banks do a few things in excellent time, each has their own strengths and areas where improvement is evidently needed.

Most noticeable is that a good proportion of the traditional high street names in banking are failing to impress, often being placed in the middle or even towards the low-end of the table for several very common customer services. However, it should be noted that this isn’t a universal trend: Nationwide Building Society is seen as a traditional provider but it’s mutual ethos and focus on customers shines through in the results.

The newer “challenger” banks tend to lead the way in terms of speedy service – especially when it comes to digital processes and tasks. When comparing the old guard and the up and coming banking firms it’s often the more modern and forward-looking firms which display excellent customer service.

 

Provider

A/C open average time (days)

Get debit card average time (days)

Get internet banking average time (days)

Get overdraft average time (days)

Replace lost card average time (days)

B*

1

4

0

7

5

Bank of Ireland

1

10

6

6

7

Bank of Scotland

0

5

1

0

3

Barclays

1

4

4

8

3

Clydesdale Bank

1

4

0

5

4

The Co-operative Bank

6

4

4

0

4

Danske Bank

7

4

3

8

5

first direct

7

6

6

0

3

First Trust Bank

1

7

12

11

5

Halifax

0

5

2

0

3

HSBC UK

1

6

2

0

3

Lloyds Bank

0

5

2

0

3

M&S Bank

15

6

9

0

3

Metro Bank

0

1

0

0

0

Monzo Bank

1

3

0

N/A

2

Nationwide Building Society

0

8

8

3

6

NatWest

1

3

8

0

4

Royal Bank of Scotland

1

3

8

0

4

Santander

0

7

7

0

4

Smile

5

4

4

0

4

Starling Bank

1

3

N/A

1

3

Tesco Bank

7

0

0

0

6

TSB

0

7

0

3

7

Ulster Bank

1

3

8

0

4

Yorkshire Bank

1

4

0

5

4

Where can I open a bank account on the same day?

Opening an account is surely the most basic of banking needs so it’s encouraging to see that the Nationwide Building Society and Starling Bank lead the pack, with 100% of accounts opened on the same day as the application. Bank of Scotland, Halifax, Lloyds Bank, Metro Bank and Monzo Bank all come a close second with 95% or higher hitting this target. However, disappointingly seven of the banks failed to ever do this – making customers wait for at least 24 hours and, quite frequently, up to a week or more to open an account.

This infographic shows which banks open can a bank account on the same day based on data from Moneyfacts.co.uk.

When will my new bank card arrive?

Tesco Bank still leads the pack when it comes to receiving a debit card on the same day as opening a new account, achieving this an enviable 100% of the time. Only Metro Bank comes close to this, succeeding in supplying a new card on the same day some 78% of the time, while Danske Bank accomplishes this 43% of the time. Monzo Bank, NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland, Ulster Bank and Starling Bank can take up to three days on average. Unfortunately for new customers the remaining banks – including many high street and the newer challenger banks – can take between four and an astonishing 10 days to issue a debit card.

How fast can I get online banking?

A few banks stand out as the clear leaders when it comes to internet banking: B, Clydesdale Bank, Monzo Bank, Yorkshire Bank, Metro Bank and Tesco Bank all boast same-day access to online banking 100% of the time. other providers can take considerably longer – one even as long as 12 days – which Is not great if you need to hit the ground running after opening a new account.

How quickly can I setup an overdraft?

When it comes to overdrafts eight of the banks and building societies listed will take longer than a day to give you a decision and provide funding – some of these taking up to a surprising 11 days. Happily, the majority of providers will only take a single day to set up a simple overdraft, which makes this pretty much the minimum acceptable level of service.

Replacement times for lost or stolen cards

In the category for replacing lost or stolen debit cards Metro Bank is the clear winner with an excellent service score of providing a new card the same day 94% of the time. However, it should be noted that 22 of the banks who provided data never replaced a lost or stolen card the same day. These banks can take between 2 and an incredible 7 working days to send you a replacement debit card – bad news indeed if you are one of the majority of people who operate a largely cashless lifestyle.

This infographic shows how many banks can replace a lost debit card on the same day based on data from Moneyfacts.co.uk.

Traditional high street banks vs. challenger banks

The above can sometimes make for surprising reading – in fact, the customer service averages for some long-standing banks can be distinctly lacking when it comes to a simple thing such as opening a new account, obtaining an overdraft or simply being issued with a debit card. This tends to reinforce the idea that the larger, more well-known banks can be rather complacent when it comes to providing excellent service to individual customers. On the other hand, smaller, emerging banks are clearly better focused on differentiating themselves from their larger competitors with higher standards of responsive and innovative banking services. Certainly, when it comes to speed of service they are starting to challenge the dominance of the big high street names – and this is no bad thing for ordinary customers.

Looking to open a new bank account?

Customers who are considering opening a new bank account or moving to a different bank or building society would be well advised to review the performance standards of all the banks they are considering. In this way they can be sure that they will be getting the service experience they expect. And if a bank doesn’t display these statistics or hides them in a remote corner of their website? Well, you can draw your own conclusions about what exactly it is they are hiding…

For more information on the twice-yearly bank service quality data, including details of where to find the league tables, please see our guide to how satisfied are customers with their banks.

This infographic shows how fast banks can provide new services such as new debit cards, opening a new banking account and arranging an overdraft. Based on data from Moneyfacts.co.uk.

Moneyfacts.co.uk has over 30 years’ experience analysing financial data. If you would like data for your publication or are interested in finding more about the data we hold please contact our Online Reporter, Derin Clarke on dclarke@moneyfacts.co.uk

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