Bupa has ranked the worst provider for handling telephone calls and tracking new business in a customer service poll by IFA network Sesame.
Sesame polled 341 IFAs between January and April and will update its survey twice yearly.
Bupa scored -4.6 on a scale of -5 to five, followed closely by Axa with 4.5 points and Norwich Union with -4.4 points. Just Retirement scores the highest for handling telephone calls with 4.1 points. The Hartford and Bright Grey come second at four points each.
Bupa scored the lowest for tracking new business at 4.8, followed by LV= and Bright Grey with -4.7 points each. Friends Provident and Bright Grey top the table for tracking new business with 4.4 points. Sesame says the scores suggest Bright Grey provides inconsistent service to IFAS. Legal & General follows with 4.3 points.
Steve Casey, BUPA individual protection product and marketing manager at BUPA, says: "We are keen to work with Sesame to understand the results. In two of the areas that BUPA has low scores, there are a very low number of comments- 341 advisers sounds like a large number but there are only 10 who commented on adviser handling of phone calls and 12 for the ability to process and track new business.
"We are moving to a higher catergory for customer service and the ratings that we received from Defaqto were very positive."
Axa rated the worst for handling mail with -4.8 points, followed by Abbey, Aegon and Bright Grey with -4.7 points each.
Just Retirement scored the highest for handling mail with 4.7 points, followed by Scottish Widows with 4.6 points and Bright Grey with 4.5 points.
The survey also shows about 70% of IFAs consider it important a provider genuinely understands their business mix, the nature of their customers and their business’ objectives. A total of 25% of IFAs believe providers understand their business, compared to 18% in Sesame’s first survey in 2005.
Sesame says respondents generally agree their behaviour does not impact upon the level of service they receive. However, 34% believe advisers leave administration to the last minute or provide incomplete application forms.
The research shows IFAs spend less time chasing progress with their provider each week, down from 5.9 hours to 5.4 hours since 2005.
Earlier this month Sesame published its overall findings, which show IFAs believe Axa provides the worst service. Scottish Life and LV= join Axa at the bottom of the table of 21 providers.
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Service increasingly key
Aiming to be' top three' UK financial planner
Lowest measure since index launched in 1995
Complaints into double figures
Despite lower median annual earnings