Axa gives IFAs the worst provider customer service, according to a survey by IFA support services firm Sesame.
Scottish Life and LV= join Axa at the bottom of the table of 21 providers, which Sesame will update twice yearly.
A spokesman for Axa says: “From Axa’s point of view, the survey coincided with a period when its service was impacted by A-Day volumes and the launch of its new pensions range. These issues are now being resolved and Axa is already working with Sesame to getting service up to the desired levels.”
Just Retirement topped the table. Skandia ranked a close second, followed by the Hartford, Friends Provident and Standard Life.
Sesame polled 341 IFAs among the network’s members and customers between January and April, who named up to five providers as either strong or poor performers. The network eliminated size bias from the table to avoid large providers gaining an advantage.
Sesame assessed four service areas: handling telephone calls; the ability to process and track new business; online systems and support and handling correspondence and sending post.
The research shows IFAs would like the person answering the call to take ownership of the enquiry, provide speedy access to information, quicker underwriting processes, and single person contact within the processing team.
Steve Young, commercial director of Sesame, says he does not expect an instant turnaround in customer service and doubts all providers will get it right. He says: “Customer service isn’t a destination, it’s a journey. You’ve got to keep making sure you develop.”
Sesame will publish an updated survey in December.
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Have your say:
"I agree with Sesame that the customer service from AXA has been very poor.
But...I am interested as to whether or not Friends Prov would ever be allowed to feature low down the list?"
Adrian Shandley is managing director of Premier Wealth Management.
"What about Sesame’s service to its members. Pot & Kettle spring to mind."
Harry Bowman is an IFA at Portlethen Independent Financial Services.
"As an ex- appointed representative of AXA I wholeheartedly agree with Sesame’s assessment of AXA. There seems to be a systemic failure within their administration and management systems which has led to the sorry state of affairs where the once highly respected Sun Life has fallen from top of the tree to the bottom."
Stuart Raber is an IFA at SRFM Paramount.IFAonline
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