Mystery Shopping Results Banks December 2023

As well as the Call Centre Ranking results below, ACXPA Members also have access to a range of additional insights, including all the monthly reports, trend data, additional performance metrics, a downloadable spreadsheet and lots more!

Learn more about our Membership Options >

Australian Banks December 2023 Call Centre Rankings

This is our fifth consecutive month of assessing the performance of call centres in the Australian Banking Sector, which first commenced in August 2023.

Each month, we conduct mystery shopping calls to a minimum of six different Banks across Australia to assess their performance posing as real customers and assess both accessibility (how easy it was to connect) and the customer service/quality of the interaction when speaking to a live agent across 48 different performance metrics.

You can read more about the assessment criteria and methodology here >

Just scroll below for additional insights or use the links below to jump directly to a section.

How to View the Call Centre Ranking Data

General Public

Quarterly reports for each industry sector containing summary information.

ACXPA Subscribers

Receive alerts when we publish new Call Centre Ranking reports (you can select by industry sector) plus gain access to other exclusive subscriber-only information.

ACXPA Members

Download a monthly report for each industry sector containing summary results for three random businesses, and view YTD trend data for each sector.

Plus, you'll gain access to all the incredible ACXPA Membership benefits from live Member Symposiums, Members Directory, a Video Library of expert videos, Exclusive downloads and templates, 25% off our premium training courses and lots more!

Individual Memberships are just $197 per year, and Business Memberships start at $497 (including five individual memberships you can allocate).

Contact Centre CX Benchmarking Program

The ultimate insights for your business! You'll receive:

  • Monthly data for ALL the contact centres we assess in your nominated industry sector.
  • Six mystery shopping calls to your business, including call recordings, the assessor notes and your scores against each of the 48 metrics.
  • Benchmarking data for any five competitors/businesses that YOU nominate.
  • Quarterly trend reports for your business, personalised recommendations to help you improve performance and lots more!

Starting from just $1,197 per month.

How to View the Call Centre Ranking Data

, as an ACXPA Member, you can download a monthly report for each industry sector containing summary results for three random businesses and view YTD trend data for each sector.

If you want to gain the ultimate insights for your business and industry sector, purchase the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking, and you'll receive:

  • Monthly data for ALL the contact centres we assess in your nominated industry sector.
  • Six mystery shopping calls to your business, including call recordings, the assessor notes and your scores against each of the 48 metrics.
  • Benchmarking data for any five competitors/businesses that YOU nominate.
  • Quarterly trend reports for your business, personalised recommendations to help you improve performance and lots more!

Starts from just $1,197 per month.  Learn more >

How to View the Call Centre Ranking Data

Please log into an Individual ACXPA Membership account to access the full Call Centre Ranking data!

Call Centre Rankings Key:

POOR

BELOW STANDARD

MEETS STANDARDS

EXCEEDS STANDARD

OUTSTANDING

Banks Overall Rankings (December 2023)

The Overall Score Rankings provide insights into the Contact Centres we assessed as being the best in the Australian Banking sector.

Each mystery shopping call we make is assessed against 48 different criteria, and the calls are made by our local (Australian-based) trained assessors at random times and days throughout the month.

The Overall Score is determined by combining the two primary component scores below and applying some proprietary weightings that place a higher emphasis on the quality of the interaction:

  • Accessibility Score – measures the experience of connecting to a live contact centre agent.
  • Quality Score – measures the experience of the interaction with a contact centre agent.

Key Findings – Overall Scores, Banks (December 2023)

Following the August, September, October and November results, the Banks were again rated as ‘Poor’ for the fifth consecutive month in December 2023 as assessed against the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards with an overall score of 45.0%, albeit this is the best result the sector has received since we began reporting with an 11.7% improvement from the previous month.

For context, the mystery shopping scenarios we used in December were for new business/revenue-generating opportunities for the banks.

  • The overall scores for each bank ranged from 23.4% (Bendigo Bank) to 59.4% (NAB), with NAB being the top-rated bank for December 2023 and the leader for the previous three consecutive months.
  • Accessibility scores (how easy it was to get through to a live person) across the Australian banking sector was their best result to date,  moving from four consecutive months of ‘Poor’ to ‘Below Standard’ for the first time with a score of 47.3%, ranging from 28.4% (Commonwealth Bank) to 69.9% (NAB), who has been rated the easiest bank to access for the previous five months (since we began reporting).
  • The Quality of customer service continues to be low across the sector (rated ‘Below Standard’) with a score of 58.3%, ranging from 45.4% (Bendigo Bank) to 74.6% (NAB).
  • Across the banking sector, 33% of calls we made were not answered in December 2023 within our 10-minute threshold. Only one bank, NAB, answered 100% of the mystery shopping calls we made, and they are the only bank that has achieved 100% of calls answered in the past three consecutive months.  Conversely, Bendigo Bank has failed to answer 66% of our mystery shopping calls for five consecutive months.
  • Average wait times across all Banks decreased to their lowest-ever result in December 2023 with an average wait time of 03:55 minutes, a decrease of 01:16 minutes from the November 2023 results.
  • Westpac had the lowest average wait time for the month of December (00:18 minutes), the third consecutive month of being the quickest to answer of all banks.
  • CBA had the longest wait times (06:41 minutes), just marginally ahead of ANZ (06:30 minutes).
  • Of the five Quality Competencies we assess using the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards, the ‘Engage’ competency was the lowest rated at 27.8% for the second consecutive month, with banks continually failing to build rapport with customers, take ownership and provide a personalised experience. With the Engage Competency, scores ranged from 0% (ANZ) to 62.5% (Westpac).
  • All banks had a minimum of two IVR layers (press one for this, two for that), which took, on average, an additional 00:49 minutes to navigate (-00:05 minutes from November). ANZ was the quickest (00:32 minutes), and CBA was the longest (01:36 minutes).
  • In addition to the lengthy menu options, banks also subjected customers to lengthy pre and post-IVR recorded messages, adding an additional 00:48 minutes to each call (+ 00:02 minutes from November), with CBA having the longest with 01:20 minutes.
  • Talk time averaged 04:54 minutes across all banks, ranging from 03:00 minutes to 09:18 minutes.
Overall Scores December 2023
Banking Sector
1st:NAB59.4%
2nd:Westpac56.0%
3rd:ING48.1%
Lowest:Bendigo Bank23.4%
Banking Sector Average45.0%

Banks Accessibility Rankings (December 2023)

The Call Centre Accessibility Rankings are designed to assess the ease of the phone experience for customers who want to speak to a live person to discuss their banking requirements.

The Call Centre Accessibility Score measures the experience before interacting with a live agent, with our assessment including 30 individual elements grouped into five core components: Search, Design, Ease, Audio and Timing (along with deductions for calls not being answered within thresholds, technical glitches, etc).

Elements included are queue wait times, how easy it was to find the phone number, ease of menu options (i.e. press 1 for this, 2 for that), hold music, audio quality, etc.

Mystery Shopping calls to Banks are terminated if wait times exceed 10:00 minutes. If any call wait time exceeds 10 minutes, the maximum threshold time of 10 minutes is applied to calculate average wait times (meaning actual wait times would be higher than reported).

ACXPA Members can access the number of calls exceeding the 10-minute threshold in their summary download report. 

Key Findings – Accessibility & Average Wait Times, Banks (December 2023)

Overall, the Accessibility of Banks was rated as ‘Below Standard’ with a score of 47.3%, a increase of 9.7% from the November 2023 results, and the highest score since we commenced reporting in August 20423.

  • Only one bank (NAB) was assessed as ‘Met Standards’ for Accessibility with a score of 69.9%, the only bank that has been assessed as ‘Met Standards’ every month since we commenced reporting.
  • Despite the banking sector’s improved results, two banks (CBA & Bendigo) were still rated as ‘Poor’.
  • Average Wait Time for the Banks decreased by 01:16 minutes compared to the November 2023 results, with an average wait time of 03:55 minutes in December 2023, the lowest average wait time since we commenced the reports in August 2023.
  • CBA was the lowest-rated bank for Accessibility in December 2023, with a score of 28.4% – the second consecutive month they have had the lowest rating.
  • Banks failed to answer 33% of the mystery shopping calls we made within 10 minutes,  again potentially costing them millions of dollars in lost opportunities.
  • NAB is the only bank that has achieved 100% of calls answered since we commenced reporting in August 2023.
  • Bendigo Bank again only answered 33% of the calls we made.  This is the fifth consecutive month they have not answered 66% of the calls we made, the only bank that this has happened to.
  • Westpac again achieved the quickest average wait time in December 2023, with a 00:18-minute average wait time. This is the third consecutive month they have been the quickest to answer calls.
  • After having the longest wait time in November 2023 (07:32 minutes), CBA had the biggest decrease in wait times, reducing by 03:56 minutes to 03:36 minutes.
  • Bendigo Bank had the longest wait time average in December 2023, with 06:41 minutes (however, as two calls were not answered within 10 minutes when we disconnected, the actual wait times would have been significantly longer).
  • On average, across all the banks, an additional 00:49 minutes was required to navigate the Bank’s IVR menu options, with CBA taking the longest at 01:36 minutes.
  • In addition to the time it requires customers to navigate the menu and wait for the call to be answered, banks also add substantial time to each call with pre-recorded messaging that customers are forced to listen to, adding an additional 00:48 minutes to each call (an increase of 00:02 minutes from November).  ANZ had the longest recorded messages with 01:20 minutes.
  • Talk time across all Banks again averaged 04:54 minutes (same in November 2023), ranging from 03:00 minutes to 09:18 minutes.
Accessibility Scores December 2023
Banking Sector
1st:NAB69.9%
2nd:ING50.8%
3rd:ANZ50.6%
Lowest:CBA28.4%
Banking Sector Average47.3%

View YTD Data >

Average Wait Times December 2023
Banking Sector
1st:Westpac00:18
2nd:NAB01:20
3rd:CBA03:36
Longest:BENDIGO06:41
Banking Sector Average03:55

View YTD Data >

Banks Quality Rankings (December 2023)

Whilst average wait times are typically longer for the banks than other industry sectors, it’s still what happens during the call that can have a large influence on the satisfaction of the customer. 

Recent CX Statistics continue to highlight the importance of the live interaction with a customer service employee, and the preference to speak to a live agent rather than an automated chatbot/AI etc.

The Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards have been developed and refined over 30 years, and when businesses consistently achieve high ratings in these core competencies, there is a direct correlation to improved business metrics however you measure them – Sales Conversions, NPS, Customer Effort Score, improved efficiency, reduced AHT etc.

The standards apply to all contact centres and are adapted to customer service or sales calls.

Quality is assessed across five core competencies and 18 call-handling behaviours that directly correlate to better customer and business outcomes: Engage, Discover, Educate, Close, Energy.

Learn more about the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards >

Key Findings – Quality Scores, Banks (December 2023)

When assessed against the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards, the banking sector was again assessed as ‘Below Standard’ for Quality with score of 58.3%, an improvement of 10.1% from the November 2023 score of 48.2%.

Quality Scores December 2023
Banking Sector
1st:Westpac74.6%
2nd:CBA63.8%
3rd:ING61.3%
Lowest:BENDIGO45.4%
Banking Sector Average58.3%

View YTD Data >

  • Westpac was the top-ranked bank for Quality in December 2023, with a score of 74.6% (‘Met Standard’).
  • Westpac was the most improved from the previous month, with an increase of 35.2% (39.4% to 74.6%).
  • Bendigo Bank had the largest decrease in their score, down 3.7% to 45.4%, the lowest of all banks.
  • Of the five quality competencies we assessed, collectively, the banks were rated ‘Poor’ for ‘Engage’, ‘Below Standard for ‘Discover’ and ‘Met Standard’ for ‘Educate’, ‘Close’ and ‘Energy’.
  • ‘Close’ was the best-rated competency in December 2023 with a score of 75.0%.
  • The lowest rated quality competency was ‘Engage’ with a score of 27.8%.
  • Of the four elements we assessed within the ‘Engage’ competency, ‘Bridge’ was the poorest-rated element, with five out of the six banks we assessed scoring 0%. Only one bank, Westpac, was rated as ‘Below Standard’.
  • Training is available for all Banks to improve their customer service quality (View: frontline employees courses and Team Leader courses).

Additional information on the quality competency scores is available below (or you can click here to jump to the section).

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Banks Quality Competencies Summary (December 2023)

Breaking quality performance into five core competencies (and 18 individual metrics) enables you to identify strengths and weaknesses that can be used for coaching to improve the agent’s performance.

ACXPA Members can download summary results for each quality competency for three random Internet Providers each month.

If you purchase the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking reports, you will see the data for ALL Internet Providers each month.

As an ACXPA Member, you can see the summary results for each quality competency in the report download (below).

If you purchase the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking reports, you will see the data for ALL Internet Providers each month.

We have training courses that can help both Team Leaders and frontline employees improve performance!

Quality - Engage Competency
Banking Sector December 2023
Highest:Westpac62.5%
Lowest:ANZ0%
Banking Sector AVE27.8%

Purchase more insights >

Quality - Discover Competency
Banking Sector December 2023
Highest:ANZ & Westpac66.7%
Lowest:Bendigo33.3%
Banking Sector AVE53.7%

Purchase more insights >

Quality - Educate Competency
Banking Sector December 2023
Highest:All Banks except ANZ75.0%
Lowest:ANZ50.0%
Banking Sector AVE70.8%

Purchase more insights >

Quality - Close Competency
Banking Sector December 2023
Highest:Westpac100%
Lowest:ANZ, Bendigo, ING & NAB66.7%
Banking Sector AVE75.0%

Purchase more insights >

Quality - Energy Competency
Banking Sector December 2023
Highest:ING87.5%
Lowest:ANZ50.0%
Banking Sector AVE72.9%

Purchase more insights >

Download the ACXPA Members Summary Report (Banks December 2023)

The ACXPA Members Summary Report for Banks December 2023 contains additional data exclusive for ACXPA Members, including the results for three random Banks each month.

Companies who purchase the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking service will see the FULL data for ALL Banks we assess.

You need an ACXPA Membership to see this exclusive data!

ACXPA Members gain instant access to additional Banking sector data, including detailed data for three random Banks each month, year-to-date data, and a range of additional ACXPA Membership benefits to ensure you have the leading insights, best-practice tips and more to help you succeed.

And if you purchase our Contact Centre CX Benchmarking,  you’ll see all banking sector data (including a minimum of five other Banks), receive the call recordings for your bank and get personalised tips to help your contact centre to improve your performance. Learn more >

Banks Call Centre Rankings Redacted December 2023

Additional member-only insights – join now and you’ll  instantly see data for three Banks, including: 

  • Calls Answered Percentage
  • IVR Navigation Time & Layers
  • Average Talk Times
  • Quality scores by each of the five different competencies
  • The scores for the four behaviours of the ‘Engage’ Quality Competency
  • Accessibility scores by each of the five different competencies
  • Access to all previous month’s data
  • Monthly Trend Results

ACXPA Memberships start from just $197 per year and are packed with value!

You’ll gain access to leading industry insights every month, live symposiums and workshops with leading contact centre experts, a library of expert videos on contact centres and CX best practices you can watch on demand, a range of downloadable resources, discounts to expert training courses, networking events and lots more.

 , thanks for being an ACXPA Member – view or download the report below!  

Banks December 2023

What type of scenarios do we use to conduct the Mystery Shopping calls?

We use enquiries that are general in nature that don’t require us to disclose personal information such as new customers looking for home loads, term deposits, credit cards etc.

How does the scoring work?

Over the past 30 years we’ve developed standards based on consumer preferences and the metrics that matter – the ones that can influence the customer experience.

You can learn more about the framework we use here >

How many calls are assessed?

For the public monthly report, we include at least three calls per Bank – more assessements are conducted if Banks purchased the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking service, (minimum of six calls assessed for every Bank included).

Larger sample sizes can also be purchased – please refer to our Customer Service Benchmarking service >

Real customers are not interested in sample sizes or the thousands of other calls handled by the call centre each day,  they only care about their call and will make all their judgements and decisions based on that one single experience.

And that’s what our Call Centre Rankings reports capture – what a random, real customer can and does experience.

How can we improve our score?

Our Mystery Shopping program has been designed to provide Banks with the insights they need to improve performance!

You’ll receive detailed information on your performance against over 48 individual elements so you know exactly where to focus, and we also include a quarterly report that provides you with personalised key recommendations on areas to focus on.

We also offer a range of training courses that can help teach your frontline employees the skills they need to deliver great customer service (Customer Service Phone ‘Essentials‘ & ‘Professional‘), as well as training courses for your Team Leaders/Managers so they know how to coach effectively using the Quality Framework to improve your performance (and scores!).

How do I get my Bank included?

If your Bank is not listed in our reports, by purchasing our Contact Centre CX Benchmarking service, your bank will then be automatically included in the monthly ranking reports.  Learn more >

How do I order the service?

We have an online ordering form that makes it easy to order the service, nominate the Banks you’d like to benchmark against, who you’d like the reports to be sent to etc. View the online order form >

How do I access the data for Banks?

ACXPA Business Members get full access to the summary monthly data for three random Banks (and other sectors) along with a host of other benefits which contains the data for three random Banks each month.

An ACXPA Business Membership starts from just $497 per year and includes five individual memberships you can allocate to key employees who could benefit from gaining access to leading industry insights for contact centres, customer experience (CX), digital service, and in-person customer service.

If you purchase the Contact Centre CX Benchmarking Service, you will gain access to ALL data from ALL Banks.

Is there someone I can speak to to learn more? 

Absolutely! If you’d like to speak to someone further about the Benchmarking Service, please get in touch with our General Manager of Quality Insights, Simon Blair – 0407 002 113 or [email protected]

What type of scenarios do we use to conduct the Mystery Shopping calls?

Questions about credit cards, home loans, savings accounts, term deposits etc – most of our scenarios are about new business opportunities for the Banks that don’t require us to disclose personal information.

Why do you hang up at either 10 or 15 minutes?

All our Mystery Shopping calls are conducted live by our accredited Mystery Shoppers who are all based in Australia. We cut off the calls at either 10 minutes (sales scenarios) or 15 minutes (service scenarios) for three key reasons:

  1. Research has shown that these wait times are towards the end of the typical times customers will wait before they hang up.
  2. It keeps it real! Real customers don’t care about sample sizes, whether it was a busy day for the call centre or that they had high sick leave etc – they only care about their experience when they called, and that’s what our Mystery Shopping is designed to reflect – real customer experiences.
  3. It’s expensive. As we use real human beings to conduct the Mystery Shopping call, it’s simply not practical to pay them often for hours (hello Centrelink!) whilst waiting for the call to be answered. So unless we get a very generous sponsor that enables us to wait the full time, we thought this was a reasonable decision.

Do the Banks really care about the service they provide?

We’d really like to say yes as it’s a highly competitive marketplace and research consistently shows that when customers aren’t happy, it’s bad for business.

But sometimes whether it’s through a lack of resources or skills, the customer experience that is delivered is well below expectations.

When banks focus on delivering a better customer experience, not only is it good for you, but it also helps make them more profitable so everyone wins.

How do I get my Bank included?

We encourage you to contact your Bank and ask them to ensure they are included. Just send them a link to this page!

Why does ACXPA publish results each month?

Our mission is to improve the level of customer experience in Australia so by publishing the results monthly, we’ll continue to ensure that Banks are accountable for the level of customer service they are providing.

What type of services does ACXPA offer?

In addition to the Mystery Shopping CX Benchmarking, we offer a range of services and resources for people working in contact centres, customer experience (CX), digital service and in-person customer service/retail. You can learn more about us here >

Purchase exclusive insights for your Bank

If you’d like to gain insights specifically for your contact centre performance, and benchmark your results against other Banks, we’ve got a new, cost-effective, fixed-price benchmarking service that makes it easy!

Starting from just $1,297 per month, by purchasing our Contact Centre CX Benchmarking Service, you’ll receive the following:

  • Six Mystery Shopping calls into your call centre each month at random times and days where you’ll receive the full assessment against 48 metrics, our quality assessor’s notes, the employee’s name (where provided) and the full call recordings.
  • Six Mystery Shopping calls each for any five banks you nominate, so you can benchmark your performance against other Banks that matter the most to you.
  • Aggregate data from all the other Banks we assess providing you with sector-wide results to further compare your results to.
  • A monthly email with data to track your performance along with the call recordings.
  • A quarterly report containing insights and trends that are easy to understand, along with actionable recommendations to help improve your performance.
  • An optional Quarterly Insights workshop for your team (conducted live via Zoom) that can provide additional insights, coaching and guidance.
  • Access to training to help you improve results.

CX Roundtables - Upcoming Guest

Live and interactive sessions for customer experience professionals in Australia.

Upcoming CX Roundtable Steven Arnold bw

Contact Centre Manager Roundtables - Upcoming Guest

Live and interactive sessions for contact centre professionals in Australia.

Upcoming Contact Centre Roundtable - Scott Wooden

Next Members Symposium Livestream: Tuesday, 21st May, 2024, 13:30 AEST

The Members Symposium sessions are only available to ACXPA Members! 

ACXPA Members can watch the symposium live, and, can watch any of the sessions at any time in their Video Library. 

Discover which membership is right for you >

Preview of upcoming Symposium Sessions:

Nadine Power, ACXPA National Advisory Board Member

IVR Best Practice

Over 90% of contact centres are using an IVR (Press 1 for this, press 2 for that), and we've encountered many contact centres with over four layers of options for customers to select from. In this session, Nadine will be sharing some best practice tips on IVR design for 2024.

Presented by Nadine Power, Chief Product Officer, Datagamz (and ACXPA National Advisory Board Member)

ACXPA National Advisory Board Member Simon Blair

Tips to Boost Engagement on Calls

Of the five quality competencies we assess as part of the Australian Call Centre Rankings, the 'ENGAGE' competency from the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards has consistently been at the bottom of the rankings throughout 2023 and into 2024.

In this session, Simon will provide some tips that can be shared with agents on how to increase engagement with customers at the start of calls.

Presented by Simon Blair, General Manager Quality Insights, ACXPA

More sessions announced soon! 

(If you're interested in speaking at one of our events, click here to learn more >)

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