Washington Mutual claimed the honor with a Customer Loyalty Index (CLI) score of 8.09, compared to the industry average of 7.43. The financial institution distinguished itself further by being one of only a few national banks to score higher than its regional competitors.
The results were culled from a Satmetrix Powered opt-in study that was conducted via the phone and the Web of 140,000 potential respondents. The study began in Nov. 2000 and more than 26,000 individuals responded to questions that asked them to identify and rate companies in the financial services, communications, energy, healthcare, high technology, insurance and Internet fields.
Criteria for award consideration included a minimum number of responses, a top score higher than eight out of ten on the Satmetrix Systems' Customer Loyalty Index and a score significantly higher than the next competitor.
"At Washington Mutual, we've worked very hard to provide warm, personalized service for our customers. In fact, for most of our employees, compensation is based in part on the level of service they provide to their internal and external customers. Although there's always room for improvement, we're pleased our customers appreciate the service we provide them -- as this award shows," said Gail Shelly, senior vice president, Quality Service Management, Washington Mutual.
The high rate of customer satisfaction may be an attributing factor to the financial success of a company. "Based on our study, companies with top customer satisfaction scores have a P/E (price/earnings) ratio that is 9 percent higher on average, or $930 million in additional market valuation, than the companies with low scores," said Andre O. Schwager, CEO and president, Satmetrix Systems.
With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual is a national financial services company that provides a diversified line of products and services to consumers and small- to mid-sized businesses. Washington Mutual currently operates more than 2,300 consumer banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, consumer finance and financial services offices throughout the nation.
Headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., Satmetrix Systems provides a hosted technology platform that integrates with customer relationship management (CRM) modules and helps organizations anticipate customer needs and create experiences that build loyalty over time. Satmetrix products are used by leading worldwide companies, such as Cable & Wireless, Hewlett-Packard, Honda, Lucent Technologies, Network Associates and Siebel Systems.