In 2010, Metro Bank London earned itself the distinction of being the first new high-street retail bank to obtain licensure from the UKâ€™s Financial Services Authority in over 150 years. Just five short years later, they are a multi-billion dollar enterprise with over thirty established branches.
How did they do it? Quite simply, theyâ€™ve provided their patrons with a degree of uncommonly exceptional customer service that their competitors have thus far been unable to match.
Founder Vernon Hill, a banker who had already had great success at the helm of New Jersey based Commerce Bank, was savvy enough to recognize the competitive edge that industry-leading customer service techniques could net for his company. Hill has since set out to provide his clientele with a host of non-traditional services designed to surprise and delight.
Each Metro Bank branch features a coin counting machine that allows customers to sort and deposit change directly into their bank accounts. A pet-friendly policy calls for the provision of complementary water and dog biscuits for the four-legged companions of bank patrons. The bank provides quotes of just fifteen minutes to open a bank account, and each branch is open for nearly 80 hours a week.
With all these remarkable customer service protocols in place, itâ€™s hard to imagine why anyone would bring their business to one of Metro Bankâ€™s competitors. Over the course of the past five years, Vernon Hillâ€™s bank has successfully leveraged its customer service skills to grow its business exponentially. In 2014 alone their assets grew by a staggering 94%.
Why strive for outstanding customer service? The numbers speak for themselves.
In 2013, the Institute of Economic Affairs honored Hillâ€™s achievements with the prestigious Free Enterprise Award, calling him â€œa breath of fresh air,â€ and â€œa remarkable entrepreneur who has identified a clear opportunity and entered the UK banking scene at a time when the sector has been under constant fire.â€
Stay tuned for more updates from John Tschohl, founder and president of the Service Quality Institute.