Vanguard And Credit Unions Top Investment Experiences

In Forrester’s 2008 Customer Experience Index (CxPi), we ranked 113 companies across 12 industries. I recently published a snapshot of the investment industry looking at the results from the seven firms on the list (Charles Schwab, credit unions, Edward Jones, Fidelity, Merrill Lynch, Vanguard, and “other” full service brokers). Here’s some of what we found:

  • Experiences are “okay.” As a group, the seven firms ended up with an “okay” rating of 69%; a drop of three percentage points from the 2007 CxPi results.
  • Vanguard and credit unions lead the pack. With the only “good” scores on the list, Vanguard and credit unions ended up with a rating of 77%. Not only were these the highest rated investment firms, but they were also the only ones to show an improvement from 2007.
  • Merrill Lynch takes the bottom. With the only poor rating in the group, Merrill Lynch ended up with the lowest score. It also ended up with the largest drop from 2007, eight percentage points. Edward Jones’ decline wasn’t far behind, dropping seven points.
  • Enjoyability took a hit. Three of the four double-digit declines in the underlying CxPi elements were in the enjoyability components for Edward Jones, Merrill Lynch, and “other” full service brokers. The other large decline came in Merrill Lynch’s meeting needs score.

The bottom line: Investment firms should get bullish on customer experience

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I am a customer experience transformist, helping large organizations improve business results by changing how they deal with customers. As part of this focus, I examine strategy, culture, interaction design, customer service, branding and leadership practices. I am also a fanatical student of business, so this blog provides an outlet for sharing insights from my ongoing educational journey. Simply put, I am passionate about spotting emerging best practices and helping companies master them. And, as many people know, I love to speak about these topics in almost any forum. My “title” is Managing Partner of the Temkin Group, a customer experience research and consulting firm that helps organizations become more customer-centric. Our goal is simple: accelerate the path to delighting customers. I am also the co-founder and Emeritus Chair of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (, a non-profit organization dedicated to the success of CX professionals.

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