The Net Promoter Score® of Your Credit Union

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No matter the field, when it comes to customer service, the customer experience team at almost every organization is obsessed with boosting the overall Net Promoter Score® (NPS®). So, what is it? Is it important? Is it the only metric you should be measuring? Most of all, how does it affect credit unions, and what are some of the ways to gauge and boost your credit union's score? In this article, we'll cover these topics plus a few more.

What is a Net Promotor Score®?

For many organizations, the Net Promoter Score® is a good way to gauge customer satisfaction. While the idea of providing excellent customer service isn't new, comparatively speaking, trying to measure the effectiveness of your customer experience (CX) efforts is.

The idea of Net Promoter Score® first gained traction in 2002. Around that time, an article published in Harvard Business Review popularized the concept of administering an easy, one-question survey to clients, asking them to rate their experience with the surveying organization numerically. Customer experience teams were told to boost their scores if they wanted customers to keep doing business with their organizations.

How Do You Calculate NPS®?

As mentioned, a Net Promoter Score® is measured with a single-question survey usually administered soon after an exchange with the organization. Responding members answer the question on a scale from 0 to 10 - the higher the score, the better. From the responses, you get three categories of members:

  • Promotors rank you a 9 or 10. These are the members likely to recommend you to others.
  • Promotors rank you a 7 or 8. These are satisfied members but wouldn't likely recommend you to anyone.
  • Promotors rank you a 6 or below. These are unhappy members who would likely actively discourage others from becoming members.

Finding your credit union's Net Promoter Score® is easy. Just subtract the percentage of Detractors from the portion of Promoters. For example, if 15% of respondents are Detractors, 20% are Passives and 65% are Promoters, your Net Promoter Score® would be 65-15 = 50. An organization's NPS® can fall anywhere between -100 to +100. Most credit unions average +50 or higher overall - a high bar considering some of the best-known brands in the world such as Apple have an NPS that hovers only in the high 40s.

Is NPS® Important? What About Member Experience Scores (MES)?

Should a credit union member experience team be interested in boosting its NPS®? Yes, but the answer is also a little more complicated than that. Gauging your credit union's NPS® is one of the best ways to take the pulse of your organization's member satisfaction level. It is also a good way to assess member loyalty. However, think of it as just one tool in your member experience satisfaction-measuring toolbelt.

NPS® is important, but so is another metric referred to as the Customer Effort Score (CES). In the digital age, customers want to have easy transactions with you and your business. Credit unions are no exceptions. It's incredibly important for credit unions to make it easy for members to interact with their services.

CES - or the Member Effort Score (MES) in the case of credit unions - is a cross-industry Key Performance Indicator (KPI). For credit unions, MES examines the effort that members must exert to interact with the credit union or one of its financial offerings.

In a single-question MES survey, similar to an NPS® survey, the recipient may be asked, "How easy was it to join our credit union?," or "How easy was the loan application process?"

The standard response scale is 1-7 and it provides a way to identify and monitor difficulties at every touchpoint for the member's journey with the credit union. Historically, better Member Effort Scores have shown a willingness on the part of the member to engage with more financial offerings from the credit union.

When used as part of a blended scorecard approach, NPS® and MES together are incredibly helpful in not only understanding the sentiment, advocacy, and loyalty of a member, but also uncovering the 'why' behind the scores.

How MemberXP Can Help?

More and more organizations that are getting serious about proper benchmarking and goal setting as a way of improving the member experience are investing in customer service experience platforms to administer surveys and tally their results. While several of these platforms exist, MemberXP, specifically, is a SaaS provider offering a suite of tools geared towards helping credit unions effectively gauge and manage member experiences. For example, the MemberView tool from MemberXP allows credit union member experience teams to track their scores for member experiences as well as for specific experiences such as lending.

At MemberXP, we take a credit union's NPS® and MES and benchmark them against others in the industry for every experience and member touchpoint we measure. This information provides context and visibility for growth and is a valuable benchmark for setting goals. Both KPIs are drillable to region, branch, coach, and can be viewed by member demographics, all within the powerful tool.

For questions about how MemberXP can help your credit union achieve its marketing objectives or to request a demo, visit

*Net Promoter Score is a trademark of Satmetrix, Bain & Company, and Fred Reichfield.

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