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Net Promoter® News: United Airlines, National Australia Bank (NAB), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA)

United Airlines ties $500,000 CEO bonus to customer satisfaction results

We have all read and seen the news and videos regarding United Airlines’ recent customer service debacle. For those of you who have not been tuned in, the American airline went through a customer service fiasco after asking four of their passengers to get off the the overbooked plane. Three of the passengers got off voluntarily, but the fourth one, a doctor, did not. What followed was that the passenger was physically removed from the aircraft, shocking everyone on the plane. Naturally, the startled people took out their phones and filmed the whole scene. Within hours the United Airlines story went viral. Here’s a lesson for all companies: your employees are being watched all the time by customers. That is why you need to pay high attention to the customer service you offer.

Let’s dig a little deeper on United Airlines’ customer advocacy, NPS and “drag & drop” debacle plans.

The American airline collects about 8,000 customer surveys on items such as legroom and the quality of in-flight coffee every day. According to, United Airlines has an NPS of 10, showing a very low number of promoters and high numbers of detractors. Compared to other airlines like Southwest NPS = 62, jetBlue NPS = 68 and KLM NPS = 43, United Airlines’ NPS is far from positive. Further confirmation of United’s customer satisfaction levels comes from researcher J.D. Power who in 2016 rated United last of traditional North American carriers.

[caption id="attachment_20459" align="aligncenter" width="895"]Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 13.41.19 United Airlines NPS = 10[/caption]


What we also found particularly interesting is the fact that United Airlines ties $500,000 of CEO Oscar Munoz’s annual bonus to customer satisfaction questionnaires. The manhandling of United’s passenger and the customer service received from all passengers on that overbooked flight does not seem to help the CEO’s bottom line.

Imagine how easily United’s viral flight story could have been avoided if another $500 were offered as an incentive to get off the plane! By handling the overbooked situation in a more customer friendly manner, United’s passengers receiving their ‘tell us about your trip,” email survey would have had less complaints to share.

National Australia Bank (NAB) Commits to NPS Transparency

In some interesting news come from the banking sector in Australia, Roy Morgan Research' latest data shows that in the six months to February 2017, satisfaction with banks overall was 81.9%. This result is only 1.0% point lower than than the 20-year high of 82.9% recorded in 2015. One of Australia's biggest banks caught our attention. In a recent press release, National Australia Bank (NAB)'s newly appointed CEO Mike Baird stated that his most important metric will be the "net promoter score". More importantly, NAB has released plans to incorporate NPS into the bank's DNA by increasing the level of disclosure around NPS. The bank is planning on briefing their institutional investors and regulators about the increased use of the metric and to "show them the link to results and growth". We encourage all NPS practitioners to read our whitepaper Next Generation Net Promoter, which goes into best practices on linking NPS and revenue growth.

NAB will use their NPS to quickly identify customer problems with individual branches. What was great to learn was that this year alone, thanks to NPS, NAB has been able to identify and change 55 "pain points" for customers, including loosening requirements when customers come to a branch to collect a new debit or credit card.

Angela Mentis, CCO for the business and private bank, said the system has helped to improve customer communication within servicing teams saving 17,000 hours a year.

Thanks to we managed to also find NAB's NPS score. The Australian bank has an NPS of -10, but has shown real commitment to the NPS program and moving that score up.

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 15.50.08

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) Achieves Highest NPS

Out of the four biggest Australian banks, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has achieved the biggest NPS increase over the last four years, taking their score from -10 to -3 (2.7 = 3). CBA's NPS performance is well ahead of NAB NPS = -10, ANZ NPS = -13 and Westpac NPS = -15. According to Roy Morgan Research, ANZ and CBA have shown the biggest improvement in terms of customer advocacy.

We went a little bit further to find out what CBA has worked on in the last couple of years to drive their NPS up. Improved customer service across multiple channels and leveraging data to better the customer experience are among the few initiatives taken by CBA.



We hope you enjoyed this week's Net Promoter® News! We couldn't be more happy that more companies like NAB are starting to think about linking NPS to revenue growth.

With that in mind, make sure you read our groundbreaking whitepaper, Next-Generation Net Promoter® - How to Monetize a Net Promoter System® and Create Profitable Growth! Definitely a must-download if you want to take your NPS program to the next level! 


Next Up: Monetizing a Net Promoter System®: Adam Dorrell Joins Amazing Business Radio

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