Monzo scores lowest in MSE survey - what's gone wrong?

From Money Saving Expert:

First Direct top in our banking service poll.
Last week, we asked you to vote in our twice-annual banking customer service poll, and more than 3,400 people responded. Of the banks that received 100+ votes, First Direct came top with 90% of its customers rating it ‘great’ and just 4% ‘poor’. Surprisingly, Monzo - which won the last poll - took the wooden spoon with 43% rating it ‘poor’. Next worst was Santander with a 21% ‘poor’ rating.

Here’s the survey.

A few things to note:
-The sample size is small per bank (so Monzo was rated by 152 people)
-There’s a high poor and great rating, and low ok rating. Marmite effect? Monzo is doing some things very well, but annoying enough people with the things it’s getting wrong
-The x axis varies per bank, so it makes the bar charts hard to compare visually, which is annoying
-Starling got around 90% great

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Nothing can be read into this self-selecting, small sample size.


It was probably sent to the “MONZO STOLE MY MONIES” FB group and not to this forum this time!


It’s interesting that it’s dropped from top performer to lowest performer in six months. Which either suggests: fluctuation due to small sample size, or Monzo has done something wrong in the past six months. Or a combination of both.

I wouldn’t be surprised if it goes back to top/near top in the next survey.

However, there has been remarkable consistency for First Direct. It won every survey they ever did, until Monzo pushed them into second place.


FD is closed to new accounts right now. So existing customers are happy and stay I guess. Hard to screw that up. And they removed minimum requirements for keeping the account too.

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As much as you can blame this and that, Monzo’s customer service has gone down the toilet over the last 6 months (personally I believe longer) and doing the absolutely bare minimum with regards to helping customers during COVID-19 has contributed to it.

As much as we like to sugarcoat it here, it’s clear that people aren’t happy.


Unless you’re asking them 152 people to elaborate on why they answered that way then it’s all speculation, I’ve not looked at the results but I’m assuming there’s no breakdown like that about why that answer was scored

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It’s not as good as it used to be, for sure. But it’s not a total catastrophe. The biggest problem is speed of response.

I’m sure someone with a greater knowledge of statistics can likely explain that this distribution is suspect…

And I agree there’s been a shift in service vs a year ago but this doesn’t seem a balanced measure across a representative group of consumers

Why is it suspect? Why, when results don’t suit our opinions, do we jump to conspiracy theories?


It’s more that I wouldn’t expect a distribution of (representative) data to be shaped in the way this graph is.

Regardless of how I perceive the service to be, and my opinions on that, I’d expect a greater proportion of consumer would be in the OK box than are in this chart.

It’s not “jumping to conspiracy theories”, it’s more “would a ‘normal distribution’ result in a chart that looks like this”


Just off the top of my head wasnt there a few poor decisions around service recently that could have caused monzo to slip without the conspiracy theorys?

  1. Chat being harder to find
  2. Chat now having contact hours
  3. Being one of the slower banks to react to covid - overdraft/loan charges/holidays
  4. Overdraft charge changes from flat fee to %?

All valid reasons you could argue that the service offered by monzo has got worse over last few months as opposed to improving


I think it’s representative of the respondents being made up mostly of those very supportive of Monzo and those either upset by or unsupportive of Monzo. In that way, I’d say average users probably haven’t seen or responded to the poll in a significant number.

Edit: which I’d note can be fairly typical. People only leave reviews (or seek out banking polls) when they’re very happy or unhappy.


The distribution just means some people aren’t happy and others REALLY love the brand. I’d expect something similar for a brand like Apple.


I guess in the spirit of comparison - here is the last survey:

So from 91% happy to 53%, and 2% Poor to about 45%.

297 votes in Feb, vs about 160 this time.

It would be interesting to see both sets of data stacked against demographics, but certainly see a drop from MSE readers in 6 months.

I just don’t think the sample size is large enough to draw any inferences at all?

Debate on this is just conjecture.

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It’s a shame the MSE guy has such a prominent profile, given that he outputs crap like this.

Every time I see any mention of Monzo on that site or in the newsletters it tends to be negative. They seem to love Starling and not have much good to say about Monzo.

Also, how do they verify that the people who love/hate Monzo’s customer service are even customers/have experienced it?

I’ve been helping my family out with Monzo recently and had a few CS interations. They take a very long time to reply and calling them is pointless as the call just disconnects when they don’t answer the phone. Such a low score doesn’t surprise me at all.


You really can’t just decide it’s crap and assume those 152 people were all lying. It’s done on percentage. Those 152 people could have had a very bad experience. Do you not even consider it might be Monzo CS that caused this instead of Martin?

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