Study by Pitchfork Partners & MHP says India’s financial services hit a trust high

The Financial Services Reputation Index (India Report) researches and analyses how the financial sector is viewed by customers and other stakeholders

by exchange4media Staff
Published - Jan 29, 2019 12:44 PM Updated: Jan 29, 2019 12:44 PM
Pitchfork Partners

According to a study by Pitchfork Partners, a Mumbai-based communication strategy consultancy, and MHP, a global communication consultancy, an overwhelming majority in India felt that the financial services sector’s reputation was strong. In the Financial Services Reputation Index (FSRI) India Report, the study was conducted across Asia and similar reports were drawn up for various countries. It showed that payment systems were rapidly gaining acceptance with 91 per cent saying they were positive about them.

Banks, despite the turbulence they have faced over the past few years, made a strong showing – 89 per cent of the respondents were positive about them while 75 per cent said bankers were the most trustworthy among six professions that also included lawyers, property agents, journalists, politicians and policemen.

Jaideep Shergill, co-founder, Pitchfork Partners, said, “Increased regulation and competition across Asia have raised consumer trust in financial services, but most consumers would like to see even more transparency.” Indeed, when asked what Indian financial services companies can do to enhance their reputations, improved customer service (23 per cent) and transparency (20 per cent) ranked the highest.

Data security emerged as a major fear with 25 per cent of the respondents saying they were concerned about their data being stolen.

“In this day and age, data security is a natural concern – even more so than promised performance and results. This comes as no surprise given the number of high-profile data breaches across the region in the past year,” Shergill said.

Business intelligence firm ORC International conducted the research for the FSRI report. It included one-on-one interviews with prominent CEOs/CMOs/CCOs and a survey of 1,000 consumers in each market.

The study showed that HDFC Group and public sector behemoth State Bank of India were the most trusted Indian financial services brands. New-age, technology-led brands like Paytm and Paypal also featured in the top 10.

Respondents were interested also in the social responsibility aspects of financial services firms – 78 per cent said that while selecting a company it mattered that it was a responsible one; 75 per cent said they wanted the companies to give back to the community in some way.
    
“The FSRI findings provide a positive moment to reflect on how far the industry has come over the past decade. More importantly, they highlight what the industry should focus on to cement its reputation,” Shergill said.

You can access the full study here: http://pitchforkpartners.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/FSRI-India-Report-by-PItchfork-Partners.pdf

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