What First Samuel's clients think
Self-effacement is the usual W&D style. But...
First Samuel's clients have ranked the company among the best in Australia.
Readers will be aware that First Samuel undertakes an annual survey of all of its clients (conducted by independent research company yellowSquares Pty Ltd). Part of the survey is a question to assess clients' First Samuel experience. The statistical measure goes by a clumsy name of Net Promoter Score® .
Essentially it measures a client's willingness to recommend a business or service. Scores range from -100 to +100.
In FY-16 First Samuel's clients gave it a score of 69. This is a wonderful result, especially when put into perspective with results for other Australian companies.
W&D emphasises that care should be taken in interpreting the above results. See footnote .
One of the pleasing aspects is that, apart from a seeming aberrant FY-10, when the NPS was 29, in every year since 2009 the company's NPS has been greater than 40, averaging 52.
Client suggestions (and kicks in the shins)
Whilst the client survey results are very pleasing, as are some of the free form comments (see more below), there were some suggestions. As we do every year, W&D is happy to share all of these (with First Samuel's response in brackets):
- Would like a graphical summary of all SMSF and 2 share investments available for 3-5 years as opening each folder is tedious on line (Response: We are upgrading our on-line reporting system. Please email us with more specificity about your charting needs. Are you asking for individual security data for 3-5 years? Your tailored Annual Investment Review has charts of the performance of your combined portfolios since inception, both absolutely each year and versus your benchmark as a wealth index, as well as individual stock contribution for the past year and sector performance against each sector's benchmark).
- Interested to know more clearly about performance of my portfolio against the market - the best and worst performing and how FS performance compares. (See response, above)
- Ditch Eat Street and Art Centre functions. Add no value (Most clients enjoy these events. Eliminating them and passing the saving to clients would reduce fees by 0.009%).
- Increase product income (We balance yield and capital growth so as to optimise the long-term after-tax outcome. If you wish a yield-focused portfolio please let us know).
- Dont like new format of Wry and Dry. Moving to new page is slow and cumbersome. Old format was easier. The content is still enjoyed. (The 'scrolling' is just the next page re-loading. It's quicker than clicking on another button and manually re-loading).
- Poor response to computer incident on 2 Sep 16. An email to clients explaining the problem should have been the minimum response. (The failure of an externally sourced pricing-data feed early on a Saturday morning was remedied as soon as we were made aware of it. We placed a notice on our website immediately. Please understand that we do not have staff in the office on a Saturday morning to send emails to all clients about a pricing-data feed error. Client investments were not affected in any way and there was not any security risk).
- I would prefer fewer 'art' events, this is an extra I would prefer not to pay for. (See above response).
- An almost perfect manager of my wealth. I'd just like a better website reporting system. (We are working on this).
- ...the current presentation of Wry and Dry: provide a simple PDF file we can download and read at will and which provides easy access to individual sections at a later stage. We don't like the current presentation. (See previous response, above. Also, (a) the new arrangement is much easier to read on mobile devices, obviating the need to down load a PDF; (b) Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) doesn't work for PDFs; (c) we cannot readily manage the variable length of different articles using PDFs; and (d) to print W&D, just click on the print icon).
- Have CIO meetings either in the city or north western suburbs (We will investigate)
Client pats on the back
There were very many compliments, a small selection being...
- Keep up the good work. I have come to rely on you.
- Exceptionally good at personalised service.
- Investment performance and communication are at a very high level. Thank you.
- Provides good investment returns. Responsive to questions re. portfolio and investment climate. Proactive.
- Excellent work. I would recommend First Samuel to anyone (and have done so).
- We like the frequent communication from First Samuel, easy access on the web site for information about our investments, the regular CIO dinners at which we are told about our investments and the reasons for actions taken by First Samuel, the friendly and approachable staff and the social and cultural events.
- Totally happy with the service and expertise First Samuel gives, they always put their client first and perform everything that we request very well, which gives us a very contented feeling knowing that our super fund is in good hands.
 Net Promoter, NPS, and Net Promoter Score are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company, and Fred Reichheld.
 Some of the data is for an industry or industry-segment, and some for individual companies. First Samuel cannot verify the accuracy of any data other than its own. But the direction of the data seems correct. The scoring system (a client is either a promoter or detractor) means that longitudinal data can show significant variations for a small change in customer loyalty. Some companies selectively survey clients (First Samuel does not, all clients are surveyed): W&D is aware of a bank private bank that gave the surveying company a list of clients to survey, without telling its survey company that the only customers that were on list were (a) customers who had been worded up by the relevant Relationship Manager and (b) who were known to think well of the bank.