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Ed ShoppeMystery Shop Report
By Ed Shoppe

The following is extracted from actual shops by the Harland Clarke mystery shopping team.

In my report last September, I wrote about how competitive frontline bankers and member service reps were. That random group happened to have very high scores. I thought I’d share what is behind our scores. While the information is from actual reports, names, pricing or product-specific information have been altered.



Service and Consultation Scores
  1. Did the employee have a positive attitude, smile and offer a friendly greeting to build rapport?
  2. Did the employee maintain good eye contact?
  3. Did the employee focus on your inquiry and offer information about your clue?
  4. Did the employee ask for your business?
  5. Did the employee use your name at least once during the conversation?

We typically supply notes and commentary with each score. These notes can be very descriptive. I’ve chosen some of the shorter samples (see scorecard below) to give you a glimpse.

Facility Scores
Two other categories of rating include observations about branch exteriors and interiors. These facility scores are derived from questions like these:

  1. Were the exterior and parking lot clean?
  2. Were the entry and windows clean?
  3. Were the brochure racks well stocked?
  4. Were the desks and workstations tidy?
  5. Was the transaction stand apparent?

Examples of facility scores and comments are shown below.

As the examples show, we use a battery of standardized questions to drive observations. This means our scores are derived fairly and consistently, allowing for comparisons among individuals, branches and over time. However, our mystery shoppers often “take you there” with their very descriptive notes and empirical data.

Service and Consultation Scorecard
Employee: Andre
Andre helped me quickly and made the process easy. His name was visible, he was dressed appropriately and he maintained good eye contact. As I walked up to him, he greeted me and asked how he could help me. I told him that I would like to open a new account. He did not ask questions about my needs or ask my name. He just simply said to take a seat and someone would be right with me. He offered a pleasant closing statement as I walked away.
Employee: Marjorie
Marjorie came over right away to greet me in the teller area. She introduced herself, confirmed my name and offered a handshake. She invited me to her desk and asked if she could help me open an account. She recommended checking and savings accounts and explained she would set up one day a month to make a transfer of as little as $10 from my checking account to my savings account. She said the accounts come with a free debit card and online banking. She said security was a priority and showed me how easy online banking was to use. She had me choose a PIN number and select a check design. She said the checks and debit card would arrive in seven to 10 days. She gave me a few of her business cards, thanked me and encouraged me to contact her if she could help with anything further. She was polite and professional and seemed genuinely interested in assisting me.
Facility Scorecard
Branch: 101 Main Street
The exterior was well maintained and free of litter. Parking was ample and convenient. The landscaping was well kept and also had a good appearance. The doors had the hours posted on them. There was one promotion for Bank Services next to the ATM. Inside I noticed two tellers and three representatives for loans,
new accounts or financial services. There wasn’t a rate board that I could see. There were promotions for checking account packages and rewards and discounts. There was also a promotion for home loans. The counters were clean and stocked. Pens were working and available. There were also brochures available and everything looked to be well maintained, clean and organized.
Branch: 1512 First Street
The branch had no parking lot of its own. Street parking on the west side was available but there were no spots free. Metered parking was available on the south side. The bank had no lobby available. There was one ATM machine inside the bank. There was some paper trash on the brown carpet inside the branch. One of the plants was shedding next to the transaction stand, which made it quite messy. Otherwise, the interior was clean and neat, if not a little worn looking. I could not locate any area containing brochures and posters; however, there was an electronic sign that advertised CD rates and other financial products.




























"Mr. E. Shoppe" personifies Harland Clarke's mystery shopping team. If you would like to find out how your financial institution stacks up against industry standard observations with your own tailored inquiries, please contact your Harland Clarke account executive or vist us at