App improved functionality?

Does anyone know if Nationwide are planning on updating their app to bring it more in line with what we can expect from other high street banks? Such as paying in cheques on phones, and being able to make new payees without your card reader? Something tells me that they aren’t, but I’m hoping that someone maybe has some form of insider knowledge :relaxed:

I don’t know a single person who goes out with a card reader so it can be annoying paying someone new out and about!

I wish they would update it, but they don’t even show payment references at the moment, let alone have cheque paying-in.

Worst of all, they don’t show the other person’s name for payments to and from other Nationwide accounts, you only get the sort code and account number. They show you the name for payments between Nationwide and other banks, so why can’t they do it for inter Nationwide transfers?

1 Like

Wow, and I thought my legacy banks were outdated! That really is awful!

I’ve heard (on this forum I think) that Nationwide’s backend systems are really antiquated and precarious (unlike for example HSBC who overhauled their backend globally in around 2007 I believe), which I guess would make updating functionality incredibly difficult for them, compared to other banks with more future proof systems.


That wouldn’t surprise me. You need the card reader to change the payee reference. And I think you can only do it once a day.

I have an ISA on there still (not worth the effort of transferring it) but the app/website is so bad I stopped using their current account.


Interestingly, they’re in the process of revamping their branch network which I imagine isn’t cheap. Why they don’t see value in investing in their digital infrastructure is beyond me. They’re going to get completely left behind if they fail to innovate at all, considering most of the high street banks are now on the heels of the fintech challengers.


They also don’t show pending transaction properly. For current accounts they just say “Visa transaction” (or something like that) for each one and don’t mention the merchant, and for credit cards pending transactions don’t show at all.

Despite this, they continually rank well for accounts switching to them. Their customer service is generally good though in my opinion, but it depends what you need them to do I suppose.


Internet banking aside I can’t really fault them. I wonder how much of this was their 5% interest promo that has now ended.

Especially as they have this:
All our branches have WiFi, and many have iPads for online banking
on the page you linked.

1 Like

Their tech is too far behind the times for me and I am looking to move away from them as my main account of 6 years. I’ve already diverted my salary away. Even if they told members what was in the pipeline may help but so far no hints on anything. Shame.


I’m really not sure whether I would say this based on my experience.

I haven’t contacted them much, but when I first opened my account all sorts of things were done wrong and I had to contact them via their Online Banking messaging service to get it sorted.

I then received fairly prompt replies which were polite and solved the problem, but I still chalked it up as a failing really since I should never have needed to contact them anyway. This same incompetence also seemed to be on display when they took nearly 6 months to actually complete the opening of my brother’s ISA. I just thought that was inexcusable and ridiculous.

One of the problems I had, for example, was ordering a chequebook with my new account and it arriving addressed as “Master” and not “Mr”. It just seemed absurd (and the account had “Mr” on it so someone had gone out of their way to change it from the default of my name). It also took a really long time to receive my debit card, despite the account being opened and online access set up.

So my experience with them is a mixed bag.

1 Like

I’ve seen other people on Twitter complain about debit cards taking a long time to arrive for new accounts. I’ve been a customer a while now so I can’t remember how long it took for my card to arrive when I first joined them. It seems that once you are a customer and can do things via the online banking things are generally smooth.

Yes, that is my experience really to be fair.

Once I got those initial problems sorted, I never needed to contact them again - everything has just worked OK since.

Really it just seems to be that they have poor onboarding procedures.

1 Like

My guess is that so many of their procedures have a large manual element to them (where most 21st century banks would have it done fully by an automated system) that 1) fairly basic things take a lot longer than they should and 2) when things do happen there are more mistakes (human error)

I remember reading on this forum about what a laborious behind the scenes process it was when someone unsubscribed from a Nationwide email newsletter - it went through multiple departments and required multiple stages of human action to do complete a simple task that a computer could do in under a second!


I strongly suspect this is true.

Taking my chequebook example, I bet that was somebody manually copying my customer details into an internal form in their back office, introducing the error. Any sensible system would have been automated!

1 Like

And I think this is good in current situation…
More work places…
Automation is good for consumers… but…

I’d rather they put the humans to use with things computers aren’t so good at - like customer service and phone support for the elderly who struggle with self service, etc.


In a way I think you’ve just described what Nationwide is all about. It isn’t necessarily a focus to be super efficient or like a bank. Their reason for investing in branches is because they know that many customers prefer the human touch.

So it seems to me they are doing a bit of both here. Once you get your accounts open and can do it all in online banking (within the restrictions we’ve talked about that it offers) things become more efficient and automated. However, the account opening process for a new customer is very person focused and people intensive. Sure they could modernise, but that isn’t the only thing they are trying to do.

I guess you just have to decide if this is the kind or organisation you want to do your banking with. They also offer an “ethical” dimension compared to the investments of banks.

It seems to be working for them at the moment, even though the likes of us here might expect more technology. How long it will continue to work for them will depend on future expectations of customers.

One thing I do know, I get a better return on my money with my dealings with Nationwide than I would holding similar products with a single bank. Their stated aim is to give better value for members.


Nationwide are not actually using old systems, just rubbish ones. Twelve years ago they announced they were chasing over to SAP systems, which explains everything. I used to work for a company which introduced a SAP billing system, and it was the biggest pile of dog poo you’ve ever seen. It was very complicated, extremely slow, and difficult to use, -in fact, the exact opposite of user friendly. It took a lot longer to do anything with it than it did with the old system that it replaced.

1 Like