Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

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Charles Joseph
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Charles Joseph »

Rocinante Rider wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 6:54 pm
Charles Joseph wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 6:42 pm Vanguard has on now three occasions given me excellent customer service since my recent return.

Vanguard is, in fact, owned by the funds which are owned by the shareholders. Shareholders do have voting rights and, unlike other brokerage firm structures, are focused primarily on the client rather than outside shareholders or family owners.

So far, so good. Glad to be home.
I never moved out. I've lived there very comfortably and with similarly excellent service for 40 years. I think I saw the Vanguard staff getting your old room ready for you to move back into. Welcome home. :sharebeer
Thank you friend. I feel like the Prodigal Son. :D
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Charles Joseph
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Charles Joseph »

Charles Joseph wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 6:42 pm Vanguard has on now three occasions given me excellent customer service since my recent return.

Vanguard is, in fact, owned by the funds which are owned by the shareholders. Shareholders do have voting rights and, unlike other brokerage firm structures, are focused primarily on the client rather than outside shareholders or family owners.

So far, so good. Glad to be home.
It came down to this: When the time comes, and my family needs to make a phone call, who do I want looking out for them? The Johnson Family? Chuck Schwab and the public shareholders to whom he is beholden? Or Vanguard?

The answer seemed obvious to me. So I'm back.
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Rocinante Rider
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Rocinante Rider »

Charles Joseph wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 7:16 pm
It came down to this: When the time comes, and my family needs to make a phone call, who do I want looking out for them? The Johnson Family? Chuck Schwab and the public shareholders to whom he is beholden? Or Vanguard?

The answer seemed obvious to me. So I'm back.
That is a HUGE consideration for me too. It's not my only reason for preferring Vanguard, but even if DW decides she wants/needs PAS after I'm gone, the fees are considerably lower and the managed investments considerably better at Vanguard.
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Charles Joseph
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Charles Joseph »

Rocinante Rider wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 7:23 pm
Charles Joseph wrote: Thu May 09, 2024 7:16 pm
It came down to this: When the time comes, and my family needs to make a phone call, who do I want looking out for them? The Johnson Family? Chuck Schwab and the public shareholders to whom he is beholden? Or Vanguard?

The answer seemed obvious to me. So I'm back.
That is a HUGE consideration for me too. It's not my only reason for preferring Vanguard, but even if DW decides she wants/needs PAS after I'm gone, the fees are considerably lower and the managed investments considerably better at Vanguard.
Agreed. Much better than getting pushed into a Fidelity SMA with a gross advisory fee of 1.5%. :shock:
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Kalikai
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Kalikai »

Vanguard Cash Plus customer rep.

It seems that there is a wait to get to the VCP rep for help, which I am used to for Vanguard. However, during the two different times that I called for help on some VCP issues, I seem to get the same disinterested, dour young rep. I guess he’s the specialist. Anyone noticed that?
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LadyGeek »

I removed a long interchange debating the intent of Fidelity to make a profit vs. Vanguard. The discussion was derailed.

Please stay on-topic, which is about Vanguard customer service.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by exodusing »

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Last edited by exodusing on Tue May 28, 2024 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
LeslieSmiley
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LeslieSmiley »

rkhusky wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:46 pm
bogswenbern wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:21 pm
hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 4:01 pm
jebmke wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2024 6:22 am
Gort wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2024 9:54 pm

OK, I’ll bite. I have no problems with Vanguard. I also have a Fidelity account. No problems there either. They are different but they both work for me.
I’ve had accounts with Fidelity, Schwab and now all VG over the years. All three have worked fine for me.
I've used all 3; all 3 were fine.
I'm mostly at Vanguard now. I rarely call. When I have called, I received good service.
Everything online works well. I can get the job done.
I got put on double-secret-probation for over buying. That was on me, and it won't happen again.
Do you have over $10mm?

The experience of the vast majority on this thread is not yours. Published authors like Charles Ellis and William Bernstein, this thread, and now Jdpower have concluded that service has gone down at Vanguard.
Current JD Power results may just be statistical fluctuations. Hard to tell when things are close. And that’s the message I take from the JD Power reports - Vanguard, Schwab, Fidelity are all about the same in terms of customer satisfaction for DIY investors. TD Ameritrade and T Rowe Price aren’t very far behind, but Wells Fargo, Merrill Edge and JP Morgan are a tier below.
Rob Burger didn't share with your take. Isn't Rob Burger one of the frequent speakers at the Bogleheads annual conference?

https://www.kiplinger.com/investing/van ... does-it-go

"The experience of one prominent Vanguard customer illustrates what the firm is up against. “I love Vanguard’s index funds. I am a ‘Boglehead.’ I am their biggest fan. But they are a victim of their own success,” says Rob Berger, a retired attorney and author of Retire Before Mom & Dad. Berger used to hold almost all his money at Vanguard.

Recently he moved about two-thirds of his savings to another brokerage because it offered more-responsive phone service and more-robust apps and web services. Though he holds some Vanguard funds in the new account, he has also invested in the new firm’s low-cost funds. “Vanguard has to get their act together,” he says. "
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LeslieSmiley »

rkhusky wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 9:53 pm
hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 6:54 pm
bogswenbern wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:21 pm
hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 4:01 pm
jebmke wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2024 6:22 am

I’ve had accounts with Fidelity, Schwab and now all VG over the years. All three have worked fine for me.
I've used all 3; all 3 were fine.
I'm mostly at Vanguard now. I rarely call. When I have called, I received good service.
Everything online works well. I can get the job done.
I got put on double-secret-probation for over buying. That was on me, and it won't happen again.
Do you have over $10mm?

The experience of the vast majority on this thread is not yours. Published authors like Charles Ellis and William Bernstein, this thread, and now Jdpower have concluded that service has gone down at Vanguard.
Thanks bogswenbernl!
$10M? no where close
You're probably right, but I'm not looking for special services.
I don't think that I need or want advice from Vanguard.
I can do what I need to do usually without support.
Vanguard allows me to have a lower expense ratio than any brokerage.
If I moved, would life be better?

I listen carefully to what W. Bernstein says. His advice is invaluable; I don't always follow his lead. I always buy his books!
+1
The vast majority of people are satisfied with Vanguard. That’s why they have more than 50 million customers and have the second largest AUM in the world.

False equivalency displayed here.

More than 50 million customers + second largest AUM do not equate to the quality of the firm automatically.

Just because some people are "satisfied" does not indicate an accurate assessment of the service and experience they experience because they could be "satisfied" due to the "POSSIBILITY" that:

- they have low standards
- they have high tolerance of unacceptable treatment
- they are in lack of knowledge of other better options
- emotional attachment to the company
- blind loyalty to the company
- etc etc

One of the prominent bogleheads Rob Burger who often speaks at the Bogleheads events certainly does not belong to these "majority of people" that you are referring to.

https://www.kiplinger.com/investing/van ... does-it-go

"The experience of one prominent Vanguard customer illustrates what the firm is up against. “I love Vanguard’s index funds. I am a ‘Boglehead.’ I am their biggest fan. But they are a victim of their own success,” says Rob Berger, a retired attorney and author of Retire Before Mom & Dad. Berger used to hold almost all his money at Vanguard.

Recently he moved about two-thirds of his savings to another brokerage because it offered more-responsive phone service and more-robust apps and web services. Though he holds some Vanguard funds in the new account, he has also invested in the new firm’s low-cost funds. “Vanguard has to get their act together,” he says. "
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by rkhusky »

LeslieSmiley wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 7:16 am
rkhusky wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:46 pm
bogswenbern wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:21 pm
hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 4:01 pm
jebmke wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2024 6:22 am

I’ve had accounts with Fidelity, Schwab and now all VG over the years. All three have worked fine for me.
I've used all 3; all 3 were fine.
I'm mostly at Vanguard now. I rarely call. When I have called, I received good service.
Everything online works well. I can get the job done.
I got put on double-secret-probation for over buying. That was on me, and it won't happen again.
Do you have over $10mm?

The experience of the vast majority on this thread is not yours. Published authors like Charles Ellis and William Bernstein, this thread, and now Jdpower have concluded that service has gone down at Vanguard.
Current JD Power results may just be statistical fluctuations. Hard to tell when things are close. And that’s the message I take from the JD Power reports - Vanguard, Schwab, Fidelity are all about the same in terms of customer satisfaction for DIY investors. TD Ameritrade and T Rowe Price aren’t very far behind, but Wells Fargo, Merrill Edge and JP Morgan are a tier below.
Rob Burger didn't share with your take. Isn't Rob Burger one of the frequent speakers at the Bogleheads annual conference?

https://www.kiplinger.com/investing/van ... does-it-go

"The experience of one prominent Vanguard customer illustrates what the firm is up against. “I love Vanguard’s index funds. I am a ‘Boglehead.’ I am their biggest fan. But they are a victim of their own success,” says Rob Berger, a retired attorney and author of Retire Before Mom & Dad. Berger used to hold almost all his money at Vanguard.

Recently he moved about two-thirds of his savings to another brokerage because it offered more-responsive phone service and more-robust apps and web services. Though he holds some Vanguard funds in the new account, he has also invested in the new firm’s low-cost funds. “Vanguard has to get their act together,” he says. "
Anecdotal stories aren’t equivalent to a survey. All brokerages have occasional issues and have disgruntled customers who move somewhere else. Doesn’t mean that most people are going to have problems.
Last edited by rkhusky on Tue May 28, 2024 7:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LeslieSmiley »

hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 6:54 pm
bogswenbern wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 5:21 pm
hudson wrote: Mon May 06, 2024 4:01 pm
jebmke wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2024 6:22 am
Gort wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2024 9:54 pm

OK, I’ll bite. I have no problems with Vanguard. I also have a Fidelity account. No problems there either. They are different but they both work for me.
I’ve had accounts with Fidelity, Schwab and now all VG over the years. All three have worked fine for me.
I've used all 3; all 3 were fine.
I'm mostly at Vanguard now. I rarely call. When I have called, I received good service.
Everything online works well. I can get the job done.
I got put on double-secret-probation for over buying. That was on me, and it won't happen again.
Do you have over $10mm?

The experience of the vast majority on this thread is not yours. Published authors like Charles Ellis and William Bernstein, this thread, and now Jdpower have concluded that service has gone down at Vanguard.
Thanks bogswenbernl!
$10M? no where close
You're probably right, but I'm not looking for special services.
I don't think that I need or want advice from Vanguard.
I can do what I need to do usually without support.
Vanguard allows me to have a lower expense ratio than any brokerage.
If I moved, would life be better?

I listen carefully to what W. Bernstein says. His advice is invaluable; I don't always follow his lead. I always buy his books!

Vanguard is not the only place for low expense ratio investing.

As a matter of fact, there are multiple index funds offered by fidelity that have lower expense ratio than vanguard index funds.

The world has evolved....

And yes for many people, life has gotten significantly better since they moved.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by jebmke »

I always dismiss myself. That's why I look for evidence. Often people post "When I click .... I get an error. Is anyone else seeing this?" I don't doubt them but if it is something that appears important or relevant or if I can check it easily I try to replicate it (short of doing a transaction).
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by WhitePuma »

To me, it’s not simply the sheer quantity of Vanguard customer service issues folks have raised in this thread and elsewhere online, as significant as that # is. But it’s also: (1) the highly detailed descriptions people have provided of a diverse range of totally unacceptable experiences and outcomes (those details paint a clear picture of a dysfunctional company), and (2) the change in the # of issues over time (in other words, if this was a long-standing non-statistically significant baseline, then the thread would not have just started and exploded in the past 3 years).
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by gavinsiu »

It's hard to evaluate customer service issue from Vanguard because I call them so infrequently. Since the 90's, I have only called them a handful of times. Most of my calls were about the Yubikey issue, which was unsatisfactory, but that was not a usual issue.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by jebmke »

WhitePuma wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 11:04 am To me, it’s not simply the sheer quantity of Vanguard customer service issues folks have raised in this thread and elsewhere online, as significant as that # is. But it’s also: (1) the highly detailed descriptions people have provided of a diverse range of totally unacceptable experiences and outcomes (those details paint a clear picture of a dysfunctional company), and (2) the change in the # of issues over time (in other words, if this was a long-standing non-statistically significant baseline, then the thread would not have just started and exploded in the past 3 years).
perhaps; I value the detailed explanations, especially if the post is light on hair fire. However, I think this thread could be an artifact of adverse selection. We have no way to know, however.

Here is what I consider a good post about an eTrade issue:
viewtopic.php?p=7887586#p7887586
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by rkhusky »

WhitePuma wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 11:04 am To me, it’s not simply the sheer quantity of Vanguard customer service issues folks have raised in this thread and elsewhere online, as significant as that # is. But it’s also: (1) the highly detailed descriptions people have provided of a diverse range of totally unacceptable experiences and outcomes (those details paint a clear picture of a dysfunctional company), and (2) the change in the # of issues over time (in other words, if this was a long-standing non-statistically significant baseline, then the thread would not have just started and exploded in the past 3 years).
Without an even statistical sampling, there’s no way to know how Vanguard compares to other companies. The best I’ve seen is the JD Power customer satisfaction surveys, which show Vanguard comparable or better than other brokerages. Perhaps there’s problems with the JD Power methodology, but it’s more reliable than anecdotal reports on a Vanguard-biased website.

And Vanguard is clearly not dysfunctional, otherwise they wouldn’t still be growing and have 50M customers.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LadyGeek »

I removed a contentious interchange. As a reminder, see: General Etiquette
At all times we must conduct ourselves in a respectful manner to other posters. Attacks on individuals, insults, name calling, trolling, baiting or other attempts to sow dissension are not acceptable.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LadyGeek »

Additional contentious posts have been removed.

Please stay on topic.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by NYCaviator »

WhitePuma wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 11:04 am To me, it’s not simply the sheer quantity of Vanguard customer service issues folks have raised in this thread and elsewhere online, as significant as that # is. But it’s also: (1) the highly detailed descriptions people have provided of a diverse range of totally unacceptable experiences and outcomes (those details paint a clear picture of a dysfunctional company), and (2) the change in the # of issues over time (in other words, if this was a long-standing non-statistically significant baseline, then the thread would not have just started and exploded in the past 3 years).
You make a good point, but I don't think VG is necessarily a dysfunctional company. Rather they seem to be going through an identity crisis as they shift their focus towards a pay-for-advice model.

My personal experience has been similar to what a lot of people posted on here. Occasionally I'd have excellent customer service and VG would answer the phone quickly. Other times I'd run into annoying bugs on their website or get a phone rep who didn't know what they were doing. I find it a major issue that they don't have 24/7 customer service (or even shortened hours on the weekend).

VG is a perfectly fine brokerage, but they aren't the only game in town anymore. When you look at the competition, there's really no reason to stay at VG unless you want to use their funds and dislike ETFs. I'll take Fidelity or Schwab any day. Free wires I can send online, actual banking services, 24/7 customer service, and a more usable website.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LadyGeek »

NYCaviator wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 9:36 pm When you look at the competition, there's really no reason to stay at VG unless you want to use their funds and dislike ETFs.
You can use Vanguard funds at other brokerages, but keep an eye out for transaction fees. Fidelity has a transaction fee for Vanguard mutual funds, for example, but not Vanguard ETFs.

I'm investing with Vanguard funds at Fidelity.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Fallible »

NYCaviator wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 9:36 pm
WhitePuma wrote: Tue May 28, 2024 11:04 am To me, it’s not simply the sheer quantity of Vanguard customer service issues folks have raised in this thread and elsewhere online, as significant as that # is. But it’s also: (1) the highly detailed descriptions people have provided of a diverse range of totally unacceptable experiences and outcomes (those details paint a clear picture of a dysfunctional company), and (2) the change in the # of issues over time (in other words, if this was a long-standing non-statistically significant baseline, then the thread would not have just started and exploded in the past 3 years).
You make a good point, but I don't think VG is necessarily a dysfunctional company. Rather they seem to be going through an identity crisis as they shift their focus towards a pay-for-advice model.
I also don't think VG is or was dysfunctional overall, but certainly was so in various areas where some incredible money mistakes were being made. And identify crisis would, to me, get back to lack of strong leadership at Vanguard and that would go right to the top with CEO Tim Buckley.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by dkturner »

My wife and I each have three accounts at Vanguard brokerage. She receives a single monthly statement with all three accounts combined. It’s nice because she can instantly see what her overall asset allocation looks like. I have been receiving two monthly statements. One statement combines my regular IRA and my taxable account. The other statement is for my Rollover IRA. About two months ago I sent a message to our account rep asking if all three of my accounts could be included on a single monthly statement. He said he would take care of it.

When the April statements arrived we each received a single statement. Mine included only my regular IRA and my taxable account. No statement (either paper or online) for the Rollover IRA. Sent another message to our account rep. He called, apologized and said he would contact the appropriate office that takes care of these sorts of things and get all three accounts included on a single statement.

I’m waiting to see what my May statement(s) include.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by dbr »

dkturner wrote: Fri May 31, 2024 12:53 pm My wife and I each have three accounts at Vanguard brokerage. She receives a single monthly statement with all three accounts combined. It’s nice because she can instantly see what her overall asset allocation looks like. I have been receiving two monthly statements. One statement combines my regular IRA and my taxable account. The other statement is for my Rollover IRA. About two months ago I sent a message to our account rep asking if all three of my accounts could be included on a single monthly statement. He said he would take care of it.

When the April statements arrived we each received a single statement. Mine included only my regular IRA and my taxable account. No statement (either paper or online) for the Rollover IRA. Sent another message to our account rep. He called, apologized and said he would contact the appropriate office that takes care of these sorts of things and get all three accounts included on a single statement. I’m waiting to see what my May statement(s) include.
Now, see, the one unforgivable thing here is for them to say they are doing a certain thing and then it doesn't get done. Apologies and promises don't meet the bill. I am not saying Vanguard is unique in this, but it is a fail pure and simple.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by dkturner »

dbr wrote: Fri May 31, 2024 12:57 pm
dkturner wrote: Fri May 31, 2024 12:53 pm My wife and I each have three accounts at Vanguard brokerage. She receives a single monthly statement with all three accounts combined. It’s nice because she can instantly see what her overall asset allocation looks like. I have been receiving two monthly statements. One statement combines my regular IRA and my taxable account. The other statement is for my Rollover IRA. About two months ago I sent a message to our account rep asking if all three of my accounts could be included on a single monthly statement. He said he would take care of it.

When the April statements arrived we each received a single statement. Mine included only my regular IRA and my taxable account. No statement (either paper or online) for the Rollover IRA. Sent another message to our account rep. He called, apologized and said he would contact the appropriate office that takes care of these sorts of things and get all three accounts included on a single statement. I’m waiting to see what my May statement(s) include.
Now, see, the one unforgivable thing here is for them to say they are doing a certain thing and then it doesn't get done. Apologies and promises don't meet the bill. I am not saying Vanguard is unique in this, but it is a fail pure and simple.
I don’t have a problem with our rep, he is very helpful and usually (but not this time) gets things done properly. Apparently account reps have limited powers and have to refer many types of requests to different units at Vanguard. This seems to be where things either don’t get done or get done incorrectly. I can understand why such a system is necessary but there needs to be some way of insuring that customer service reps, who probably handle hundreds of large accounts, can see what is going on with all of the requests they receive. They can’t be expected to remember everything.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Feldman »

I submitted a secure message to Vanguard on Monday for the first time in years. I received a response on Wednesday -- about 51 hours later. The issue I messaged about had been resolved by this time, although I highly doubt it was my message alone that gave this result. Nonetheless, I find this response satisfactory for non-urgent asynchronous communication.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by TSintheATL »

My most recent experience from a couple of weeks ago:

Called for the first time in several years to do a reallocation within my IRA, (probably could have done it online, but I'm not very computer-savvy) after answering a few questions was connected to a representative within a minute, two minutes max. He was able to perform what I wanted done and was easy to understand. Had to be put on hold for someone to authorize the action. Also had another question about something else, so was put on hold to talk to a third person. Total time of phone call was 22 minutes.

After hearing the horror stories, was fairly satisfied with the experience.
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Vanguard Customer Service

Post by subdude »

[Merged into the existing thread on same topic by Moderator Misenplace]

I'm very disappointed in VG customer service these days. Over $2M in AUM and I can't reach customer service when needed. Called today for the first time in ages, and I'm on hold now with the recording stating: "your estimated wait time is greater than 1 hour". I miss the days of flagship service and my dedicated advisor.

This, on top of the coerced switch from mutual funds to brokerage services, has convinced me to begin slowly transitioning to Schwab.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service

Post by jebmke »

Why slowly?
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Lastrun »

I have moved most of my accounts (10 in all) to Fidelity-not for customer service reasons.

Surprising to me, I have had to call VG several times during this process because of issues I created.

VG customer service has been prompt, efficient and professional. Indeed I would rank VG a smidge above Fidelity in this process.

I called them today on an issue where I could not reconcile the account transfer amount for a dividend on 5/30 that did not show as reinvested on the statement. I pressed 1 for them to call me back and they did in 5 minutes. This was at around 10:30am EST. The rep took a look saw my issue and walked me through it. 10 minute ordeal.

YMMV.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Parkinglotracer »

New article on vanguards customer service challenges.

I am still with vanguard.

https://apple.news/AEIv5YHFRQjiGbLWTLexQ6w
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by sport »

Parkinglotracer wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 1:29 pm New article on vanguards customer service challenges.

I am still with vanguard.

https://apple.news/AEIv5YHFRQjiGbLWTLexQ6w
It's behind a paywall.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service

Post by CRC_Volunteer »

jebmke wrote: Fri Jul 05, 2024 5:55 pmWhy slowly?
+100
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Clarky
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Clarky »

With just a little trepidation, but wanting to see just how functional and easy it was to do, I opened online a new rollover account with Vanguard for my workplace 401k (recently retired). Well, in less than ten minutes I was done, and it showed up instantly. Even walked me through beneficiary designations.

We’ll see how it goes from here.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by subdude »

So today I've been on hold to speak to a retirement CS for 1 hour 46 minutes for far. The recording still says that the wait time is "over an hour". This is ridiculous.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by subdude »

sport wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 2:33 pm
Parkinglotracer wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 1:29 pm New article on vanguards customer service challenges.

https://apple.news/AEIv5YHFRQjiGbLWTLexQ6w
It's behind a paywall.
A tip.
Type "archive.is/" (without the quotes) before the web address (archive.is/https......) and you can view most paywalled articles.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by ruralavalon »

subdude wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 5:54 pm
sport wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 2:33 pm
Parkinglotracer wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 1:29 pm New article on vanguards customer service challenges.

https://apple.news/AEIv5YHFRQjiGbLWTLexQ6w
It's behind a paywall.
A tip.
Type "archive.is/" (without the quotes) before the web address (archive.is/https......) and you can view most paywalled articles.
This is a Wall Street Journal article, here are some quotes.
WSJ wrote:“The complaints go back years and years,” said Daniel Sotiroff, a research analyst who covers Vanguard at Morningstar. “Part of the issue is their size and how fast they’ve grown. It’s hard to turn the Titanic.”
WSJ wrote:Managing ultracheap index funds is a low-margin business, however, and running a brokerage is costly. The challenge for Ramji is to continue Vanguard’s push into other revenue streams such as financial advice while repairing the firm’s relationship with brokerage customers.
WSJ wrote:Vanguard is far from the only brokerage with customer-service complaints, but its issues are notably widespread and long-running.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link: Bogleheads® investment philosophy
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Gort »

subdude wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 5:50 pm So today I've been on hold to speak to a retirement CS for 1 hour 46 minutes for far. The recording still says that the wait time is "over an hour". This is ridiculous.
So what were you trying to do? Could you have done it online?
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Farm boy »

Recent Vanguard customer service experience:
Long-time Vanguard customer, and am in the process of bailing out due to the forced brokerage transition and drop in customer service. (Don't want to argue anymore about the forced brokerage transition.) Got an email from them that they needed some additional information from me on the process of transferring funds out. Called the listed number (different than usual numbers). Of course had to wait for call back. The rep looked up my account and didn't understand what the issue was they needed info on. When I explained that it probably concened the transfers, she didn't seem to understand the basics of transferring IRA funds. And didn't seem to be listening to me, just reading computer notes. She then incorrectly said that she thought the notes indicated the issue had been corrected. I was skeptical. So in response she put me on hold for her to talk to a supervisor. Waited a long time on hold, first dead air, then music. Then I was just disconnected. No call back, even though they obviously have my number.

Called back next day and went through similar process, but after long hold again, finally got transferred to a knowlegable licensed FINRA rep. (In the good old days I would have been connected in five minutes if I had called the Vogager Select Services phone number.) Issue was an error by Vanguard's people not actually reading a new IRA custodian's standard transfer document carefully; all the info they needed was there. So apparently they just rejected a standard IRA transfer document because they didn't turn it over to read the back. Was told I would get a call back in a few days on what to do. (The rep specifically told me that he could not give me the written form resubmittal instructions by e-mail.) He said the new custodian may have to resubmit the form (why?), with an explanatory letter - I guess saying "read the back page of the form." And no, it can't be done online; witnessed signature required on paper for transfer.

Been with Vanguard since Bogle. I'm done. By the way, my alma matter, a very large state university system, recently dropped Vanguard for Fidelity for their employee retirement mutual funds. An employee told me they had numerous customer service complaints due to the unlicensed Vanguard reps who answer the phones (some definitely offshore) not knowing what they are doing, and then having to wait a long time on hold (or a call back) for FINRA licensed reps to actually do anything significant on accounts. For many employees these retirement funds are their life savings. And again, just like the rep told me, not everything can be done online, especially when there are problems. Decent phone customer service will always be important, and starting a few years ago Vanguard now has serious problems with that. Jack Bogle would have hated this.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Clarky »

Farm boy wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 5:31 pm Recent Vanguard customer service experience:
Long-time Vanguard customer, and am in the process of bailing out due to the forced brokerage transition and drop in customer service. (Don't want to argue anymore about the forced brokerage transition.) Got an email from them that they needed some additional information from me on the process of transferring funds out. Called the listed number (different than usual numbers). Of course had to wait for call back. The rep looked up my account and didn't understand what the issue was they needed info on. When I explained that it probably concened the transfers, she didn't seem to understand the basics of transferring IRA funds. And didn't seem to be listening to me, just reading computer notes. She then incorrectly said that she thought the notes indicated the issue had been corrected. I was skeptical. So in response she put me on hold for her to talk to a supervisor. Waited a long time on hold, first dead air, then music. Then I was just disconnected. No call back, even though they obviously have my number.

Called back next day and went through similar process, but after long hold again, finally got transferred to a knowlegable licensed FINRA rep. (In the good old days I would have been connected in five minutes if I had called the Vogager Select Services phone number.) Issue was an error by Vanguard's people not actually reading a new IRA custodian's standard transfer document carefully; all the info they needed was there. So apparently they just rejected a standard IRA transfer document because they didn't turn it over to read the back. Was told I would get a call back in a few days on what to do. (The rep specifically told me that he could not give me the written form resubmittal instructions by e-mail.) He said the new custodian may have to resubmit the form (why?), with an explanatory letter - I guess saying "read the back page of the form." And no, it can't be done online; witnessed signature required on paper for transfer.

Been with Vanguard since Bogle. I'm done. By the way, my alma matter, a very large state university system, recently dropped Vanguard for Fidelity for their employee retirement mutual funds. An employee told me they had numerous customer service complaints due to the unlicensed Vanguard reps who answer the phones (some definitely offshore) not knowing what they are doing, and then having to wait a long time on hold (or a call back) for FINRA licensed reps to actually do anything significant on accounts. For many employees these retirement funds are their life savings. And again, just like the rep told me, not everything can be done online, especially when there are problems. Decent phone customer service will always be important, and starting a few years ago Vanguard now has serious problems with that. Jack Bogle would have hated this.
Unless it was just to get this off your chest, has it occurred to you that the long screed above was a waste of time?
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by tj »

Clarky wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 6:59 pm
Farm boy wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 5:31 pm Recent Vanguard customer service experience:
Long-time Vanguard customer, and am in the process of bailing out due to the forced brokerage transition and drop in customer service. (Don't want to argue anymore about the forced brokerage transition.) Got an email from them that they needed some additional information from me on the process of transferring funds out. Called the listed number (different than usual numbers). Of course had to wait for call back. The rep looked up my account and didn't understand what the issue was they needed info on. When I explained that it probably concened the transfers, she didn't seem to understand the basics of transferring IRA funds. And didn't seem to be listening to me, just reading computer notes. She then incorrectly said that she thought the notes indicated the issue had been corrected. I was skeptical. So in response she put me on hold for her to talk to a supervisor. Waited a long time on hold, first dead air, then music. Then I was just disconnected. No call back, even though they obviously have my number.

Called back next day and went through similar process, but after long hold again, finally got transferred to a knowlegable licensed FINRA rep. (In the good old days I would have been connected in five minutes if I had called the Vogager Select Services phone number.) Issue was an error by Vanguard's people not actually reading a new IRA custodian's standard transfer document carefully; all the info they needed was there. So apparently they just rejected a standard IRA transfer document because they didn't turn it over to read the back. Was told I would get a call back in a few days on what to do. (The rep specifically told me that he could not give me the written form resubmittal instructions by e-mail.) He said the new custodian may have to resubmit the form (why?), with an explanatory letter - I guess saying "read the back page of the form." And no, it can't be done online; witnessed signature required on paper for transfer.

Been with Vanguard since Bogle. I'm done. By the way, my alma matter, a very large state university system, recently dropped Vanguard for Fidelity for their employee retirement mutual funds. An employee told me they had numerous customer service complaints due to the unlicensed Vanguard reps who answer the phones (some definitely offshore) not knowing what they are doing, and then having to wait a long time on hold (or a call back) for FINRA licensed reps to actually do anything significant on accounts. For many employees these retirement funds are their life savings. And again, just like the rep told me, not everything can be done online, especially when there are problems. Decent phone customer service will always be important, and starting a few years ago Vanguard now has serious problems with that. Jack Bogle would have hated this.
Unless it was just to get this off your chest, has it occurred to you that the long screed above was a waste of time?
Speak for yourself. I found it quite interesting to read.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by jebmke »

Clarky wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 6:59 pm long screed above was a waste of time?
so are short screeds. Just a smaller waste
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Feldman »

Good luck to you Farm boy. I hope you find the grass greener.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Farm boy »

Clarky wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 6:59 pm Unless it was just to get this off your chest, has it occurred to you that the long screed above was a waste of time?
My time to waste. And has it occurred to you that the title of this thread is "Vanguard Customer Sevice Mega-thread"? That is, its for people to post and comment on recent Vanguard customer service experiences. That way, people can decide if they wish to newly invest (or stay) with Vanguard, or go elsewhere. I was perfectly happy for many years, but things have obviously changed. Hence this "Mega-thread" and several online articles on the same topic.

You can waste some more time reading below about the great man and his vision for Vanguard, which obviously has changed. After Jack stepped down as chairman in 2000, he didn't retire, but stayed on at the Vanguard campus for many years at the Bogle Financial Markets Research Center, basically lecturing around the country and doing lots of print and TV interviews as Vanguard's "cheerleader," promoting the Vanguard investing philophy, his investing books, Vanguard's personal customer service model, and importantly Vanguard's unique customer ownership structure. Though Jack had some disagreements with the subsequent officers on other matters, until recent years Vanguard was still promoting the original Vanguard direct customer fund ownership model and quality personal customer service on the website.

I had the honor of meeting Jack and talking to him once after a lecture, where he said his greatest concern was for the "little guy" investor. I think he would have been appalled at the obvious drop in customer service - in particular the more recent "phone screeners" (US & offshore), who don't seem to have taken a decent class in mutual fund investing, much less a FINRA prep class.

Here, waste some more time:

Vanguard Announces The Passing Of Founder John C. Bogle
https://corporate.vanguard.com/content/ ... 11619.html
John Bogle, who founded Vanguard and revolutionized retirement savings, dies at 89
https://www.inquirer.com/business/john- ... 90116.html
John C. Bogle, Founder of Financial Giant Vanguard, Is Dead at 89
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/16/obit ... -dead.html
Vanguard founder Jack Bogle dies at 89; pioneered the index fund
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/ob ... story.html
Clarky
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by Clarky »

Farm boy wrote: Sun Jul 14, 2024 1:50 am
Clarky wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2024 6:59 pm Unless it was just to get this off your chest, has it occurred to you that the long screed above was a waste of time?
My time to waste. And has it occurred to you that the title of this thread is "Vanguard Customer Sevice Mega-thread"? That is, its for people to post and comment on recent Vanguard customer service experiences. That way, people can decide if they wish to newly invest (or stay) with Vanguard, or go elsewhere. I was perfectly happy for many years, but things have obviously changed. Hence this "Mega-thread" and several online articles on the same topic.

You can waste some more time reading below about the great man and his vision for Vanguard, which obviously has changed. After Jack stepped down as chairman in 2000, he didn't retire, but stayed on at the Vanguard campus for many years at the Bogle Financial Markets Research Center, basically lecturing around the country and doing lots of print and TV interviews as Vanguard's "cheerleader," promoting the Vanguard investing philophy, his investing books, Vanguard's personal customer service model, and importantly Vanguard's unique customer ownership structure. Though Jack had some disagreements with the subsequent officers on other matters, until recent years Vanguard was still promoting the original Vanguard direct customer fund ownership model and quality personal customer service on the website.

I had the honor of meeting Jack and talking to him once after a lecture, where he said his greatest concern was for the "little guy" investor. I think he would have been appalled at the obvious drop in customer service - in particular the more recent "phone screeners" (US & offshore), who don't seem to have taken a decent class in mutual fund investing, much less a FINRA prep class.

Here, waste some more time:

Vanguard Announces The Passing Of Founder John C. Bogle
https://corporate.vanguard.com/content/ ... 11619.html
John Bogle, who founded Vanguard and revolutionized retirement savings, dies at 89
https://www.inquirer.com/business/john- ... 90116.html
John C. Bogle, Founder of Financial Giant Vanguard, Is Dead at 89
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/16/obit ... -dead.html
Vanguard founder Jack Bogle dies at 89; pioneered the index fund
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/ob ... story.html
No thank you. But I hope your issues are resolved to your satisfaction.
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Re: Vanguard Customer Service Mega-thread

Post by LadyGeek »

The discussion is getting contentious. Please stay on-topic.
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