Not long after the forceful removal of a passenger from its aircraft earlier this year, United Airlines announced its plans to link employees’ incentives with customer satisfaction levels. While a rather extreme example of how a bad incident can lead to improvements in service, this metric should be considered when determining the levels of staff reward. And United Airlines are not alone in their move toward customer focused KPIs. Late last year, financial services provider, Westpac removed all product-related incentives for bank’s tellers and chose to implement an incentive scheme using customer feedback based on the quality of service received. As of last month the ANZ Banking Group also overhauled its rewards scheme for employees opting for an incentive plan which focused on satisfaction instead of sales volumes. (source). In fact, a recent report reviewing the Australian retail banking remuneration system urges more banks to adopt the same approach – moving away from sales-based incentives to customer-focused metrics which can help avoid scandals and fraud.
But are we measuring the customer-focused metrics right?
While some of the biggest banks have been trying to move from a sales to service culture, some staff members, feel sceptical about the change. Those interviewed in the issue report reflected that measurements on their performance were still largely dependant upon the sales figures and monetary value suggesting that while it’s no longer called “sales” but “helping customers” it still reflected conversions. One of the key issues is that when measuring customer-center metrics, many banks simply don’t have the data, so end up repurposing financial objectives. For instance in order to measure if staff were able to identify customers’ needs, they were measured by the number of products cross or upsold. As one staff member pointed out concierge metrics were not based on conversations but on branch sales.’ So for banks and their staff members to be able to truly embrace the change, more effort and devotions are needed in each organisation to develop a set of metrics that truly reflect the customer experience.
Measuring customer experience on the entire journey
An article from the Harvard Business Review named The Truth About Customer Experience highlighted the importance of companies measuring customers’ experience during their end to end journey, rather than only focusing on certain touch points. This is especially applicable to the service industry. Looking at banks as an example, one customer might feel very different six months after opening an account compared to the moment when they completed the application.By surveying the customer periodically allows them time to really experience and understand the product or service, hence to form a more comprehensive view towards that. A more systematic and long term measuring scheme is therefore needed in order to establish a holistic view of how customers feel towards the brand and their service.
The tool to collect data
Collecting customer feedback is crucial for any organisation who wish to adopt customer satisfaction as the metrics to measure staff performance. SMS Survey is, among all, one of the most effective tools enjoying a 98% open rate meaning a higher rate of response. In fact, Ipsos MORI found that 95.3% respondent said they would respond to an SMS survey. It allow customers to respond at a time that suits them. Customers can simply reply using a rating out of 10, or a Yes / No response, particularly efficient when using the Net Promoter Score. The data can then be fed back into a chosen CRM system, where required and highlight particular staff members for praise and give further insight into key area that needs improvement. As a business owner, what are your experiences of measuring customer satisfaction? We’d love to hear from you. Please share with us your thoughts with the comment section below.