Have you ever worked in an organisation where a customer survey was the answer for everything? We have... and it sucked!
Survey fatigue is REAL and it is therefore integral to ensure that your organisation strategically approaches the way that you survey your customers. This requires governance which can be applied utilising a Customer Experience Measurement (CXM) Framework.
This 3-tier framework will provide guidelines for your organisation to adopt however it inevitably will need to be moulded to properly suit the specific needs of your customers.
TIER ONE - Strategic Measurement
The top tier of your measurement framework should focus on understanding the brand advocacy of your customers. You really want to try and understand how your customers feel about your organisation as a WHOLE. This measure will be treated as your "top-line" measure for the organisation, and will allow all staff to work towards a common goal.
The Strategic Measurement Tier is designed to assess your overall relationship with your customers and to subsequently identify customer pain points at the highest level. The feedback you receive from this survey should inform strategic decisions and is a metric that your Executive team will be most interested about (and potentially remunerated on).
The frequency of this survey should be consistent, but not too regular. You should also try to survey as many customers as possible to ensure that the survey results are REPRESENTATIVE of your customer base.
It's not uncommon for this strategic measurement to be included in a brand health tracker but can also be sent as an independent survey. The only guidance that we will give is that the survey shouldn't be too long. Where possible, use customer metadata to answer demographic questions about your customers and only ask questions that are extremely necessary (see recommended approach below).
Frequency: Every 3-6 months, at regular intervals
Strategic measure: NPS or CSAT
Additional q'ns: Aim to measure initiatives that your business has recently implemented
Who: As many of your customers as possible
Metadata: Customer tenure, customer segments, previous survey results, demographic information
TIER TWO - Episodic Measurement
The second tier of your measurement framework should focus on measuring the experience of your customers at different journey points throughout their customer lifecycle. This is often known as measuring "moments that matter".
An effective episodic measurement program often utilises different channels to measure customer experience - website, SMS, email, IVR, QR codes etc. If implemented effectively, your organisation will be able to quantitatively map the experience of your customers across their entire lifecycle;
Example of a customer lifecycle:
Web Search --> Get Offer --> Purchase Item --> Get item delivered --> Return item --> Refund
Once you have been able to map the experience of your customers across the entire lifecycle, opportunities or "low hanging fruit" will become evident. These opportunities can then be allocated to certain teams who are empowered to resolve these issues, inevitably fostering a culture of continuous improvement across the organisation!
Frequency: Real-time. Try to apply resting periods of 1-2 months to individual customers
Strategic measure: CSAT, Customer Effort Score (CES)
Additional q'ns: Understand specific elements of that journey point
Who: Customers who have recently been involved in that particular "moment"
Metadata: Previous survey results, customer spend, customer tenure, demographics (age, location)
TIER THREE - Transactional Measurement
The final tier of your measurement framework is should focus on identifying and measuring the "transactions" or "interactions" within your organisation.
It's extremely important to recognise that this tier should not solely rely on traditional surveys to understand the customer experience. This tier is more about interconnecting different pieces of data to tell the full story;
Experiential Data [X] (i.e. customer surveys) - this data is generally quite subjective and can often lack context.
Operational Data [O] (i.e. website performance, call centre wait times) - this data is objective, and can provide further context behind WHY the customer is disappointed in certain situations.
"Combining (X) + (O) DATA = TRUE CUSTOMER INSIGHT"
If implemented correctly, this tier will effectively support your episodic measurement tier, as it will be able to provide further context (the how) behind a specific "moment" within the customer journey.
Your organisation notices that the effort score for the "customer returns" journey point has severely declined over the last 2 weeks. Your team reads through the customer feedback and there is a consistent theme relating to customer delays in getting their refund.
Whilst you now have an indication of why the experience has declined, it is extremely hard to identify the root cause of this issue if you have no visibility of any other data points / transactions which occur within that journey point. Is the payment system broken? Is the call centre too busy? Or is our delivery network broken?
In this instance, contact centre metrics showed that call waiting times exceeded 4 minutes on average over the 2 week period that the score tanked, demonstrating that customers were moreso annoyed about the long waiting times to speak to someone to process the refund. If the organisation did not have access to this operational data, it is highly likely that the investigation could have gone down a rabbit hole having discussions with payment merchants about their refund processing times.
Examples of really useful transactional metrics include;
- Call Centre Statistics - Volumes, Call Reasons, Channel Utilisation (Email, Phone, Chat)
- Website - Customer Visits, Top Pages, Key Search Terms, 404 Not Found Messages
- Feedback - # of Complaints, Types of Complaints, Length of time to resolve
To tie things up, measuring the customer experience strategically and across multiple touch points will ensure you always have your finger on the pulse of your organisation. This will only be useful if the feedback is used to drive improvement in your organisation. Actionability is KEY!
The Bearded Man