Tech Vendors: Good CX Correlates to Referenceable B2B Clients

In our Q3 2017 tech vendor study, we asked 800 IT decision makers in large North American companies if they would be willing to be references for the vendors that they use. As you can see in the chart below, Apple leads the pack with 48% of its clients saying that they’d act as a reference. At the other end of the spectrum, only 11% of Alcatel-Lucent clients would be willing to be a reference.

We also looked at the connection between referenceability and the Temkin Experience Ratings (TxR) for Tech Vendors. Take a look at the second chart, where you can see that:

  • There’s a high correlation (R=0.65) between customer experience (TxR) and referenceability.
  • Two vendors are outliers in terms of having a higher level of referenceability than their TxR would suggest: Capgemini (+19 %-points) and Apple (+16 %-points).
  • Two vendors are outliers in terms of having a lower level of referenceability than their TxR would suggest: Hitachi (-14 %-points) and Alcatel-Lucent (-13 %-points).

Level of client referenceability for tech vendorsLevel of client references versus customer experience for tech vendors

Methodology notes:

  • We only included tech vendors that had at least 40 client responses.
  • After having IT decision makers select the tech vendors they use, we asked them this question: For which of the following vendors would you be willing to act as a reference, and speak with their prospective clients?

Written by 

I am an experience management transformist, helping organizations improve business results by engaging the hearts and minds of their customers, employees, and partners. My "job" is Head of the Qualtrics XM Institute. The Institute is still being established, but our goal is to help organizations around the world thrive by mastering Experience Management (XM). As part of this focus, I examine strategy, culture, interaction design, customer service, branding and leadership practices. And, as many people know, I love to speak about these topics in almost any forum. Prior to joining Qualtrics, I was managing partner of Temkin Group (leading CX research, advisory, and training firm), co-founder and chair of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (, and a VP at Forrester Research. I'm a fanatical student of business, so this blog provides an outlet for sharing insights from my ongoing educational journey. Check out my LinkedIn profile:

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