The Future of VoC Actionable Insights: Assistance Engines

Earlier this week I gave a speech called “The Future of CX: Humanistic, Prescriptive, and Responsive.” During that session, I discussed a missing link in today’s VoC technology: Assistance Engines. Here’s a picture of the future that I have in mind.

Architecture For Prescriptive Customer Insights

Before I describe Assistance Engines, I want to go back to 2010 when I labelled VoC technologies as Customer Insight & Action (CIA) Platforms. The naming was important, because it correctly identified that vendors needed to focus more on “insight & action” than on customer feedback.

It turns out that this is still the case. In the future, VoC vendors will be completely judged by results that their clients get from taking actions on the insights that these vendors provide.

Action is the holy grail! All of the efforts around surveying, integrating data, analyzing, etc. are only as valuable as the actions that they lead to. Most of the vendors now understand this key concept, and are working feverishly to improve the actionability of the insights they provide.

Companies still have a long way to go in taking action on their VoC insights. As you can see in our recent infographic, only 24% of large companies think they are good at taking action.

To help refine the insights, most vendors are developing some sort of an Intelligence Engine. This technology combines direct customer feedback with other customer information, and then applies different analytical and machine learning approaches to create predictive insights about large groups of customers.

While this technology is helping companies to better understand their customers, the output does not often translate directly into actionable insights. Why not? Because there’s a wide gap between insights from the Intelligence Engine which are often delivered in charts and dashboards, and the types of information that employees need to make their a day-to-day decisions.

No matter how much smarter these platforms get about customers, they won’t be truly actionable until they also get smarter about employees.

That’s where Assistance Engines come into play. What is an Assistance Engine?

A set of technologies that uses analytics and machine learning to provide increasingly valuable advice to help different employees across an organization make customer-centric decisions.

Or you can think of it more simply as…

Technology that recommends employee actions based on customer insights.

Assistance Engines will provide timely, actionable insights that are embedded within role-based processes, and delivered as answers and recommendations, not as charts and numbers. This technology will also fine-tune its recommendations based on feedback from employees about the types of recommendations that they find valuable.

Think of the Assistance Engine as being like an analyst who works for the employee. A good analyst can comb through data in an Intelligence Engine, understanding her bosses needs, and translate the customer insights into a very relevant set of recommendations. Over time, the analyst gets better at anticipating what her boss needs or wants to see.

Here are some examples of insights that an Assistance Engine might deliver (think about the employee simply asking Alexa a question):

  • When a product manager is defining a new product, the Assistance Engine will recommend a set of features that a product manager should include in its next release.
  • When a contact center supervisor finds that she has 15 minutes free, the Assistance Engine can tell her which agent to spend time with and what to cover during the session.
  • When an executive is looking to improve the companies NPS, the Assistance Engine will identify the regions to focus on and the activities that should be improved in those regions.

The early use cases for Assistance Engines will likely focus on recommendations that are already being made by analysts. But instead of having someone spend a lot of time manually digging through troves of data, the Assistance Engine will simply answer end users’ questions.

Companies still have a long way to go in building out their Intelligence Engines, so we do not expect to see Assistance Engines become mainstream for several years. But the maturing of end-user responsive analytics such as IBM Watson and Amazon Analytics will help accelerate the development.

The bottom line: Actionability requires more focus on employees.

 

Building A Strong Voice of The Customer Program (Infographic)

Voice of the Customer (VoC) programs are a critical component for many CX efforts. This infographic examines those efforts. Make sure to visit our VoC/NPS Resource Page for more help in building your VoC program.

Here are links to download different versions of the infographic:

Here are links to the research referenced in the infographic:

Report: Propelling Experience Design Across An Organization

Propelling Experience Design Across An OrganizationWe just published a Temkin Group report, Propelling Experience Design Across An Organization.

Although customer experience (CX) management has become a relatively common activity within large organizations, companies still struggle to deliver consistently positive experiences to their customers. One major issue impeding companies’ current CX efforts is that few organizations design customer interactions in a purposeful and deliberate manner. This report explores how companies can use Experience Design – which we define as a repeatable, human-centric approach for creating emotionally resonant interactions – to craft consistently excellent interactions and how they can share and spread these capabilities across the entire organization.

Download report for $195
buy the state of customer experience management report

Here are some highlights from this report:

  • The Experience Design process is made up of three generic phases (Clarification, Generation, Realization), each of which contains two stages (empathize and synthesize, conceptualize and materialize, scrutinize and actualize).
  • To help propel Experience Design capabilities across the organization, we developed The Federated Experience Design Model, which is made up of three tiers of employees – Experts, Boosters, and Dabblers.
  • We share over 30 examples of best practices from companies that are spreading and sharing Experience Design capabilities throughout their entire organization.
  • We also provide some tools that employees can use across the six stages of the Experience Design process.

The move towards propelling CX across an organization is part of a broader trend that we describe in the report, The Federated Customer Experience Model.

Here are two of the 22 figures in the report:

Process, Mindsets, and Skills of Experience DesignFederated Experience Design Model

Download report for $195
download the state of customer experience management


Report Outline:

  • Customers Suffer from Haphazard Experiences
  • Components of an Experience Design Methodology
    • Phase 1) Clarification: Understand the Objectives
    • Phase 2) Generation: Explore Potential Solutions
    • Phase 3) Realization: Share Solutions with Customers
  • Federating Experience Design Across an Organization
    • The role of Experts, Boosters, and Dabblers
  • Simple Experience Design Tools Support Federation

Figures in the Report:

  1. Process, Mindsets, and Skills of Experience Design
  2. Experience Design Mindsets
  3. Experience Design Skills
  4. Examples Across the Experience Design Processes
  5. Examples Across the Experience Design Processes
  6. Examples of Empathizing
  7. Three Levels of a Federated Experience Design Model
  8. Federated Experience Design Model
  9. Means of Providing Ongoing Coaching and Support
  10. IBM Design Thinking Badge Program
  11. Tools Across the Three Levels of Employees
  12. Tools for Clarification: Empathize
  13. Tools for Clarification: Synthesize
  14. Tools for Generation: Conceptualize
  15. Tools for Generation: Materialize
  16. Tools for Realization: Scrutinize and Actualize
  17. Customer Journey Maps
  18. Customer Journey Thinking™
  19. Temkin Group’s SLICE-B Experience Review Methodology
  20. Temkin Group’s SLICE-B Experience Review Assessment
  21. Empathy Maps
  22. Starbursting

Download report for $195
download the state of customer experience management

Report: 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings (U.S.)

2018 Temkin Experience Ratings: Customer Experience (CX) Benchmark of 318 U.S. Companies2018 marks the eighth straight year that we’ve published the Temkin Experience Ratings, a cross-industry, open standard benchmark of customer experience.

To generate these Ratings, we asked 10,000 U.S. consumers to rate their recent interactions with 318 companies across 20 industries and then evaluated their experiences across three dimensions: success, effort, and emotion. Here are some highlights:

  • Wegmans, H-E-B, Citizens, credit unions, Publix, and Subway earned the highest overall ratings, while CarMax, Spirit Airlines, Optimum, Medicaid, and Comcast received the lowest.
  • When we compared individual company’s ratings with their industry averages, we found that Southwest Airlines and Georgia Power most outperformed their peers, while CarMax and Spirit Airlines fell farthest behind their competitors.
  • The Ratings declined slightly this year, driven mostly by a drop in the emotion component scores.
  • To improve customer experience, companies need to master four competencies: Purposeful Leadership, Compelling Brand Values, Employee Engagement, and Customer Connectedness

Download report for FreeDownload free report: 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings (Customer Experience Benchmark) You can also download the dataset in Excel for $395

We have also published industry snapshots for all 20 industries.

Have questions? See our FAQs about the Temkin Experience Ratings and watch this previously recorded webinar.

Here are the top and bottom companies in the ratings:

2018 Temkin Experience Ratings: Customer Experience (CX) Leaders & Laggards

***See how your company can reference these results or
display a badge for top 10% and industry leaders***

Here’s how the industries compare with each other:

2018 Temkin Experience Ratings: Customer Experience (CX) Benchmark Data for 20 Industries

Download report for FREE
FreeDownloadButton
You can also download the dataset in Excel for $395


Report Outline:

  • Wegmans Earns Top Customer Experience Ratings
    • Supermarkets Dominate Top and TV/Internet Service Providers Occupy the Bottom
    • Success,Effort, and EmotionExperience Ratings
  • Slight Decline in the Temkin Experience Ratings
  • Calculating the Temkin Experience Ratings
  • The Path to Customer Experience Excellence

 

Figures in the Report:

  1. The Temkin Experience Ratingsis Based on the Three Components of an Experience
  2. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR) Evaluates 318 Companies Across 20 Industries
  3. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR), Top 50 Organizations
  4. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR), Bottom 50 Organizations
  5. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR), Range of Industry Scores
  6. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR), Industry Leaders and Laggards
  7. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings, Most Above and Below Industry Average
  8. Industry Component Average Scores for 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings
  9. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings, Leaders and Laggards in SuccessComponent
  10. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings, Leaders and Laggards in EffortComponent
  11. 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings, Leaders and Laggards in EmotionComponent
  12. Temkin Experience Ratings(TxR), Distribution of Scores
  13. Temkin Experience Ratings, Industry Averages From 2017 to 2018
  14. Temkin Experience Ratings, Largest Improvers and Decliners Between 2017 and 2018
  15. Calculating the Temkin Experience Ratings
  16. Customer Experience Competencies and Maturity

Download report for FREE
FreeDownloadButton
You can also download the dataset in Excel for $395


Get the Data

Purchase the 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings datasetDo you want to see all of the data from the 2018 Temkin Experience Ratings? You can purchase an excel spreadsheet for $395. Here’s a sample of the spreadsheet (.xls).

To view all of our ratings (experience, trust, forgiveness, customer service, and web experience), visit the Temkin Ratings website

Temkin Ratings website

The Future of VoC: Insight & Action, Not Feedback

The vendor market for Voice of the Customer (VoC) products and services has been heating up, with numerous acquisitions and mergers. All of this is happening as companies are trying to figure out how to run successful VoC programs. It appears that we on the verge of the next stage in evolution for VoC. So I decided to step back and look at the overall market.

VoC Programs Need To Grow Up

Our research shows that nearly three-quarters of large companies rate their voice of the customer (VoC) programs as being successful (only 8% say that they’ve been unsuccessful). That’s great—infusing almost any type of customer insights into a business can add value. 

Level of Maturity for Voice of the Customer (VoC) Programs in Large Enterprises

However, companies aren’t close to reaching their full potential. Only 14% of companies have reached the the two highest levels of Temkin Group’s VoC Maturity Model.

One of the reasons for this immaturity is a simple fact: creating and managing great VoC programs isn’t easy. They take significant leadership commitment and a  variety of expertise. In many cases, however, companies don’t redesign their approach to customer insights, they simply end up updating and automating many of their historical practices.

The big change for VoC programs is that they must focus more on enabling action across their organization. We found that only 24% of large firms think they are good at making changes to the business based on the insights. For VoC programs to fully mature, they need to become hyper-focused on generating insights in the right form at the right time to help people across their organizations make better, more informed decisions.

As if that’s not enough to work on, companies will need to address Six Customer Insight Trends that will reshape VoC programs: 1) Deep Empathy, Not Stacks of Metrics; 2) Continuous Insights, Not Periodic Studies; 3) Customer Journeys, Not Isolated Interactions; 4) Useful Prescriptions, Not Past Descriptions; 5) Enterprise Intelligence, Not Customer Feedback; and 6) Mobile First, Not Mobile Responsive.

VoC Vendors Need To Grow Up

In 2010, I rejected the label “Enterprise Feedback Management (EFM)” that was being used to describe vendors that provided technology and services for VoC programs. Instead of EFM, I labeled them as Customer Insight and Action (CIA) Platforms and here’s why:

To some degree, surveying functionality is becoming a commodity. Organizations are recognizing that feedback is not valuable on its own; it only becomes valuable when it’s used as an input to insights which drive some type of action. So the focus is no longer on feedback, but on insight and action. Hence, Customer Insight and Action (CIA) Platforms.

Fast forward to 2018 and I think that CIA Platforms is still the correct name for these offerings (from vendors such as Confimit, InMoment, MaritzCX, Medallia, and Qualtrics). They continue to evolve towards this description I used in 2010:

CIA Platforms need to support closed-loop voice of the customer (VoC) programs that are going beyond structured, solicited feedback (traditional surveys). With the maturing of text analytics and the rise of social media, companies are increasingly mining insights from unstructured, unsolicited feedback like customer comments on surveys, notes and verbatims from contact center conversations, inbound emails, online chats, social media sites, customer feedback comments, etc

But new channels of feedback (also called “listening posts”) are not the only element that distinguishes CIA Platforms from their predecessors. These applications also provide actionable insights by:

  • Incorporating non-feedback data like customer profiles and transactional history
  • Distributing tailored, contextual insights across an organization
  • Providing alerts based on specific criteria
  • Supporting workflow associated with taking action based on the insights
  • Integrating with other applications like CRM and workforce management

Next Generation CIA Platforms

Okay, so we got that right eight years ago. What’s next? Here’s where I think the market is heading for enterprise CIA Platforms:

  • Advanced analytics. We’ll see a considerable increase in the use of predictive analytics and the use of speech analytics to unlock insights from invaluable contact center conversations.
  • and way smarter analytics. The current set of analytics are mostly designed for analysts to uncover insights, but we’ll see more “packaged” analytics that mask complexity to provide tailored recommendations that improve high-impact decisions across the enterprise.
  • More focus on casual users.The days of generic metrics and dashboards will hopefully be a thing of the past. The information provided to people will be specific to their roles, and will proactively highlight the information that they need to know. It may take the form of highly customized dashboards, but it could also be a monthly infographic that can be posted in the lunchroom for hourly workers.
  • Less surveys, but more data. We already see in our research that organizations are becoming less reliant on surveys. This feedback will become less about understanding what’s being said by individual customers, and more about using the insights in predictive models to extrapolate what it might mean across entire segments of customers. This will require companies to integrate feedback with lots of customer data from other systems.
  • More selective, targeted feedback. Companies will get better at strategic sampling. What is this? Being smarter about who they get feedback from and when they get that feedback. The current approach of trying to hear from as many customers a possible in as many places as possible is conceptually attractive, but it’s an inefficient use of internal resources, and it puts a strain on an even more important commodity—customers’ time and attention.
  • Easier to use, but less “self-service.” In many cases, large enterprises lack the internal skills and know how to create and sustain a strong VoC program. While the technology platforms will continue to become easier for companies to administer and use without vendor support, strong VoC programs will increasingly recognize the need to tap into externally provided support across a number of areas, including:
    • Program setup
    • Data management
    • Sampling strategies
    • Dashboard design
    • Analytics
    • Insight distribution
    • Operational redesign

The bottom line: VoC programs and vendors need a makeover.

Report: Lessons in CX Excellence, 2018

Download Temkin Group research report, Lessons in Customer Experience Excellence, 2018We just published a Temkin Group report, Lessons in CX Excellence, 2018. The report provides insights from six winners in the Temkin Group’s 2017 CX Excellence Awards. The report, which has more than 70 pages of content, includes an appendix with the finalists’ nomination forms. This report has rich insights about both B2B and B2C customer experience.

Here’s the executive summary:

This past November, we named six organizations the winners of Temkin Group’s 2017 Customer Experience Excellence Award – AARP, Allianz Worldwide Partners, Century Support Services, Nurse Next Door Home Care Services, Reliant, and Sage. This report:

  • Highlights specific examples of how these companies’ customer experience (CX) efforts have created value for both their customers and for their businesses.
  • Describes winners’ best practices across the four customer experience competencies: purposeful leadership, compelling brand values, employee engagement, and customer connectedness.
  • Includes all of the winners’ detailed nomination forms to help you collect examples and ideas to apply to your own CX efforts.

Download report for $195
Purchase and download Temkin Group research report, Lessons in Customer Experience Excellence, 2018

Here are some highlights from the winners: Read More …

Report: State of Voice of the Customer Programs, 2017

State of Voice of the Customer Programs, 2017We just published a Temkin Group report, State of Voice of the Customer Programs, 2017. Here’s the executive summary:

For the seventh straight year, Temkin Group has benchmarked the competency and maturity levels of voice of the customer (VoC) programs within large organizations. This year we surveyed close to 200 large companies and asked them to complete Temkin Group’s VoC Competency and Maturity Assessment, which evaluates their capabilities across what we call the “Six Ds:” Detect, Disseminate, Diagnose, Discuss, Design, and Deploy. This report also includes data from these companies’ responses to help you benchmark your own company’s VoC efforts. We compared this year’s results with those from previous years and found that:

  • While most companies think that their VoC efforts are successful, less than one-quarter of companies consider themselves good at making changes to the business based on the insights.
  • Companies find their VoC programs to be most valuable for “identifying and fixing quick-hit operational issues” and least valuable for “identifying innovative product and service ideas.”
  • Companies expect technology will continue to heavily impact their VoC programs in the future, especially for integrating survey data with CRM and operational data.
  • In the future, companies expect the most important source of insights to be customer interaction history and the least important source to be multiple-choice questions.
  • The most common activity for VoC teams is defining customer experience metrics for their companies, and this activity became even more popular over the past year.
  • Only 14% of companies have reached the two highest levels of VoC maturity (out of six levels), while 46% remain in the bottom two levels.
  • When we compared higher-scoring VoC programs with lower-scoring programs, we found that companies with mature programs are more successful, technology-focused, and mobile-oriented and have more full-time staff and more involved senior executives.
  • Companies with more mature VoC programs identified “integration across systems” as the most common obstacle they face, while less mature VoC programs struggle the most with “cooperation across the organization.”

Download report for $195+
Buy the State of the Voice Of the customer programs report

Here’s the VoC competency & maturity levels, which is one of 29 graphics in the report:

Voice of the customer competency and maturity levels

Download report for $195+Buy the state of the voice of the customer programs report


Report Outline:

  • VoC Programs are Successful, But Have Room To Improve
  • Assessing the Maturity of VoC Programs
    • Six D’s: Detect, Disseminate, Diagnose, Discuss, Design, and Deploy
    • Five Levels of VoC Maturity – From Novices to Transformers
  • Anatomy of Successful VoC Programs
  • Propel Your VoC Program to the Next Generation

 

Figures in the Report:

  1. Effectiveness of Voice of the Customer Programs
  2. Evaluation of Voice of the Customer Elements
  3. Where Companies Get Value From VoC Programs
  4. How Technology Enables Voice of the Customer Programs
  5. Changing Importance of Customer Insight Channels
  6. Collecting Customer Feedback Via Mobile
  7. Structure of Voice of the Customer Organizations
  8. Responsibilities of Voice of the Customer Teams
  9. Voice of the Customer Executive Involvement
  10. Obstacles to Voice of the Customer Success
  11. Six D’s of a Successful Closed-Loop Voice of the Customer Program
  12. Maturity Levels of Voice of the Customer Programs
  13. Temkin Group Voice of the Customer Program Competency and Maturity Assessment (Page 1 of 2)
  14. Temkin Group Voice of the Customer Program Competency and Maturity Assessment (Page 2 of 2)
  15. 10 Highest Scoring Competency Questions
  16. 10 Lowest Scoring Competency Questions
  17. Competency Questions That Increased The Most Between 2016 and 2017
  18. Competency Questions That Decreased The Most Between 2016 and 2017
  19. Voice of the Customer Competency and Maturity Levels
  20. Voice of the Customer Competency and Maturity Levels, Changes
  21. Success Rates of VoC Programs Based on VoC Maturity
  22. VoC Insight Sources and Technology Based on VoC Maturity
  23. Mobile VoC Based on VoC Maturity
  24. Areas of Success Based on VoC Maturity
  25. The VoC Organization Based on VoC Maturity
  26. Responsibilities of VoC Teams Based on VoC Maturity
  27. Senior Executive Involvement in VoC Based on VoC Maturity
  28. Key Obstacles Based on VoC Maturity
  29. Percentiles of Results From Temkin Group VoC Competency & Maturity Assessment

Download report for $195+Buy the state of the voice of the customer programs report

CX Design Wins A Nobel Prize

Richard Thaler nobel prizeIn case you missed it, Richard Thaler won the Nobel Prize in Economics. He’s a well-known behavioral economist and author of the popular book Nudge. Thaler often collaborated with another behavioral economist (and one of my favorite economists of all time), Daniel Kahneman, who won a Nobel Prize in 2002.

You may have seen Thaler in this scene from The Big Short where he and Selena Gomez explain a financial instrument called a synthetic collateralized debt obligation (CDO). [Note: there’s some foul language].

So what does this have to do with CX design?

Thaler applied behavioral economics to government interactions with citizens. Through this citizen experience design, he was able to raise the number of organ donors, increase the level of retirement savings, and improve response rates to automotive registration bills among other things.

Thaler’s work demonstrated that experience design can’t assume that humans behave in a rational manner, it must take into account that people make most of their decisions using intuitive thinking.

Intuitive thinking versus rational thinkingThat’s why behavioral economics is the foundation for what we call Design for Real People, a component of Customer Connectedness. If you’re doing any experience design, then you need to understand how people make decisions and how they respond emotionally to your actions.

The bottom line: Behavioral economics is a foundation for good CX design.

Report: Net Promoter Score Benchmark Study, 2017

Net Promoter score benchmark study, 2017We published a Temkin Group report, Net Promoter Score Benchmark Study, 2017. This is the sixth year of this study that includes Net Promoter® Scores (NPS®) on 299 companies across 20 industries based on a study of 10,000 U.S. consumers.

Here’s the executive summary:

Many large companies use Net Promoter® Score (NPS) to evaluate their customers’ loyalty. To compare scores across organizations and industries, Temkin Group measured the NPS of almost 300 companies across 20 industries based on a survey of 10,000 U.S. consumers. Here are the highlights from this benchmark:

  • With an NPS of 66, USAA’s insurance business earned the highest score in the study for the fifth year in a row.
  • Comcast received the lowest NPS for the third year in a row with a score of -9.
  • The industry average for NPS ranged from a high of 43 for auto dealers down to a low of 9 for TV & Internet service providers.
  • Citibank, whose NPS lagged 35 points behind the banking average, fell the farthest behind its peers.
  • All industries saw their average NPS decline over the past year, though Utilities dropped the most.
  • 18- to 24-year-old consumers give companies the lowest NPS (with an average score of 17 across industries), while consumers 65 and older give the highest NPS (with an average score of 38 across industries).
  • NPS is highly correlated with customer experience. On average, customer experience leaders enjoy an NPS over 18 points higher than customer experience laggards.

See the NPS Benchmark Studies from 2012, 201320142015, and 2016.

Here’s a list of companies included in this study (.pdf).

Download report for $495
(includes report (in .pdf) plus dataset in Excel)
Purchase Net Promoter Score (NPS) benchmark

Here are the NPS scores across 20 industries:
range of net promoter scores across industries

Download report for $495
(includes report (in .pdf) plus dataset in Excel)
buy Net Promoter Score (NPS) Benchmark Study


Report Outline:

  • USAA and JetBlue Lead the NPS Benchmark of 299 U.S. Companies
    • USAA and JetBlue Earn Top Spots in NPS Rankings
    • NPS Increases With Age
  • Want Higher NPS? Improve Customer Experience

 

Figures in the Report:

  1. Temkin Group Measured Net Promoter Scores For 299 Companies Across 20 Industries
  2. Net Promoter Scores (NPS): Top and Bottom 20 Companies
  3. Range of Net Promoter Scores (NPS) Across Industries
  4. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 1)
  5. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 2)
  6. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 3)
  7. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 4)
  8. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 5)
  9. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) By Industry (Page 6)
  10. Promoters, Passives, and Detractors By Industry
  11. Net Promoter Scores (NPS): Most Above and Below Industry Average
  12. Industry Average NPS, 2015 to 2017
  13. Net Promoter Score (NPS) by Age by Industry
  14. Customer Experience Correlates To Net Promoter Scores (NPS)

Download report for $495
(includes report (in .pdf) plus dataset in Excel)
buy Net Promoter Score (NPS) Benchmark Study

If you want to know what data is included in this report and dataset, download this sample Excel dataset file.download Net promoter score study data sets

If you’re looking to create a strong NPS program, check out our VoC/NPS Resource Page.

P.S. Net Promoter Score, Net Promoter, and NPS are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems, and Fred Reichheld.

Report: Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2017 (B2B)

tech vendor NPS benchmark studyWe just published a Temkin Group report, Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2017. The research examines Net Promoter Scores® (NPS®) and the link to loyalty for 58 tech vendors based on feedback from 800 IT decision makers in large North American organizations. We also compared overall results to our benchmarks from the previous five years. Here’s the executive summary:

For the sixth year in a row, we looked at the correlation between NPS and loyalty for technology vendors. To examine this link, we surveyed 800 IT decision-makers from large North American firms, asking about their relationships with their technology providers. Through this research, we found that:

  • Across the 58 tech vendors we examined, NPS ranged from +43 to -22.
  • Microsoft, SAS, Google, and VMware earned the highest NPS, while Accenture consulting, ACS, Autodesk, and Fujitsu received the lowest.
  • Overall, the average NPS for the tech vendor industry decreased by more than eight points from last year, down from 29.9 to 21.4 – the lowest level of any year we’ve studied.
  • Our analysis shows that NPS is correlated to customers’ willingness to spend more with tech vendors, try their new products and services, forgive them after a bad experience, and act as a reference for them with prospective clients.
  • When it comes to loyalty, IT decision-makers are most likely to purchase more from Microsoft and HP, try new offerings from Microsoft and Google, forgive SAS and Microsoft if they make a mistake, and act as a reference for Apple and IBM SPSS.

The report includes graphics with data for NPS, likelihood to repurchase, Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient (likely to try new offerings).. The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 58 companies as well as summary data for other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2016.

Download report for $695
Purchase includes Excel spreadsheet with data.
Download sample spreadsheet to see details. 
buy tech vendor nps benchmark study

As you can see in the chart below, the NPS ranges from a high of 43 for Microsoft servers down to  a low of -22 for Fujitsu.the Net promoter score of 58 tech vendors

The industry average NPS decreased from 29.9 last year to 21.4 this year this year.

the average net promoter score for tech vendors

Report details: The report includes graphics with data for NPS, likelihood to repurchase, Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient (likely to try new offerings). The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 58 companies as well as summary data for other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2016.

Download report for $695
Purchase includes Excel spreadsheet with data.
Download sample spreadsheet to see details. 
download net promoter score for tech vendors report


Report Outline:

  • Net Promoter Scores for 58 Tech Vendors
    • Microsoft, SAS, Google, and VMware Earn Top Net Promoter Scores
    • Net Promoter Score Correlates to Multiple Aspects of Loyalty

 

Figures in the Report:

  1. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) of 58 Tech Vendors
  2. Average NPS for Tech Vendors, 2012 to 2017
  3. Likely to Repurchase for Tech Vendors
  4. NPS Versus Likely to Repurchase
  5. Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient (TIEQ) of Tech Vendors
  6. NPS Versus Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient
  7. Temkin Forgiveness Ratings(TFR) of Tech Vendors
  8. NPS Versus Temkin Forgiveness Ratings
  9. Willing to Be A Reference For Tech Vendors
  10. NPS Versus Willingness To Act As A Reference

Download report for $695
Purchase includes Excel spreadsheet with data.
Download sample spreadsheet to see details. 
download net promoter score for tech vendors report

 

Note: See our 2016 NPS benchmark2015 NPS benchmark2014 NPS benchmark2013 NPS benchmark and 2012 NPS benchmark for tech vendors as well as our page full of NPS resources.

P.S. Net Promoter Score, Net Promoter, and NPS are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems, and Fred Reichheld.

The Power of Customer Journey Thinking (Infographic)

I hate to break this news to you, but your customers most often interact with your organization because they have to, not because they want to. And when they do connect with you, it’s part of a larger journey that they’re on to achieve something more important than the interaction with you.

That’s why it’s critical for organizations to understand and to design experiences for their customers’ journeys.

A few years ago, we introduced the concept of Customer Journey Thinking (TM). It’s a simple tool for employees across an organization to continuously focus on customers’ journeys. As you can see in the infographic below, it’s all about asking and answering five simple questions.

Customer journey thinking infographic explaining best practices for using customer journey mapping.You can download the infographic in several forms:

Report: Renovating Your Voice of the Customer Program

renovating your voice of the customer programWe just published a Temkin Group report, Renovating Your Voice of the Customer Program.

Here’s the executive summary:

Voice of the customer (VoC) programs are essential to any customer experience effort. In recent years, VoC efforts have continued to expand and support their organizations; however, going forward they will need to adapt to significant changes in data sources, technology, operational pressures, and consumer behavior. In this report, Temkin Group details how companies can propel their VoC programs into the future by:

  • Identifying Six Customer Insight Trends that will reshape VoC programs: 1) Deep Empathy, Not Stacks of Metrics; 2) Continuous Insights, Not Periodic Studies; 3) Customer Journeys, Not Isolated Interactions; 4) Useful Prescriptions, Not Past Descriptions; 5) Enterprise Intelligence, Not Customer Feedback; and 6) Mobile First, Not Mobile Responsive.
  • Sharing 30 examples that exemplify innovative VoC practices across each of the trends.
  • Helping companies lay the groundwork for VoC innovation with a description of how to drive change through three distinct stages.

For this report, we received submissions of innovative VoC practices from Confirmit, InMoment, Rant & Rave, Qualtrics, Verint, and Walker.

Download report for $195+
Buy Renovating your voice of the customer program report

Here are the best practices described in the report:

Innovative voice of the customer practices

Download report for $195+download renovating your voice of the customer program


Report Outline:

  • Voice of the Customer Programs Need an Overhaul
  • Six Trends That Will Reshape VoC and Customer Insights
  • Best Practices For Tapping Into VoC Trends
    • Trend #1: deep Empathy, Not Stacks of Metrics
    • Trend #2: Continuous Insights, Not Periodic Studies
    • Trend #3: Customer Journeys, Not Isolated Interactions
    • Trend #4: Useful Prescriptions, Not Past Descriptions
    • Trend #5: Enterprise Intelligence, Not Customer Feedback
    • Trend #6: Mobile First, Not Mobile Responsive
  • Introduce Innovation Throughout VoC Programs

 

Figures in the Report:

  1. Growing Role of Technology and Insight Sources in VoC
  2. Vendor-Submitted Best Practices By Trend
  3. Vendor-Submitted Best Practices By Trend
  4. Vendor-Submitted Best Practices BY Trend
  5. Innovative VoC Practices Across the Six Customer Insight Trends
  6. Intuit Design for Delight (D4D)
  7. GE Healthcare: Adventure Series
  8. Petsmart: Collecting Non-Mobile Feedback Through Mobile
  9. Mobile Telecommunications: Explore Variation by Channel
  10. Ally Bank: Design Standardized Methods For Prioritizing Insights
  11. Using Text Analytics to Understand Satisfaction Scores
  12. Example of Condensed Survey Design
  13. Probe for Immediate Survey Follow-Up
  14. Example of Mobile-Friendly Alert for Employees
  15. Customer Insights Readiness Checklist
  16. Mobile Feedback Transforms the Six D’s of Voice of the Customer

Download report for $195+download renovating your voice of the customer program

The Human Conversational Model (Infographic)

In the report, Humanizing Digital Interactions, we decoded successful person-to-person interactions as a step in developing the Human Conversational Model. It’s the foundation for building compelling interactions with customers. This infographic provides an overview of the model and shows how to apply it to your digital efforts.

Foundations for humanizing customer interactionsYou can download the infographic in several forms:

How Comcast Ignored This Customer’s Journey

Customer journey mappingWe recently had an experience with Comcast that shows the importance of Customer Journey Thinking™. I’m not sharing this example to pick on Comcast (although it can be an easy target for bad customer experience given its consistently poor performance in the Temkin Experience Ratings), but instead I want to get across a key lesson for all companies.

We had a problem with our cable box and the Comcast phone agent said that we could bring it to the local Comcast center and get a new one. It’s a good move by Comcast to let people self-repair as much as possible; it keeps costs down and allows customers to accelerate the corrective action.

I wasn’t sure which of the cables that plug into the cable box I needed to bring, so I just grabbed the power cable. We went to Comcast and got the new box. Voila, success!

Unfortunately, that was not the end of the story. We got the cable box home and it didn’t work. There were no instructions. It wasn’t until a Comcast repairman showed up in a couple of days that we found out that the problem wasn’t with the box, it was with the remote. We needed to reprogram our remote.

What went wrong? Comcast treated our experience as a set of isolated interactions, instead of viewing our experience as a multi-step journey. We were looking for our TV to work again, and Comcast treated us as if we wanted to get help over the phone and swap a box at the local Comcast shop.

That’s where Customer Journey Thinking (CJM) comes into play. CJM is a way to focus on customers’ journeys when you are creating a new product, service, interaction, or experience. It requires people to always ask (and answer) these five questions:

  1. Who is the customer?
  2. What is the customer’s real goal?
  3. What did the customer do right before? (repeat three times)
  4. What will the customer do right afterwards? (repeat three times)
  5. What will make the customer happy?

Let’s say we were working at Comcast when they were looking at the self-service transaction of swapping a cable box at the Comcast stores. Here’s how a simple use of the CJM might have worked.

The team working on what looked like a modem swap st the Comcast store would have gone through the questions something like this:

  1. Who is the customer?
    • Are we targeting people who regularly swap out cable boxes and programs our remotes, or is our key market people who are much less familiar with our products and processes. We need to keep in mind any steps that might not be obvious or easy to understand for this type of customer (Note: As a best practice, it would be great to name an explicit design persona that we’re focusing on for this process).
  2. What is the customer’s real goal?
    • This customer probably wants to get his/her TV to start working again.
  3. What did the customer do right before? (repeat three times)
    • Unplugged the cable box and cables and drove to the Comcast store.
    • Went online to find the local Comcast store and its operating hours.
    • Spoke to someone at Comcast (or went online) where they found out that they could swap out the box.
  4. What will the customer do right afterwards? (repeat three times)
    • Take the box home.
    • Plug the box in.
    • Try and use the television… oops, they might not know they have to reprogram their remote.
  5. What will make the customer happy?
    • Getting their TV up and running quickly without any frustrations along the way.

If you were part of the team that went through these CJM questions, then you might have realized that the in-store element was only a piece in the overall journey, and that target customers would likely run into problems.

Using that Insight, the team might have identified these types of opportunities to improve the customers’ journey:

  • Have phone agents explain (or send a link to simple instructions about) which cables to bring with you when you swap out the box and explain that you will likely have to reprogram your remote.
  • At the store, provide instructions on reprogramming the remote and explain that it is a natural part of the process.
  • Send an email to customers who swap boxes with a link to instructions (including reprogramming of remote) and a diagnostic app if the box is not working properly.

The bottom line: Companies (not just Comcast) need to obsess about their customers’ journeys.

CX Competency: Customer Connectedness (Video)

Temkin Group has found that the only path to sustainable customer experience differentiation is to build a customer-centric culture. How? By mastering Four Customer Experience Core Competencies.

This video provides an overview of one of those competencies, Customer Connectedness, where the goal is to infuse customer insight across the organization.

Here Are Four Strategies For Customer Connectedness:

Customer Connectedness


CX Sparks: Guides For Stimulating Customer Experience DiscussionsThis video is a great introduction to a discussion with your team. That’s why we’ve created a CX Sparks guide that you can download and use to lead a stimulating discussion.