The choice of indicators has to be made in alignment with company’s objectives. Nonetheless, companies involved in Customer Experience improvement programs have to pay close attention to the indicators selection. Having said this, there are three fundamental questions: how many indicators to follow? Which ones? Which dashboard to build?
There are a wide range of Customer Experience indicators, which have all a specific usage. Following too large a number of indicators may lead managers and directors to step away from the real objectives linked to these measures. In our mind, shared by many other key players in the market, following one to two KPIs per category (see below for the different categories) should suffice.
Once the question of the choice of indicators has been dealt with, the next one should be: which ones? Some indicators are used more often than the others. Let’s take the for example Customer Satisfaction (CSAT), according to a Gartner (Gartner How to Manage Customer Experience Metrics, May 2015) “Customer satisfaction (CSAT) is the most traditional metric and also the most widely used top-level metric with more than 70% of organizations using it. Net Promoter Score (NPS) is the second most commonly used metric by executives. It is used by more than 17% of all businesses and by more than 70% of large global enterprises. About 10% of large global enterprises are now presenting a customer effort score (CES) to executives as the most important one for them to see”. But those indicators are not the only ones in the Customer Experience scope, far from it. Having a clear vision is not always easy. Let’s look at the different steps to follow for an efficient indicators selection according to your project.
As already highlighted, this selection depends on your objectives. What do you want to achieve? Increased Sales? Reduced Churn? Lower Cost of services? Avoidance of negative buzz? Greater Loyalty and recommendations? For each objective corresponds an indicators category that you will have to consciously select in order to focus on what you want to identify. A quasi-exhaustive list of indicators has being created by the Gartner Group. They are classified into four major categories: quality, customer satisfaction, loyalty and brand promotion. But be aware that inside those categories there are numerous indicators. If you need advice, ask a market expert such as MediaTech Solutions to provide the necessary support for you in your approach.
Once the KPIs are chosen, the second step is to build personalized dashboards showing the indicators developments and resulted actions. You will need a continuous vision on those KPIs. Hence, the importance to have access to dashboard giving you the right information at the right time. Reducing the number of indicators will allow you to have an efficient view of your business on your dashboards. Update them in real time as much as possible to be able to take the necessary corrective actions. And finally share them across the organization, at least with line managers, but all management levels need to have access to them, including those in direct contact with customers. It would be sensible that operational managers don’t have the same dashboard than top managers. Each one should have monitoring view that will help them to make decisions within their scopes. This process can obviously be applied to Feedback Management project implementation. Whether you choose to evaluate customer perception in real-time, after two days or even later, the rule remains the same.
To sum-up, before each implementation of a Customer Experience improvement program, clarify your objectives, choose the right KPI relevant to them (two to four are sufficiently ample) and to your market and gather them in personalized dashboards according to your needs (needs might be different from one department to another one and according to the management level). The importance is to foster results communication between departments and make the right links between them. This process implemented, you should be able to intervene in a rapid way to adjust operational plans if needed. The key to success: precise KPIs management, it will become your best ally to reach Customer Experience excellence!
Hervé CEBULA, CEO MediaTech Solutions