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March 21, 2023

Unlocking Customer Satisfaction Beyond Surveys

High angle view of a businessman looking at chart on his laptop

Tammie Briscoe

Vice President of Customer Support, Avaya

Keeping customers satisfied and retaining them is critical for every organization, but doing so is challenging in the era of the paradoxical ‘everything customer,’ as Gartner refers to them. 

Organizations today are expected to be everything to everyone by offering great products and ensuring customer interactions are completely effortless, personalized, intelligent, and consistent for every engagement – no matter the preferred platform or format customers choose. 

These factors underscore customer experience (CX) and satisfaction and are often measured with a net promoter score (NPS).  

While NPS is the most common KPI that companies use to track the experience and loyalty of their customers, it comes with limitations. The most prominent limitation is that NPS is only a number derived from customer scores at various stages of the journey meaning it represents  customers’ satisfaction levels with an organization’s products or services at a particular moment in time. 

It needs improvement offering insight into the entire lifecycle of customer interactions and explain the reasons why customers provided the feedback they did. 

As a result of this, the causes, consequences, and correlations that define customer experience and loyalty become lost, which are even more important than numbers and percentages. This has even prompted some to argue for NPS to be retired

Plugging NPS Gaps 

“This call will be recorded for quality and training purposes” is something we hear whenever we call into a contact center. 

However, only a fraction of these calls are used to drive outcomes beyond compliance, onboarding, and conflict resolution training. 

This is to the detriment of contact centers, as customer conversations are undeniably one of the best sources of information for insight into customer experiences, emotions, and perceptions. In fact, they could be the key to understanding the reasons and drivers behind the feedback customers provide when rating their interactions with a company. 

The problem is that accessing the information would mean assigning agents or other employees to manually sift through thousands of hours of call recordings and gigabytes of transcripts. This approach is unfeasible, and even if it weren’t, it would be an incredible drain on productivity that would be better spent on serving customers. 

While contact centers have become accustomed to leaning on automation for various elements of the customer journey and agent workflow, there needs to be more progress in gearing automation to analyze customer sentiment. 

As with any set of big data, analytics can convert these mammoth data sets from a contact center’s customer conversations into bite-sized, actionable insights within minutes. This ‘small data’ can then be used to make strategic decisions to resolve customer service workflows and fine-tune the customer and employee experience.  

Organizations subsequently have consistent intel to understand the real reasons behind customers’ satisfaction and dissatisfaction, and far more context for their NPS scores, culminating in improved CX. In addition, communications analytics can identify good and bad internal policies and practices, highlight user experience (UX) design gaps, and outline digestible guidance for management teams to improve existing processes. 

Evolving the measurement of customer satisfaction beyond the traditional confines of NPS and the surveys that inform them is the foundation of building a total experience. It helps contact centers and their agents get beyond just a number by overcoming the complexities and uncertainty of simple survey scores, allowing them to shape unique CX that will keep customers coming back. 

Of course, this is underpinned by an organization’s capability to support its products and services from a customer-centric position, utilizing the technology to deliver on the intended customer journey!  Are you leveraging the rich analytics from your customer touchpoints to continuously improve the customer journey?  Contact Avaya here to start transforming your customer experience.  

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