Customer Survey Design and Customer Satisfaction Improvement

Customer Survey Design and Customer Satisfaction Improvement

Surveys are a time-honored way to assess the reactions of customers to a product or service, and many organizations regard their customer satisfaction score as a percent grade of their success at pleasing customers. Yet while the customer satisfaction score may be an important indicator, other survey measures may in fact be more useful and actionable.

For example, Intent to Repurchase can be used either alone or in combination with satisfaction and other outcome measures to predict actual customer repurchase rates. In addition, customer ratings of more specific product or service attributes (such as Product Ease-of-Use, Service Timeliness or Responsiveness) usually provide more specific information to guide improvement, since they suggest specific performance areas where providers can improve products or service methods. Moreover, in some situations, an Overall Satisfaction score may actually be misleading as a measure of a service providerÍs performance. This can occur when the customer's choice of a provider is limited, for instance because the provider is an internal service department, such as Accounting, Technical Support, or Human Resources.

In this case, service levels are often constrained by cost considerations, and a goal of 100% satisfied customers may therefore be unreasonable. More important measures for choice-constrained services are attributes such as Accessibility and Problem Resolution, which are expected to be higher for sole-source providers. In addition, it often helps to assess the customerÍs perception of Cost, since Cost perceptions can be combined with other attributes to yield a measure of Perceived Value, an important predictor of customer behavior.

In order to optimize the use of a customer survey, a key step is to establish a cross-functional team to assess how the survey is being used and identify ways to make it more useful in product/service improvement. Wolf Management Consultants can assess your current customer survey process and recommend improvements, design or improve survey questionnaires, identify repurchase ñdriversî, and assist stakeholders organizing teams to improve customer service.


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