I recently worked with three companies that are struggling with how to place surveys within customer insights, continuous improvement and customer experience (CX). In one company, the primary role of the survey function was to measure service transactions with an end-of-year focus on the results of the annual relationship survey. In the second company, while Net Promoter Scores (NPS) were ubiquitous and used in evaluations from the frontline staff to major business unit leaders, little seemed to be getting fixed. In a third company, only three surveys were executed but all resulted in continuous improvement and a positive impact on executive strategy. The key to a positive impact is an organized approach to using surveys appropriately and placing them within the broader voice-of-the-customer (VOC) data context.
The two key phrases for the role of surveys are “appropriate use” and “data context.” In most companies, 90 percent of survey resources allocated to CX (as opposed to market research) are devoted to measuring frontline performance and closing the loop to contact.