Report: The State Of Voice Of The Customer Programs

We just published a new report, The State Of Voice Of The Customer (VoC) Programs.

Did you ever wonder what large organizations are doing in the area of VoC programs? This report goes a long way in answering that question. So you may be interested in the results if you want to benchmark your efforts against other firms or identify areas of focus for your VoC program. Vendors may want to fine-tune their product and marketing plans based on this extensive research,

Here’s an excerpt from the executive summary:

This report looks at the make-up of 119 VoC programs at large companies across geographic regions, feedback channels, executive involvement, effectiveness of different activities, obstacles to success, and plans for 2011. We also examine results from the Temkin Group’s VoC Program Maturity Assessment that was completed by 105 of these firms. It turns out that only 1% of the firms reached our highest maturity level, “Transformers.” To understand how VoC programs differ by size of an organization, we compared survey responses between large and small companies. The number of companies planning to increase spending dwarfs those that are planning to cut back, so 2011 should be an active year for VoC programs.

Download report for $195

The report is rich with data; containing 25 figures. You can see an outline of the report with all of the figure titles if you download the sample report (.pdf). Here are a few of the myriad of data points:

  • 79% of companies already report positive results (it’s too early to tell for most of the rest)
  • Nearly 80% of companies currently use email for collecting customer feedback, but only 22% use social media sites and 3% use iPhone applications. Yet…
  • …when it comes to channels that companies are actively considering, 35% of firms are looking at social media and 21% are looking at mobile applications — foreshadowing a lot of growth.
  • Using the Temkin Group’s Voice Of The Customer Maturity Assessment, the study also identified that only 1% of companies with at least 2,000 employees and 9% of smaller companies attained the highest level of maturity, a stage that Temkin Group calls “Transformers.” The vast majority of the companies wound up in the earliest stages of maturity.

Download report for $195

The bottom line: Is your VoC program on the right track?

About Bruce Temkin
I am a customer experience transformist, helping large organizations improve business results by changing how they deal with customers. As part of this focus, I examine strategy, marketing, interaction design, customer service, and leadership practices. I am also a fanatical student of business, so this blog provides an outlet for sharing insights from my ongoing educational journey. Simply put, I am passionate about spotting emerging best practices and helping companies master them. And, as many people know, I love to speak about these topics in almost any forum. My “title” is Managing Partner of the Temkin Group, a customer experience research and consulting firm that helps organizations become more customer-centric. Our goal is simple: accelerate the path to delighting customers. I am also the co-founder and chair of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA.org), a non-profit organization dedicated to the success of CX professionals.

2 Responses to Report: The State Of Voice Of The Customer Programs

  1. Joseph Kurian says:

    I am currently working on building a VoC program in my current organization. However I also believe that to truly become a ‘customer centric’ organization we have to also manage and run a VoE program to show we are listening, learning and reacting to what our ‘internal’ customers want and need. While it has risks, I do believe that the learnings we can reach for internal VoE programs can be as valid as the clear value we define for VoC programs. Curious to know your thoughts on the importance of a VoE program. Thanks Bruce.

    • patrick buono says:

      Hi Mr. Kurian,
      I actually built a VOE program at a large Telecom back in the early to mid- 90’s when I inherited an under-preforming regional operation. Our customer Churn (Customer defections) rates where in the low 20’s. My analysis indicated that 77% of those defections occured within 90 days of customer acquisition. The biggest ah-ha – the 90 day window was consistent with the customers first billing cycle. I found a set of actionable solutions (ideas) to our churn causes by asking the front-line employees – the CSR’s, their supervisors and quality traininers in the call centers and retail locations that directly inter-acted with our customers. I implemented a set of programs that reducted churn from low 20% to low teens, which may not seem like a big % except our monthly customer acquisition #’s were in the 10’s of thousands. I have a scientifc background (school) so I ran a control group, just to make sure our program results were not affected by other variables. The control groups’ churn remained flat, while the test group showed significant improvement. The hardest part of the process was convincing managment to implement our solutions, so make sure you can show (demonstrate) quantifiable improvements. Dollars are the universal language of business people, so I showed that not only would our program lower cost, but the % of customers who did NOT defect represented a considerable Life-time Economic Value to the company even if we only retained them for another 6 and 18 months! Forward looking: a VoE program can be used not only to find solutions to nagging problems but expose potential customer effecting problems before they result in loosing millions of customers annually. There are other benefits of a VoE program, including improved front-line communication and commitment, as well as a less reactive and more pro-active customer experience attitude by customer facing teams, including management

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