What To Do With The Feedback You Collect From Your Customers

It has been crazy and busy lately with EFM; I have been traveling the world spreading the word — and it has been so interesting.  It has amplified my views of EFM and given me lots of new ideas on what to do with this blog.  It has also given me an idea on spreading the word even faster: Twitter.  Do you twitter?  If not, you should check it out.  I am starting to spread the word on EFM via twitter — starting Monday October 13th, a new EFM insight a day via Twitter… tweet me!

I have been doing lots of thinking and working with EFM at the strategic level, and it led to me think about the need to implement EFM properly.  I am not simply talking about putting together a strategy for EFM, which I do endorse highly, but also where does it fit within the overall organizational approach to feedback.  In other words, why would an organization take on collecting, analyzing, and reporting on feedback?  After all, if you can do a survey and get some data – isn’t that enough?

Well, not quite.  The most interesting part of the question is actually what to do with the data and (more importantly) the insights collected and analyzed.  Yes, you can distribute a survey, collect some results, and report on them – even analyze them – and consider yourself done… but there is so much more.  Listen to this crazy, crazy approach to using EFM.

First, make a commitment to using feedback as valuable data.  That means you won’t just measure customer satisfaction, or yes / no to some inane questions that may, just may, earn you a bonus – but not create insights into your customers or products.  Make a commitment to using feedback wisely as a strategy, collecting and analyzing key business metrics over time.  Once you do this, you have the basis for the second step… building a dashboard.

Dashboards? how can they be related to feedback?  Well, you could build a dashboard simply by using efficiency metrics (number of calls, average handle time, average wait time, etc.), but wouldn’t you want to build one that means something for your business?  If you strategically determine the metrics that matter about your business, your services, your products — and the effectiveness-based metrics you must follow for the health of your business, you can then prepare a great real-time dashboard that shows you the health of your business — and tie those metrics to the feedback you collect!

Alas, once you create a real-time view of your important metrics, and use feedback to populate that – what about the long-term view?  Glad you asked (OK, you didn’t, I did).  Once you have a real-time, short-term view of your business it is time to make the jump to long-term, strategic measurement.  The tool we use for that is a scorecard.  Ah, yes… the scorecard.  You can use feedback to measure your key metrics over time, spot historical trends, and see where you have to invest time and resources to improve your products, services and resources.  And the best part?  You get to do this as your improve your use of feedback – from taking surveys, to adopting EFM, to implementing Dashboards and Scorecards.

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