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The net promoter score (NPS) is relevant because it has a specific purpose. While it should be paid attention to, it is a guide to CX strategies rather than an achievement by itself. As always, the goal is to maintain and improve customer relationships. Jean-Michel Maurel dissects the importance of NPS below.
Searching for success in customer service means encountering a lot of numbers. All anyone wants is the number that tells them they’re doing a great job. However, there’s never just one. Entire constellations of scores and metrics exist for this purpose, sometimes even just for the sake of creating new scores and metrics. In an effort to deliver CX that focuses on the customers being served and the agents doing their jobs, steps must be taken to demystify what these numbers are and what they’re being used for. It must be asked, then: is the net promoter score still relevant?
Simply put, the NPS has had historically high relevance because it measures how likely a customer is to recommend a brand to others, and why. It’s a post-transaction survey that stands in contrast to the customer satisfaction score (CSAT), which measures overall satisfaction with a product or service, and the customer effort score (CES), which tracks how difficult it was for the customer to get their needs met during a given brand interaction.
If someone is highly satisfied with your brand’s end-product, and it was easy to purchase that product (or easy to reach a solution to an issue with that product), it stands to reason that they’ll recommend your brand to others enthusiastically. And while that may be the case, the NPS may not be the most relevant way to reflect that.
The rush to announce the death of the net promoter score’s relevance is frenzied. Gartner already predicts that 75% of organisations will abandon NPS as a reliable metric by 2025. Justification for this abandonment is rooted in the makeup of post-transactional surveys, as the typical language used is so broad that identifying measures to improve performance is problematic. There’s also the issue of survey fatigue, as Forbes points out that 72% of consumers say that survey prompts interfere with the online buying experience.
Given those statistics, the time seems right for a reassessment of the net promoter score. Up until now, the NPS has been relevant simply because it was an available quantitative score and a corporate habit. However, it’s important to remember that these values are a means, not an end in and of themselves, even when a large sample size and high score seems like a job well done.
If you’re a contact centre manager or director, remember that the calibre of CX depends not on the numbers, but what those numbers represent. The net promoter score is relevant because it is a reflection of how well your agents are able to deliver a smooth experience for customers, and indicates how well a brand ambassador program might work for your brand. It is one metric of many, designed specifically for these purposes. The drive to turn your brand’s customers into brand ambassadors begins with delivering on the CX you promise and addressing customer pain points.
Your agents shouldn’t simply be handed any metric, such as NPS, with improvement as a target. Inappropriate use of these metrics can cause problems rather than progress. Any score good or bad needs to be interpreted to make sure it is accurate and actionable. Often this necessitates more questions such as: how is our CX strategy currently tracking? What drives CX performance and loyalty to our brand? How can we improve performance? How many of our CX issues are based on our customer journey map, and how many are because of limitations across our channels and transactions? The answers to these are more important than debates over the relevance of the NPS ever could be.
The above questions can be answered by using the right tools. Data visualisation dashboards are especially adept at lining up disparate kinds of data, helping you drill down and create reports that can better inform you on how, where and when to deploy contact centre agents and CX strategies. It’s a tool that helps you work smart, get the results you desire and help you grow your brand.
Fostering close relationships with customers is more important than scoring high on CX metrics, because the first leads to the second rather than the other way around. The net promoter score will remain relevant as long as its purpose is understood, and the focus remains on customers and agents. Odigo also puts humans first, taking a principled approach to designing CCaaS solutions and helping brands grow by providing tools to serve their customer base.
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