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NPS Scores and CX Scorecards: Is Your Survey Data Telling the Whole Story?


The Team at CallMiner

November 15, 2017

Woman with headset in a virtual world
Woman with headset in a virtual world

Numbers don’t lie. Or do they? Net Promoter Scores (NPS) and similar measures are often touted as valuable tools for keeping a finger on the pulse of customer satisfaction and improving the customer experience. And they are – but relying on this data alone fails to paint the full picture that today’s contact centers need to drive results and increase efficiency.

A Brief Refresher on NPS and CX Scorecards

Net Promoter Scores are calculated using a simple survey which asks consumers how likely they are to recommend your products or services to a friend or colleague. The given response of an individual places that consumer into one of three categories:

  • 9 – 10: Promoters are consumers who are loyal brand advocates and fuel future growth for your company.
  • 7 – 8: Passives are the consumers who are satisfied with the products or services they’re receiving but haven’t been “wowed.” These consumers aren’t overly enthusiastic and may be easily led astray by a competitive offer.
  • 0 – 6: Detractors are the dissatisfied consumers who can actually hinder growth and are likely to damage your brand through negative word-of-mouth.

As you can see, NPS scores are based on pretty broad categories, and they also rely on self-reporting, which is less reliable than objective analysis. CX scorecards take it a bit further. While there are several models for CX scorecards, they generally include a Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) combined with other metrics aimed at measuring and managing CX performance.

Too often, customer satisfaction is confused with customer experience; they are not the same. While customer satisfaction is an important component of the overall customer experience, to paint a clearer picture, a more robust CX scorecard should contain several types of metrics including:

  • Descriptive – what happens during customer interactions
  • Perceptual – a measure of whether CX initiatives meet customer expectations (such as Customer Satisfaction Score, CSAT)
  • Outcome – what actions customers take as a result of their experience

Still, without additional data, CX scorecards don’t provide insight on what really matters: what factors are actually driving customer satisfaction? Changes that influence these drivers are where you can make the biggest impact in improving the customer experience, boosting satisfaction, and increasing customer loyalty (and thus, revenue). To drive smarter decision-making that can directly influence the customer experience and improve outcomes, you need objective analytics to support self-report data from surveys.

The Shortcomings of Survey Data

Surveys can be helpful, but data gleaned from surveys can often be misleading – and they fail to account for other metrics that matter. Surveys often fail to capture the complete cross-channel experience, encompassing both emerging communications channels (such as web chat, mobile, and social media) and traditional channels, such as telephone interactions. But with 90% of customer interactions still taking place over the phone, failing to account for these interactions means you’re missing a huge piece of the puzzle.

Instead of relying solely on self-report surveys that are heavily influenced by the customer’s most recent interaction on a single channel, today’s companies should be focused on creating a single, comprehensive view of every individual customer across channels to provide a personalized, seamless experience in the omnichannel world. To achieve this goal, companies must:

  • Capture information across platforms
  • Leverage historical context to provide a personalized experience
  • Understand the complete customer journey to effectively identify the root cause of issues and more readily resolve them

For call centers, that means moving beyond surveys – even moving beyond interaction analytics – and enabling cross-channel customer engagement. But to create a true omnichannel experience, customers must be able to flow seamlessly between multiple channels, continuing conversations started on one channel on another, without the need to rehash and restate their problems or concerns with each new interaction. Instead, call center agents should already have access to the relevant historical context.

Simple survey data, such as NPS scores, can’t account for the myriad channels and touchpoints through which consumers are interacting with your brand. They don’t analyze what actions customers actually take after reporting that they’re extremely satisfied, extremely dissatisfied, or moderately satisfied. Most importantly, they don’t really offer insight into how well those cross-channel initiatives are working, and therefore they don’t provide the insights needed to make strategic decisions aimed at improving the customer experience.

Gaining a Comprehensive, Single View of the Customer

That’s not to say that these surveys don’t provide valuable information; they’re still a relevant piece of the puzzle. But in the omnichannel world, call centers need sophisticated, cross-channel customer journey analytics to eliminate data silos and create a comprehensive view of the entire customer journey from start to finish. Only with this comprehensive, cohesive customer view can call centers not only make it possible for customers to interact with the company on a multitude of channels and ensure that those channels function seamlessly, but also gain critical insights such as:

  • Whether agents are equipped with the necessary relevant historical information to support customers on any interaction channel
  • Which interactions drive outcomes (both negative and positive)
  • What drives customers to take desired actions
  • Whether customers’ expectations are being met across every channel
  • At what points along the customer journey the experience becomes disjointed

When interaction channels and their associated data are isolated in silos, gaining a comprehensive customer view is impossible. That’s why simple NPS surveys and CX scorecards fall short of providing the insights call centers need to provide a fully omnichannel experience. But as consumers increasingly expect to interact with brands across myriad channels seamlessly, call centers will need to move beyond basic survey data to capture the complete customer journey.

Does your data exist in silos? What are the biggest challenges your call center faces in providing an omnichannel experience?

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