By: Greg Coleman, Service Strategies
The Service Capability & Performance (SCP) Standards, the leading quality standard for service and support operations, measures the effectiveness based upon a stringent set of performance standards. A key part of the SCP Standards lies in the Customer Feedback area. The program includes specific customer satisfaction targets for at least two types of surveys, as well as elements related to direct feedback from customers through face-to-face interactions. Throughout the history of the program, customer satisfaction levels of SCP Certified service and support operations have been observed to be rising. These observations are validated through the approximately one hundred onsite certification audits that take place each year. The audits include a detailed review of customer satisfaction processes and results for certified companies. In addition, the observations are further validated though benchmarking of audit results across the community.
So what is driving higher customer satisfaction results for certified operations? Certified organizations tend to place a greater emphasis on leveraging the results of customer feedback to generate action plans that address areas identified by customers as creating dissatisfaction. The diligent effort to address these issues has a clear impact on customer perceptions. In addition, the certified organizations are creating improved programs for customer advocacy and technical account management designed to ensure customer success, thereby positively impacting retention and loyalty. These organizations have also developed improved processes that ensure timely and effective resolution of customer complaints. As part of the implementation of the improved complaint handling processes, better analysis of the issues driving complaints is taking place therefore enabling the certified centers to take steps to eliminate the root cause of these issues.
In addition to better executing and leveraging customer feedback processes, SCP certified organizations have placed a greater emphasis on linking customer feedback and satisfaction results to management compensation and staff performance. Through this linkage, the management teams focus on driving improvements that result in higher customer satisfaction levels since they have a financial stake in doing so. The same is true for linking staff performance to customer satisfaction. The linkage provides a focus at the point of customer contact, thereby motivating the staff to deliver the highest quality service experience possible.
The SCP Standards program drives service and support organizations to take these kinds of steps to ensure that all forms of customer feedback are used to improve service operations. The program also emphasizes the importance of creating a personal investment in customer satisfaction for the staff and management teams. As the SCP program has evolved, customer satisfaction measurements have been updated with new targets and stringent requirements for compliance. Enhancements continue to be made to elements associated with customer interaction management, knowledge management and resource planning processes. These and many more enhancements that are made annually to the standards help ensure that SCP certified organizations continue their excellent progress in improving the services delivered to their customers, thereby further enhancing customer satisfaction, retention and loyalty.