The Top 10 Voice of the Customer (VOC) Best Practices -- New Paper from Allegiance, Inc. and Endeavor Management -- Provides key insights on how to win the race for customer trust and business
SALT LAKE CITY, March 30, 2010 -- With the recent failures of big financial institutions, consumers have been left wondering, "Who can we trust?" To restore consumer confidence and improve customer relationships, companies must gain a better understanding of customers' needs, wants and concerns. Allegiance, Inc., a leading provider of Voice of the Customer (VOC) solutions, and Endeavor Management, today announced the availability of the complimentary white paper "The Top 10 Voice of the Customer (VOC) Best Practices," which provides no-cost, practical ways to implement and build customer feedback programs.
"Today, businesses must have a formal Voice of the Customer program in place to systematically capture, manage, and act on customer feedback across the enterprise and ensure that feedback gets incorporated into their organization," said Kyle LaMalfa, best practices director and loyalty expert for Allegiance, Inc. "Along with this, companies must ensure that they are putting the right people, processes and technology in place to support these programs."
The paper includes successful VOC programs used by industry leaders Amazon, Best Buy and Ultradent. Some of the practices that ensure an effective VOC program include:
1. Open the gates to customer feedback: An important part of staying in touch with customer needs and wants is gathering customer feedback such as concerns, complaints, questions, suggestions, and ideas. Companies should strive to gather feedback that is both useable and actionable.
2. Make feedback collection part of the routine: Companies must not only gather customer feedback on a regular basis, but also respond to it quickly, as consumer behavior can change in an instant. Responding in a timely manner increases the likelihood that a customer will buy again, especially if the company resolves the complaint in the customer's favor.
3. Know what the feedback says: Customer-centric organizations continually aim to understand what customers are trying to tell them, where customer feedback is coming from, and the underlying factors that are driving customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction. In other words, they understand both the data and the factors that may be affecting that data.
4. Take real and deliberate action: Companies need to be both organized and prepared to respond to and act on customer feedback. This includes having a systematic feedback program in place that defines who will respond to the feedback, how and when, and what the company's general policy will be for taking action on customer feedback. They should also evaluate whether or not that action had a positive impact on their customers' experience, loyalty and engagement.
5. Close the feedback loop: A crucial part in responding to customer feedback is establishing a closed-loop feedback process to ensure that every significant piece of customer feedback receives the level of attention and response that it deserves.
6. Ensure benefits are realized: Measuring a return on investment (ROI) as well as tangible business outcomes is crucial to gaining support for VOC programs. Today's best practice VOC leaders actively work to tie their programs to business outcomes and communicate that data to their company's executive team and employees.
"Listening to and understanding the voice of the customer is crucial to restoring consumer trust in businesses and building customer loyalty, engagement and advocacy,' said Bob Caruso, managing director, Endeavor Management. "Ultimately, it will be those companies that truly listen to their customers that will not only win customers' trust and business, but set themselves apart from the competition."
For a complete copy of the paper "The Top 10 Voice of the Customer (VOC) Best Practices," visit http://www.allegiance.com/top10voc.
For additional insights and trends for today's VOC Practitioners, download the complimentary "Voice of the Customer Industry Research Report" at http://www.allegiance.com/vocreport.
Allegiance Supporting Resources
1. Allegiance press room
About Allegiance, Inc.
2. Voice of the Customer Blog (http://blog.allegiance.com)
3. Become a Fan of Allegiance on Facebook
4. Follow Allegiance on Twitter ( http://twitter.com/allegiancetweet)
5. Allegiance customer success stories and white papers
Allegiance, Inc. offers next generation Voice of the Customer (VOC) and feedback management software to help organizations grow customer and employee loyalty and engagement. The Allegiance Engage Software platform facilitates survey creation and gathers responses and unsolicited comments in real-time into a centralized online system, saving time, effort and money. Allegiance solutions measure customer and employee engagement, revealing precise actions to grow engagement and increase revenue. Allegiance Enterprise Feedback Management (EFM), predictive analytics, and professional services combine to help businesses capitalize on engagement. In 2009, Allegiance was ranked 58th on the list of the 500 fastest growing, privately held companies in the U.S. by Inc. Magazine. For more information about Allegiance, visit http://www.allegiance.com . To register for the Allegiance Engage Summit 2010, visit http://engagesummit.com.
About Endeavor Management
Endeavor Management services are designed to help build future leaders internally, in real time by providing the expertise, experience and mentorship to enable them to take on current, real strategic business challenges and help them to achieve results they may not have been capable of by themselves in the areas of:
-Strategy Formulation and Realization
-Market and Customer Development
-New Products and Services Design and Launch
-Strategic Acquisition or Divestiture
-Strategic Organizational Change Management
-Strategic Workforce Development
For more information, visit www.endeavormgmt.com.