Okay, we are heavy on the automobile analogies, but both customer service teams and technical support teams understand that customer satisfaction is not a static state, but a dynamic pulse, and can change on a moments notice. This is true for product providers and especially true for service providers, who must re-prove themselves daily with their customers.

Even the best run service and support organizations need to offer customers a bypass valve to gather feedback and provide quick attention if things are not going as designed within the normal process plumbing. Many times a customers pulse is not readily or effectively measurable through support ticket systems where issues typically are recorded. Traditional periodic customer feedback surveys including surveys provided at the closure of support tickets are simply too late in the process to let support teams course-correct and get the customer back on-track in time. If lessons are learned from customer survey mechanisms that are not real-time, course-correction might help the wider customer audience in the future, but not the customer that is experiencing the issue right now.

So what are the top must-have goals to consider when choosing effective tools that collect, measure, and act upon dynamic customer feedback?

  • Real-time pulse management – Must work real-time with customers, not only leveraging backwards-looking surveys. Today, customers expect real-time results.
  • Tight feedback loops – Must have easy mechanisms for customers to quickly and easily report their satisfaction or un-satisfaction. Leverage simple tools, such as allowing a click on a web or email feedback button.
  • Speed – Must have quick course correction once feedback is received. Route to proper service and support resources who can quickly take action working directly with customers.
  • Reward the behavior you want repeated – If customers use the real-time feedback tools, you must ensure their issues are resolved quickly, so they come back and use the tool again.
  • Themes – Must perform monthly theme analysis to course-correct the larger support machine, not just the specific customer issue. Themes will develop when looking through negative feedback data, and then concentrate on solving the lowest-hanging themes first.

There are many tools available today that perform real-time customer pulse management. Find the ones that tightly integrate into your support ticket system. Use these tools not as a separate system, but as part of the natural support workflow. Some ticket systems also perform machine predictive analytics, but that is still an educated guess on the customers pulse.

In short, simply make it easy for customers to provide their satisfaction pulse through real-time tools, and then act quickly on negative feedback. Customers will stay out of the red more often.