Consider sending out a batch of customer surveys and finding out that your average client happiness index (CHI) is a “49” (for a reminder about this metric, check out Chapter 2). And, on average, your clients give you an “8.4” on the measure of likelihood to refer you to a friend or colleague. Is this good, bad, or something in between?
Well, that depends on benchmarks, an aggregate measure of the responses all companies, on average, are getting to the same question. Take a look at the benchmarks below to see why this comparison number is useful.
Remember that CHI of 49 we talked about earlier? It might have sounded low, but compared to the benchmark average of 17, it’s stellar. This company has a whole lot of delighted clients on their hands and very few disgruntled ones. And, with clients giving them an average of 8.4 on likelihood to refer, they see they are stronger again than the 8.1 benchmark average. Because of benchmarks, this company knows it is delivering a superior product and service experience.
A one-time comparison against benchmarks is good, but don’t you want to be great?
If you’re really committed to improving client satisfaction, you’ll want to keep measuring your performance over time. And that includes how you compare against the benchmark over time.
Just as you’re evolving your product and services, so too are your competitors. A one-time measurement isn’t sufficient to capture these changes, but comparing yourself against the benchmark quarter over quarter, or half over half, will let you see how you’re trending.
And this is where online survey platforms like CLIENTpulse are a great resource. Benchmarks like these are reported out and recorded over time. You get a longitudinal view on performance, and get to see if it’s time to whip up a plan to improve client satisfaction. (Need some ideas about how to prioritize your action plans? See Chapter 12.)
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