Online retailers such as Amazon have transformed customer expectations across every market – and Communications Services Providers (CSP) are as eager to drive up their Net Promoter Score (NPS) as any other company.
Yet by failing to recognise the impact of day to day network performance, or Technical Promoter Score (TPS) on the customer experience measure CSPs are missing a trick. There is now a proven correlation between an organisation’s TPS and its NPS, and CSPs should be using this insight to target specific improvements to the Quality of Experience (QoE) of each customer to understand the overall level of satisfaction being achieved.
Performance measurement is a fundamental component of business activity. Indeed, many organisations are collecting rafts of corporate information, from KPIs about operational performance and qualitative measures such as the NPS to those that represent the TPS, or actual network quality, in near real-time. For CSPs however, there remains a clear divide between customer experience managers focused on NPS and the technical operations tracking TPS.
Right now, CSPs are pushing hard to improve their woeful NPS records. Based on customer surveys and feedback, the NPS score typically achieved by CSPs is below 20. Amazon, in contrast, routinely hits 70, leveraging its great customer history and understanding to deliver a relevant, personal and timely service.
Of course no CSP is going to make a leap from 5 to 70 overnight – or over the next few years. However, by focusing purely on soft measures, CSPs are overlooking a critical aspect of the customer experience: the day to day network performance. Good customer experience is as much about minimising dropped calls and maximising uptime as it is about friendly call centre staff.
Continuing to consider TPS and NPS as completely separate is not only divisive but also a completely flawed strategy – the two sets of metrics are clearly linked, and together determine an organisation’s overall QoE. Indeed, recent studies have revealed a clear correlation between aggregated TPS measures and NPS: those CSPs with a low NPS also have a 50% lower score on aggregated TPS. This shows that technical measures can provide organisations with a clear insight into the current QoE and, therefore, the risk of customer churn; clearly, neither should be considered in isolation.
So how should CSPs use the TPS to drive up NPS? The biggest challenge is that most systems are measured separately – with CSPs managing a raft of KPIs across 2G, 3G and 4G networks. Without an integrated approach an organisation cannot achieve a clear view of the overall performance and, hence, QoE.
With a single source of aggregated KPIs reflecting both TPS and NPS, organisations can also begin to weight KPIs based on market specific requirements. For example, should the company be most concerned about latency, the speed of Ethernet connection or the number of dropped calls? With an aggregated KPI in place, a company can both gain more insight into those factors that impact the QoE today – and evolve that weighting as product offerings and customer expectations change.
CSPs may not, just yet, have Amazon’s high NPS score in their sights but any improvement is going to reduce customer churn. A higher NPS is the goal – and the insight provided by real-time TPS now provides an essential measure to support continual improvement to the overall QoE.
By Victor Donselaar, VP Business Development, Accanto Systems