In the last year, how many of you received a survey asking you to evaluate a particular associate who recently helped you or provided a service for you?
You have some service work done at your house or you go to your nearest cell phone dealer and the minute you walk out the door, you receive an email with a survey asking you, the client to complete a short survey.
This is one of the most annoying things to receive. In the last week, I have received these surveys within 2 hours of working with a service associate.
The disturbing part of this process is how associates actually ask you to give them a 5-star ranking or an “A-rating” because ultimately these surveys determine future employment actions like raises, layoffs, promotions or demotions.
Do companies really put a lot of stock in these type of surveys? The answer, sadly is yes.
Is this type of feedback really valuable to companies?
I understand many certifying groups require these types of surveys including the company I work for. I initially struggled with this topic, but I quickly found a solution that has saved me time, resources and actually provides me with great information.
Here are my thoughts on employee surveys or service in general. If you want better client service, be more transparent with your clients and truly ask for their feedback.
- Have your associates keep track of feedback comments they receive. Today, a lot of feedback can be documented via email. Have employees in your office forward all feedback to a specific feedback email group, ([email protected]) for someone to manage.
- Have a link on your website for anyone to submit comments. Provide a short survey to help organize people’s thoughts.
- Track client complaints and look for patterns: Is this a systems issue, process issue, personnel issue. Poor service could be the result of a combination of items not just personnel.
- Consider sending out a year-end survey, (1-5 questions) maximum.
- Focus on a particular group of clients. (New, Long-Term, Particular Service Provided, Location-based)
- Ask the question, “Will you consider doing business with our company in the future? (Yes or No) . This metric is more valuable than any other metric.
- Also, consider offering some type of gift to people for taking the time to answer your survey, (Example: coupon, gift card)
Client surveys should be much more than an evaluation tool for personnel. It should actually give people a chance to talk in more detail about the service they received. By using a 5-star ratingand being coached by employees to give them the highest marks possible really demeans clients’ ability to actually provide helpful feedback. In addition, it really diminishes the value of data being received. Imagine if a client was having a bad day and gave you a 2-star rating and you ended up losing your job because of this action. Who is the winner here?
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