Often times whether or not a company succeeds or fails in Customer Service Performance is a result of what happens in the very top levels of the executive offices of that company. What are the true KPI for Customer Service Performance and how are they measured?
The headlines scream about another CEO or CFO defrauding the company or being disgraced. Why is it happening so often? Believe it or not what you are seeing might be reflected in the Customer Service given by the front line personnel to the company's clients.Consider this. Executives' compensation packages are often based on salary and bonuses which are paid out in stock options. The stock options are often so lucrative that the salary looks infinitesimal by comparison. The executive is then motivated to, above all else, see the stock prices go up even if it means alienating customers or even bankrupting the company. When the stock goes up the Executive sells it. Some companies have tried to curtail these practices by disallowing the sale of stock by employees. Of course then the motivation becomes to inflate the stock as much as possible, even temporarily, quit, then sell the stock.So how does this reflect in Customer Service Performance? A company whose KPI are primarily incentive based will usually infuse that philosophy throughout the corporate structure. Thus Customer Service becomes as incentive based as the CEO's stock options or the commission paid to the sales staff. An order comes down from the executive offices that no call should take longer than 7 minutes to complete or that Call Center employees' bonuses are based on clearing the maximum number of calls quickly and “efficiently.” That's fine until a major issue comes up that takes longer than 20 minutes and then, suddenly the previously helpful call center rep is doing everything possible to hustle the caller off the line. Soon the call center reps are hanging up on customers in order to inflate their calls/shift ratio.As long as Customer Service Performance KPI are based on the quantifiable rather than the true level of satisfaction of the Customer, these scenarios will continue to frustrate the buying public. That's why some companies have introduced more reliable systems of measuring Customer Service Performance. These new KPI more accurately reflect whether or not the Customer actually feels that they've received a level of service that meets their needs. These models look something like this: When the clients' questions have been answered a series of questions are asked by the Customer Service rep. “Are you satisfied with the responses to your queries?” “Were your questions answered adequately and professionally?” “Is there anything else we can help you with today?” Sometimes these questions are asked by the rep themselves and sometimes a follow up call is made by a supervisor or another rep. The Customer's response to those qualitative questions becomes the primary Customer Service Performance KPI. By shifting the KPI from quantity to quality personnel are more inclined to leave a Customer truly satisfied.