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Is Your Customer Experience Program Making Your Customer Experience Worse?

Jim Tincher Jim Tincher 07/01/2019
How Hard is it to Be Your Customer Book

We launched our book at this year’s CXPA Insight Exchange. We’d shipped them to the hotel ahead of time, but when I arrived, they were nowhere to be found. My tracking information showed they had been delivered, but nobody knew where they were.

The hotel recommended I call USPS to ask who signed for the packages. By this point, I was 30 minutes away from our sponsored event launching the book, so I was in a bit of a panic. I called the number and proceeded to enter a CX Nightmare. The IVR spent at least 25-30 seconds telling me how important my customer experience was and asked me to take a survey at the conclusion of the call. All told, I had to wait for 55 seconds before I could enter anything into the IVR.

That’s when I discovered they were closed for the day.

Focus on What’s Important

While the postal service is a bit of an outlier, I see this same problem across many different industries. I called for a reason – to fix a problem. Instead of helping me accomplish that, they stop me to focus on their goals: Getting a survey complete.

I’m sure that’s a best practice to increase survey responses. We all struggle to get customers to answer our surveys, but this approach also increases your customer’s frustration. Your customer didn’t call you because they wanted to take a survey. She called because she’s trying to fix a problem. A problem she’s not solving while she is required to listen to how important her feedback is especially when you disable the numbers while your recording plays, as many do.

The appropriate action is clear: First, enable your customer to solve his problem. Then (and only then), ask for feedback. The survey is your problem, not your customer’s, and interrupting him is a bad way to create a great experience. Find a way to get your feedback that doesn’t degrade the overall experience.

And while you’re at it, make sure to respond quickly. I submitted an issue online, and I didn’t get my response from the postal service until two days later, as I was leaving the conference. Please make sure you’re answering more quickly than that!

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