The pros and cons of making your number public, part 1
The Net Promoter® System has been adopted by thousands of companies worldwide. One of the most frequently asked questions by businesses that have implemented Net Promoter is, “Should we publish our score?” There are several factors that need to be taken into account before a decision can be reached. In this article, we will cover the advantages and, in part 2, we will address the potential risks.
When a company contemplates disclosing its NPS score, there are essentially three distinct groups to consider:
1) Company employees
2) Interested parties, such as the Board of Directors, investors, etc.
3) Everyone else
In our view, the answer regarding the first group is an emphatic “yes.” For any Net Promoter program to be successful it requires that at the very least you share high-level details on the Net Promoter Score. This could include trending information, performance against goals, and the action plan to respond to customer feedback. Keeping team members up to date on customer performance trends is a great way to inspire and motivate employees to deliver better customer experiences. And, by seeing how their efforts are affecting customer satisfaction and retention, employees become more aware of their attitudes and behaviors, which reflects positively on the company’s commitment to service excellence.
How much detail is shared will depend on the audience and decisions regarding transparency. Some of our clients have a history of disclosing everything with all employees, while others only reveal extensive detail to those in the best position to affect change. Either way, every employee should be aware of changes in overall customer sentiment and be educated about their role in improving it.
I think most business leaders would agree that customer satisfaction data should also be shared with the Board of Directors and investors. The one caveat being that, in public companies, disclosing such data to all investors is tantamount to making it available to everyone else – which leads us to the third group.
Making your NPS score public, say by posting it on your website, sharing it in a newsletter or issuing a press release, has several advantages:
− Revealing your NPS score can help reinforce your company’s commitment to the customer and service excellence. Of course, the actions taken by the company and employees need to validate that commitment but sharing your score can serve as a competitive advantage – helping your company stand apart from the competition. One need look no further than Rackspace for a great example of establishing credibility as a strong service-centric company: www.rackspace.com/whyrackspace/support/nps/
− Disclosing your company’s score, along with a credible and compelling brand promise that centers around customer excellence, will also resonate with existing and prospective customers. Current customers, as well as those considering your company’s products or services, will be comforted knowing your company not only “talks the talk” but also “walks the walk.”
− Finally, prospective employees may also take notice. Not surprisingly, people prefer to work for companies that make customer service a high priority. With research showing a strong connection between happy customers and happy employees, advertising your company’s customer-focused culture can also help recruit top talent to your organization.
As you can see there are quite a few compelling reasons to announce your Net Promoter Score to the world. However, not so fast. In Should You Publish Your Net Promoter Score, Part 2, we will offer our thoughts on the potential pitfalls of making your score available for all to see.