Magazine article CRM Magazine

Are You Correctly Measuring Customer Satisfaction?

Magazine article CRM Magazine

Are You Correctly Measuring Customer Satisfaction?

Article excerpt

EVERY ONCE in a while, a bad customer service story goes viral, forcing CRM professionals to take a closer look at how they support customers. The Comcast example that News Editor Leonard Klie mentions in his cover story, "Should CSRs Be Paid for Performance?" (page 24), is one of those cringe-worthy examples.

Unfortunately, they're more common than we'd like to think. Actually, it reminds me of a bad customer experience I had with AAA.

On a winter evening after a long day at work a couple of years ago, my car wouldn't start. The battery had died. So I called AAA to request a tow-truck driver. After stating all the necessary details, the agent informed me that a driver should arrive within 30 minutes. No big deal. I then called my wife to tell her what happened and that I'd be a little late for dinner.

Well, things didn't exactly go as planned. After an hour and 20 minutes, the tow-truck driver finally arrived.

Aside from his lateness (which he apologized for), I was pleased with his service. He was friendly, courteous, professional, and helpful. And, before long, he had my car humming. That's when things took a turn for the worse.

Before I could drive off, the same AAA agent who had been handling my case called me back and asked if I was "totally satisfied" with AAA's service. I said, "I'm satisfied, but not totally satisfied," because the driver showed up so late. The agent argued that it's acceptable/common for a tow-truck driver to arrive an hour after the initial call.

Why wasn't this explained to me on the first call? Had I known this, I might have made other arrangements to get home, I thought. Instead of vocalizing this, I simply repeated my point that I was satisfied, but not "totally satisfied," which seems fair, considering the driver was so late.

This wasn't good enough for the operator. He seemed frustrated with my response and argued the same exact point. …

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