Customer satisfaction is a necessity for success for every organization. Without customer satisfaction, an organization will either fail, or be forced to resort to competing exclusively on price. This often leads to a decline in profitability and an increased risk of failure. Altreya has been engaged by a number of clients to assess customer satisfaction on an annual basis. The data collected and analyzed has been transformed into actionable information, which has allowed our clients to carefully develop new strategies to improve customer satisfaction. As a result, revenues have improved and costs have been reduced. The case study below illustrates Altreya’s success with this type of engagement.
A national service firm offers complete laundering, servicing, delivery and distribution systems. to the healthcare industry This $250 million division of a $600 million firm experienced a significant increase in customer defections over a two-year period, and the cost of losing these customers escalated to $34 million at the end of this period. The firm strives to be the premier provider of textile rental and laundering services in the healthcare industry. In order to achieve its aggressive objective, the firm sought first to stem the losses from contract cancellations by reducing customer defections to zero.
While senior management was being told that price was the primary driver of contract cancellations, no data existed to support the argument that prices needed to be lowered.
Altreya custom designed and implemented two separate customer assessment instruments. The first instrument was designed to identify and understand the key drivers of customer satisfaction. This instrument was fielded among our client’s former customers. Results from the first survey were used to design the second survey instrument.
The second instrument was designed to assess our client’s performance vs. their customers’ expectations. This instrument was fielded among nearly 2,000 current customers.
Our principals tabulated and analyzed the survey results and identified the priority areas requiring improvement.
Early in 2000, our client implemented initiatives that addressed the top three priority areas raised by former and current customers. Their improvement efforts yielded impressive results:
- By the end of 2000, customer defections had been reduced by 50%, at a value of $15 million.
- With a formal customer retention program now in place, our client expects to reduce defections by an additional 50% in 2001.
- External sales and marketing
- Strategic and operational planning
- Strategic alliance/partnership planning
- Operational/productivity assessment
- Competitive intelligence assessment
- Customer satisfaction assessment
- Employee satisfaction assessment
- Sales force optimization
- Go-to-market planning
- IP development and commercialization