Service matters: The link between NPS and revenue

It’s no secret that network operators have long struggled with customer care, both in the consumer and business sectors. Over the years, myriad, siloed, back-end systems have been stitched together creating an experience with lots of seams, resulting in too many customer touch points, or (equally bad) too few.

To mix metaphors, Colt has recognised this elephant in the room and decided to take it by the horns (it’s a bull elephant), embarking on a huge transformation initiative aimed at revolutionising the customer experience. The Customer Experience Transformation Initiative is ambitious. It’s a programme that aims to make Colt ‘the most customer oriented business in its industry’, with an NPS target of 60 by 2020.

That’s a tall order considering some of Colt’s peers still record very low, or even negative NPS scores, and it’s also important to remember that NPS is just one metric in an arsenal for measuring customer experience, loyalty and perception. But it’s an important metric. 71% of Prospects tell us Customer Experience is the biggest buying factor, 58% of our existing customers tell is that offering exceptional service is the most important factor in them staying with us.

Service matters. So Colt looked at what drives different aspects of NPS and then broke NPS down into its constituent parts and built a programme of work to determine which levers it needed to pull to make a difference to each of those components.  We know it makes sense to improve our Customer Experience, now we know where it makes most sense and why.

The intention is that improved digitisation of the customer experience will simultaneously improve NPS and reduce internal costs, by: reducing the internal sales burden; reducing quote, order and delivery time; improving data accuracy; reducing reworks; reducing customer queries; reducing service delivery workload; reducing internal burden on billing staff; reducing inbound calls (by ~30%); eliminating incident tickets and critically providing transparency to our customers on what’s going on with their service at all times. It’s their service, in a couple of clicks our customers will have exactly the same picture as us.

Our customers want it, it drives efficiency and improved NPS but digital is only part of the story, we also need to step up and drive loyalty by creating a differentiated experience that connects with customers when it really matters to them.  Early signs are good, since the programme launched at the start of the year, with Colt’s NPS already increasing 10 points between Q4 2015 and Q2 2016.

But Colt has also achieved something very few companies have – it’s proven a financial link to NPS – establishing that one NPS point is equivalent to a share of wallet increase and churn reduction amounting to €8.6m in revenue over three years. So in the first six months of this multi-year project, Colt has already recorded a potential €80m uplift in revenue.  We prioritise improvements based on what matters to our customers and this drives up our NPS which allows us to invest in doing more good stuff.

Listening to our customers, understanding what’s important to them and making improvements based on that is well established at Colt and elsewhere, but being able to link that to financial performance was largely a mystery until now. Now we are breaking new ground, by understanding what great service means to our customers and creating an implementation project based around this.

Colt Online goes some way to delivering on this vision, with the simple aim of making it really easy for you to do business with Colt. Take a look >>

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