Customer Satisfaction - About 'Periodics'

This post follows on from my ‘Customer Satisfaction – How do you measure up’ posts, which you can read about here and here.

This post is going to look at some questions you might use for a periodic survey, and discuss when such customer satisfaction surveys should be taken.

Let’s look at some sample questions, which are of course linked to what it is you are trying to discover.

For my example, I’m trying to find out something about attitudes to the Helpdesk/Service Desk, attitudes to downtime and availability, quality of the jobs we do, and to find out if the service we offer is improving or not. 

I stated in the earlier posts that you should ask the questions from a positive stance, so my questions would be:

  1. I am satisfied that the IT services I need to do my job are available when I need them.
  2. When the service desk reports a problem as resolved, it usually is resolved.
  3. The quality of IT service I obtained has improved over the past 3 months.
  4. Generally, I am satisfied with the IT service I obtain.

Of course there are other things that might be tested – for example, the quality of experience when callers contact the Service Desk. However, we do have the event-based surveys to tell us about poor experiences users might have here.

If I was using such a periodic survey, I’d perform the survey no more than once every three months. If I was embarking on a programme of IT service improvements (such as introducing IT Service Management with ITIL) then I’d consider such a survey to be essential before such changes were made. I would then re-survey after 3 months to see if there had been an improvement in customer perception.

One objection made frequently to me at the start of an ITSM programme is ‘I don’t want a survey right now as the results will be embarrassingly poor – I want to wait until we’ve made improvements’. I strongly disagree with this: users have their opinions regardless of whether you survey them or not. Taking a survey at the start may be painful, but is surely worthwhile.

I’ll post next week about interpreting the results from your surveys.

Otherwise, have a great (sunny!) weekend.

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