The Price of Not Listening
Screenshot, Source: AskTOG
Bruce Tognazzini recommends in his articel that companies should establish direct feedback from their customers all the way back to their development teams.
The web offers the perfect way for companies to gather feedback from the public. If carefully designed, a feedback system can short-circuit emerging disasters and soothe the ruffled feathers of the customers. It can accomplish this at sharply reduced costs vs. conventional feedback mechanisms such as phone or snail mail.
- Give users an open and obvious way to offer complaints/suggestions.
Keep the form short: Just ensure you have their name and email address. You don't need their snail mail address and the name of their 2nd spouse's 3rd dog before allowing them to start writing.
- Give them some room to write. The little postage-stamp-sized input box is just simply insulting. They are already unhappy; you don't need to pour gasoline on the fire.
- Train human readers in Customer Service how to differentiate between suggestions and requests for help and how to respond appropriately.
- Give people responses that mirror the user's complaint, so they know they've been heard.
- Then, tell them what you're going to do about it, explicitly. This may be a form reply, but state you are passing it on to the [insert project/product name] development team, not that it will be "routed to areas within the corporation" or some other meaningless phrases.
- Finally, actually do pass the complaints/suggestions on to the development team. They want to see them!
AskTOG: "The High Price of Not Listening"