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The TM Forum recently found that service providers who improve their net promoter score (NPS) were rewarded with a reduction in customer churn. Basic math tells us that one plus one does indeed equal two – happier customers and increased retention gives a boost to the bottom line. Hardly surprising, perhaps. But, how exactly do you measure the results and the return on investment (ROI) of projects that are designed to improve customer experience, satisfaction and retention?

Although calculating ROI is never straightforward, it’s a critical measurement for service providers to understand the value of their customer engagement strategies. But just making customer experience changes isn’t enough, you need a way to monitor your initiatives and gauge their success. This is where metrics come into play.

Since call spikes to customer care can be revenue draining, service providers need to track metrics around call volumes, call types, average handling times and their associated costs. When the reasons for an increase in calls are understood, proactive measures can be taken to minimize customer dissatisfaction, reduce costs and ultimately protect revenue. Take, for example, a North American Tier-1 service provider that was challenged by poor customer experience, eroding NPS and a high volume of calls to care. By enhancing the design of their bill, they were able to deliver personalized, easy-to-understand invoices, reducing calls to care by 10% and cutting bill-related calls, resulting in a $50 million cost savings in the first year!  Similarly, another North American Tier-1 service provider saw a 56% decline in incoming customer calls, following an innovative bill redesign.

Slashing calls to care is just one aspect… there’s more

It’s easy to see that reducing calls to customer care has an almost immediate financial impact. But there are other commercial benefits to improving the customer experience. While less measurable, service providers – especially in highly saturated markets – simply can’t afford to miss an opportunity to impress their customers.

Consumers are now used to customer-focused brands such as Uber or Amazon. Their expectations are changing – especially millennials who are quick to walk away when they are not happy. When we flip the coin, the other side reveals that customers are willing to pay for better customer experiences. In fact, some customers will reward their service provider with higher spending, as two independent surveys from PricewaterhouseCoopers and Capgemini have found.

To take advantage of this opportunity, it’s time to break free from the old-fashioned, communications and media industry mind-set of simply delivering technology services. It’s time to know what your customers really want and deliver it in the most engaging and customer-centric way possible.

Want to know more on how to improve customer experience and boost revenue? Look out for part two of this blog series: ‘Measuring satisfaction at customer journey milestones’, where we will share some simple steps that service providers can take to ensure customer expectations are not only consistently met, but exceeded.