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Critical Complaint Handling KPIs for Driving Good Outcomes

Critical Complaint Handling KPIs for Driving Good Outcomes


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Critical Complaint Handling KPIs for Driving Good Outcomes

15 Dec 2022

Eric Brown
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When it comes to complaints, we seem to be inundated with key performance indicators (KPIs). Call times, complaint volumes, resolutions achieved—the list is seemingly endless. But, just how valuable are these KPIs? In particular, in terms of the all-important issue of good outcomes, which complaint KPIs should you be focusing on to help drive real improvements, demonstrating and measuring good outcomes in the process?

While common metrics such as complaint volumes, number of complaints referred to the ombudsman and time to closure certainly have their uses, to deliver optimum visibility of outcomes, KPIs need to go beyond this, providing real insight into the end-to-end customer complaint journey.

Customer Surveys Can Fall Short

Customer surveys are a potential generator of outcome KPIs, often providing vital first-hand feedback into how complaints are handled. However, if it’s a focus on outcomes you’re looking for, surveys can be problematic, with many customers unable to distinguish between the ultimate outcome and the complaint handling journey as a whole. This can lead to flawed survey results and inaccurate outcome KPIs.

End-to-end KPIs Throughout the Customer Complaint Journey

It really is too late to wait until the customer complaint journey is over to assess how things went. It’s here that case progression metrics are key. For example, KPIs that focus on keeping customers up-to-date at every stage of the complaint process, supported by a good complaint management system, help to achieve not only good outcomes but customer service excellence too. KPIs that follow the end-to-end customer journey are best practice, making it easier to understand not only where things go wrong, but why, furnishing your organization with visibility across the entire customer experience.

Also, ending KPIs with the closure of complaints can miss crucial information. In fact, the tracking of reopened complaints is a useful KPI, helping your business to better understand that a closed complaint doesn’t always equate to a good outcome. Additionally, reporting on customer interactions post resolution serves to deliver a more comprehensive view of the customer. For example:

  • Does the customer change how they interact with the business post-complaint?

  • How does this compare to customers who experienced similar or varying outcomes?

When it comes to wider conversations about the value of complaints to the business as a whole, such KPIs can serve to show just how beneficial and impactful a well-handled complaint can be to the entire organization.

Qualitative and Quantitative KPIs

While we all recognize that quantitative KPIs have an important role to play, particularly with providing an at-a-glance snapshot for key decision-makers, it’s crucial that qualitative measures are included too, reporting on the quality of outcomes and the customer experience. Bringing KPIs to life through real customer stories and case studies ensures the business understands the impact of complaints on customers. In somewhat of a chicken-and-egg situation, for your organization to know if outcomes are right and good, it’s vital to first understand the initial impact of the complaint. A good outcome for one customer might not be a good outcome for another.

Perhaps most important of all, is the need to continuously assess just which KPIs you’re monitoring and why. It’s all too easy to report for reporting’s sake, with KPI overload a common malady that plagues many businesses. Feedback on KPIs helps to refine which are valuable, relevant and important to the business, particularly when it comes to outcomes. Closing the loop and feeding back as to what measures your business is taking in response to negative KPIs, as well as rewards and praise for positive KPIs, ensures reports add real value, not just another tick in the administrative box.

To secure optimum customer outcomes, a combination of quantitative and qualitative KPIs at every stage of the customer complaint journey is crucial, delivering the insight into end-to-end customer complaint journeys that’s needed. To do this requires the ability to capture and report back on data from every customer interaction, something that the right complaint management system is designed to do. It’s with this insightful and in-context information that KPIs can become more meaningful, helping to demonstrate and measure good outcomes whilst driving tangible, valuable business-wide improvements to how complaints are managed.

For more information on how Aptean Respond can furnish your business with the insight and information to deliver more valuable KPIs, contact us today.

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