How To Learn From Negative Customer Feedback

When you are running a call center, everything you do or every decision you take would revolve around the customer. The solutions you provide, tools such as the cloud contact center software you use- everything is done keeping in mind the customer’s needs.

Regardless of whether you are representing your company in customer care or whether you have been outsourced, the customer is of the prime importance. Keeping your customers happy would be the only way to ensure a steady growth in your business and a handsome revenue at the end of the annual year.

When it comes to contact center software solutions, it is not wise to chase new prospective customers and simply take the old ones for granted. If you think about it, it would actually be more profitable to tend to your old customers since they have already proved their loyalty to you.

Now, customer feedback is an integral aspect of your cloud calling solutions. How else are you supposed to find out where you stand out or what your customers think of you? When you deal with a customer, it is important to find out if they are satisfied with the kind of service you are providing. Now of course, everyone appreciates positive feedback. After all, we all like to hear good things being said about us.

But more often than not, we tend to ignore the negative feedback thinking it doesn’t make a difference. Well, that is exactly where you are going wrong. In reality, you should pay more attention to the negative feedback than the positive one since that is how you learn more about yourself.

Your cloud calling software should enable you to record all the negative feedback you obtain across all channels, and also analyse them. That way, you would be able to pinpoint the problem and actually work on it. The whole point of having a call center is to keep growing and expanding. That would only be possible if you are striving for the best and improving your services. Writhing in pain or complaining is not the way to react to negative feedback; there is nothing proactive about that! Here’s what you can do after negative feedback-

Getting Negative Feedback

I. Gathering competitive intelligence is necessary when it comes to your solutions. Yes of course, you would be monitoring your own reviews. But it would be more helpful if you were to monitor the reviews put up on public platforms by your competitors. If you search online, you would find plenty of review forums where you would find customers writing about the products of your competitors. Go through these. That way, you can make a comparison between their product and services and yours. You’ll thus have a clear idea of where you stand when compared to them.

II. You need to start benchmarking your products and services. When you get negative remarks, immediately measure that against the industry and its performance as a whole. Take a look at your competitors, find out how the market is doing, see how the industry panned out this year and get a clear idea of where you stand. This would give you an insight into the bigger picture. A well designed and modern call center cloud software allows you to do it with ease.

III. Since you have received negative feedback, it is important to rethink your strategies and your products. Maybe the products you have launched already are not working out or aren’t up to the mark. Or maybe, you are simply not marketing them well enough. Have you been making false promises or lagging behind in your solutions? Any of the above situations would call for negative feedback and that means you would need to revamp your whole infrastructure. Change the way you operate, recreate marketing strategies, and introduce some new products- these might just help!

IV. You also need to train the agents working at the cloud call center. Remember, they are the ones who directly communicate with your customers. Naturally, if something goes wrong as far as customer interactions are concerned, that could result in negative reviews. That’s why you need to train your agents beforehand. They should also have an optimistic attitude and handle negative review about themselves. They should be enthusiastic enough to correct themselves and work on where they are going wrong.

V. Now tracking your improvement is a must. For example, say you had come across some negative feedback a while back. You took it well and acted on it. You identified the problem and came up with clever strategies to avoid it in the future. Suffice to say, you aimed for improvement. Thus, wouldn’t it be important to track the improvement you’re making and see how well your new strategies work? Keeping a tab on the improvement of the report card of the cloud call center solutions that you provide would help you grow as a company.

Handling Negative Customer Feedback

I. The market is constantly changing today. If you don’t manage to stay up to date with the latest trends and technologies that are coming up, you would get left behind. That is why it is important to develop an insight into the market. The changing market trends would also mean that you need to constantly revamp your business to go with it. You see, your customer expectations are also changing overnight. Having a clear idea of the market and market trends would only allow you to meet these expectations better.

II. Even if you have received negative feedback, it is important to do damage control. You should also be able to sense if your customers are planning to leave. In that case, you could start working on strategies to prevent them from leaving. These are called save initiatives and would involve special treatment, handing out special offers et cetera. Basically, you should be ready to go the extra mile if you want your existing customers from leaving. That way, you could prevent your negative feedback from taking a toll on your business.

III. You need to accept that feedback and reviews are good things. You cannot be disheartened or give up if you read negative comments about your call center on cloud. You need to act on it proactively and take it in an optimistic manner. The negative reviews mean customers actually care and want you to work on your services. You should take this as a sign to work on your policies. There is nothing worse than a call center that is lazy and reluctant to improve on their past services.

IV. Handling negative feedback proactively means that you are ready for a change. If you have been sticking to the same call center cloud solutions for a while, or haven’t updated your software or haven’t been monitoring your agents, then that is definitely going to decrease the quality of your services. You are going to have to work on these and strive to improve them. Making the change or revamping the way your whole business functions tells the customers that you have actually listened to their complaints and have taken it into account.

V. Track your data when it comes to feedback. If one person has lodged a complaint about something they didn’t like, then that’s fine. It is his or her perspective and everyone is entitled to an opinion. One negative review doesn’t make much of a difference. However, if more and more people are complaining about it- like your holding time is too much, or your agents are rude and unhelpful, your solutions aren’t up to the mark and so on, then that’s cause for concern. If that happens, then like we said, you’re going to have to make some changes.

It’s Okay To Get Negative Feedback!

I. If you really think about it, negative feedback is the backbone to success. Simply hearing good things about yourself can make you vain and complacent. However, if you hear even one negative remark about your business, you take it personally and compel yourself to work twice as hard. Technically this is fast tracking to improvement. Yes, negative feedback certainly hurts, but you really need to look at the silver lining here and keep grinding on.

II. Have you missed your number this year? Then you need to accept the fact that it was your shortcomings that led to missing the mark. This is just another form of negative review, the one where you evaluate your own work. If you have missed your numbers, you would be forced to look back and actually think about where you went wrong and retrace your steps. That way, you can set better goals next time and work twice as hard to meet them.

III. Irrespective of what you are doing, you would always have coaches and other superiors who would review your performance. Even if you get negative feedback, it is difficult to see your own mistakes. That is why it is better to let your superiors handle it. Let them review your performance, pour through your numbers, analyse your customer interactions and identify your mistakes. It is up to you to ensure that you listen to your review with an open mind, because chances are, it is not going to be all hunky dory. Based on this review, you can start working on your performance.

IV. Listen to your agents. Do not blindly trust the reviews. Read them, record them and analyse them- but you should do your own homework too. Your agents are your employees and it is your duty to listen to what they have to say or give them a chance to explain. Every story has two sides to it. That’s why call recordings are encouraged. You would be able to go back to the calls and review them from scratch.

V. Ask yourself the right questions. What negative feedback have you received? How many people have complained about it? What do they have to say? Is it a minor issue that can be rectified immediately? Have you taken enough steps to rectify them and how well have they worked? Answering these questions would tell you how well you are handling negative feedback and if you need to do a better job.

The Case Study

When it comes to working at call centers, we all know the customer needs come first. But how often do you actually take it into account? We take our customers for granted and believe that they will stay with us no matter what. But remember, if you don’t manage to exceed your customers’ expectations, or if you manage to displease them somehow, you’re going to end up losing them. That is why we have come up with an elaborate case study that shows you exactly how a customer’s negative feedback can help you out.

The Auburn University Medical Clinic is located in Alabama and has more than 20000 students. Apart from that, the clinic provides health services to customers across the country.

Very soon, AUMC understood the importance of adjusting their business according to the clients’ expectations if they wanted to win their approval and grow in the process. On an average, the clinic sees about 39,000 patients each year. And without a doubt, the entire staff team at AUMC are dedicated to providing a wholesome and caring experience to all their patients. To do so, it was not only important to market their products and services but also take customer feedback into account.

The final outcome: the problem and the solution

When it comes to health care companies, you really need to pay close attention to your customers and what they are saying about you. Patients are extremely particular about the health care services providers they choose, and for good reason. Let’s take a look at the problem and the cloud based call center solutions provided by them-

• Earlier on, there were comment cards where the customers recorded their feedback. These cards were filled up the patients and then collected. Based on that, the executives of the clinic would go through the comments and decide on the solution.

• There was only one problem. The system was outdated and that was frustrating for customers. The staff would have to spend a lot of time going through these comment cards and processing them.

• Instead, the clinic adopted a new system where the patients could complete a survey on a tablet. Once they had been provided services, the customers would have to answer a few basic questions about their visit. This feedback was then recorded on the tablet itself.

• This reduced the need for the staff members to go through all the comment cards manually.

• The tablet would be recording all the feedback, both negative and positive, and then process them almost immediately.

• The processed feedback would then be available to the healthcare providers to go through and analyse.

• Based on this analysis, they would have an accurate idea of the quality of their service and if there is scope for improvement.

• It resulted in improved employee efficiency because this switch from comment cards to tablet surveys significantly reduced the time to process feedback.

• It also enhanced the experience of the patients since the clinic was now more focused on a better healthcare experience for their customers.

It is not just clinics, even most of the companies you see around you have a system for processing feedback. If you are outsourcing your customer care to a call center in the cloud, you would be able to record and analyse your customer feedback with ease. So what are you waiting for?


Case Study: Collecting Feedback Improves Staff and Patient Experience at AUMC