Feedback Done Right

     Providers and employers primarily think of feedback as getting information from customers and employees. We have shown that just asking for feedback does not make it right and that most of what is called feedback today is really just a one-way street: Providers and employers want “feedback,” when they want, how they want and what they want.

     Feedback that is just a like or a dislike, a happy or sad face, or a will or will not recommend, provides limited and often misleading information. That is not good for the seller or the buyer.

     Customers and employees first think of feedback as complaints and their biggest complaint about complaints is that they cannot get anyone to listen to them. But that is not always the case.

     A subscriber emailed us that they made a purchase from the Walmart Marketplace just after Christmas largely because the ad promised two-day delivery. The next day the subscriber was looking for the received an email that the product had shipped and that the estimated delivery date was another three days later.

     The seller, Tate Lane, quickly responded to a Contact Us message: We are sorry for the shipping problem. We have overnighted a new unit to you so that the recipient will have it within two days of ordering.

     That is a second to none example of how to deal with a dissatisfied customer. I understand that Tate Lane now confirms that special offers are deleted from advertising as scheduled.

     Other than using email to communicate, Tate Lane’s response was entirely manual. Here is how our TConnect application handles dissatisfied customers:

  • Logs feedback in both customer and provider dashboards
  • Immediately emails customer acknowledging feedback and advises when to expect a response
  • Categorizes feedback as negative and starts preset clock on provider’s dashboard
  • Alerts designated provider staff to evaluate feedback and request additional information if necessary
  • The response template includes
    • Findings
    • Response to submitter
    • Lesson(s) learned
    • Follow ups
  • Monitors customer response
    • If customer is not satisfied
      • Incident categorized for special review
    • If customer is satisfied
      • Incident data included in reports
      • Incident closed

     Feedback, when done right, makes everything better for all parties.