Benchmarking NPS – some practical solutions

With any company new to measuring their Net Promoter Score (NPS) one of the first questions often concerns how the score compares with other companies. The challenge is to find a company where benchmarking NPS scores is appropriate. Are they directly comparable and do you know the reliability of the publicised NPS score? Has their NPS data been independently audited?

So what are the possible options open to companies? We would suggest that consideration is given to the following:

1. NPS should be used as a measure of progress that your company is making in improving your customers’ experience. Understanding what is driving an NPS score, and therefore what improvements you need to implement to improve that NPS figure is more important than benchmarking against a single score. After all your greatest influence is on your own company’s performance for its customers. Understanding drivers can be as simple as reviewing verbatim provided by ‘Detractors’. Decreasing the percentage of detractors is an effective approach to increasing your NPS score.

2. If competition comparison is a crucial issue, consideration should be given to other established measures such as Customer Value Management which directly compares the perceived value for money provided by your company and your competitors.

3. Benchmarking NPS across your own business. This could be between Divisions / Business Units, or may be possible across functions. Here there can be consistency concerning both data collection and reporting, and vitally there will be access to the all important NPS driver data. The sharing of best practice to not only measurement, but vitally the analysis of the insight and the implementation of corrective actions can become a standard approach across the business.

4. Discuss NPS with providers in your joint customers Value / Supply chain. Some of these may be within your own organisation, and others will be with external companies. Taking this shared partnership approach will help not only form a closer relationship between companies it vitally helps all parties have a better understanding of the end customers’ experience, and helps identify where in the value chain improvements can be made.

5. The total journey that your customers experience. Companies often talk about utilising a Customer Journey Map to help them understand their customers better, but very few consider the complete customer journey that may cross several different organisations. This can result in the colliding of customer journeys which ultimately can only lead to a poor end customer experience and the devaluing of the relationship between all parties.

Overall remember that NPS is focussed on establishing the likelihood of your customers recommending you as a supplier, it does not ask for a comparison by the customer between companies, so therefore benchmarking your NPS score may not add value to your customer strategy, which after all any NPS programme has to be linked to in order to be successful.

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