Using NPS (Net Promoter Score) as a tool to improve service

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David Reinerstedt

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Just like many other businesses, Toyota Material Handling Norway’s service team has done their best to implement and measure a lot of KPIs. They now focus solely on customer satisfaction and more specifically Net Promoter Score (NPS) as their only service KPI.


Rune Johansen, Service Manager at Toyota Material Handling Norway“From the moment I started working at Toyota, I decided to focus on NPS, because I could see that we were not talking enough about it with our technicians. So far, I’m satisfied with the progress we made throughout our journey, continuously improving our score,” says Lars Rune Johansen, Service Manager at Toyota Material Handling Norway. To successfully implement the Net Promoter Score (NPS) as a KPI, it’s important to involve all stakeholders of the service organisation, in this case all service managers throughout the country. It’s the only way to find out how the organisation is doing in service on a local level and how employees are communicating with customers. It’s therefore also the only way to improve the NPS KPI.

Using customer feedback to improve service

When implementing NPS as the only KPI, isn’t there a risk in trying to chase a good NPS score instead of genuinely increasing the way of working and improving customer satisfaction?
“We are mostly focused on the customer feedback provided by the NPS survey. By using our web portal as a tool to know which customers to contact, and by doing that as soon as possible, we try to improve our service for them. We are aware of the fact that a lot of customers are expecting us to call them back to discuss their feedback, which is why we make a point of it to call within the same or on the next day,” says Lars Rune Johansen.
It’s about taking their feedback seriously, and taking action on it, by looking into all opportunities for improvement.


NPS as part of the daily routine in service

Toyota Material Handling Norway’s ambition is to completely make NPS a standard part of their employees’ working day; it can’t become just an additional task that can only be completed when there’s some extra time. Only by continually working with NPS, will employees become efficient in it: because no one becomes good at something they rarely do. It’s essential for the service managers to specialise in giving feedback to the customer, and to make this part of their natural routine.
“The reason behind why we’re doing this is because talking to customers and listening to their feedback is the best way to improve service for them. It provides us with more knowledge about what to add to our service offer, and what we still need to improve.”
In the future, Toyota Material Handling Norway is also planning to contact the customers who have not replied to the NPS survey and get to know their feedback. Currently, they are asking the technicians of those customers to talk to them to know how they are doing.

NPS to continuously improve service

Toyota Material Handling Norway has now been working with the Net Promoter Score (NPS) for three years and has managed to improve their score from 47 to 65.
“If I see an NPS score that is insufficient, I make a point of it to talk to the team leader or technician to determine what we can do about this. In case of any negative customer feedback, it’s always essential to talk to the customer. This way, we can show them that we are keen on improving our service and making sure they are satisfied. I look forward to communicating more with customers in the future and performing even better by applying their feedback, and learning how to handle complicated cases."

I make a point of it to familiarise everyone in the organisation with NPS and to make sure they know how it works, how they can improve the score, and how they can talk about it with other service managers and technicians.


Service Net Promoter Score

4 key learnings to successfully applying NPS

Toyota Material Handling Norway has identified some key learnings to successfully implement NPS:

  1. After starting up the project, the focus should remain on getting quality feedback and communication with the customer, which are key to good results.
  2. Lean on the right resources to do this kind of work, such as using the normal customer contact structure to manage complaints.
  3. Create an easy overview of the survey feedback in reports and communication to stimulate improvements.
  4. Work closely with other teams such as sales and short-term rental, and have surveys executed simultaneously, with the goal of having a full NPS overview for your entire organisation. This is a strong tool which can support the negotiation of crucial deals.

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