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In modern business, focusing on customer experience (CX) is no longer a nice-to-have, but rather a necessity for businesses of all sizes. However, defining a successful customer experience can be difficult because many touch points form the customer journey. By using online surveys, companies can gain quantitative information about the customer experience to actively monitor trends that develop over time. Based on customer feedback, organizations can identify areas for improvement, adjust their strategies accordingly, set better goals for their key performance indicators (KPIs), and strive to deliver the seamless experiences that today’s consumers expect.
Customer experience KPIs
Research shows that CX is now competing with traditional factors such as price and quality in influencing customer loyalty and advocacy. According to Forbes, 77% of consumers consider CX just as important as the main product or service itself. PWC reported that even beloved brands risk losing 32% of their customers after one negative interaction. In addition, poor CX burdens the company with costs. To address this, this article outlines five critical CX KPIs that can be systematically monitored, evaluated, and optimized to help address customer service problems and strengthen a company’s connections with its customer base.
1. % Customer satisfaction score (CSAT)
This KPI measures how customers rate particular interactions with a company, such as getting a response from customer care or processing a return. Users can score their satisfaction with the experience on a scale from “very dissatisfied” to “very satisfied” by responding to an automated questionnaire sent to them. Monitoring the ratings depends on a company’s objectives, but the general rule is that anything above 85% is excellent, and anything below 60% requires rapid attention.
Calculation: CSAT = (Number of Positive Responses / Total Number of Responses) x 100
2. # Net promoter score (NPS)
The NPS, considered the most famous CX KPI, reflects the willingness of consumers to recommend a product to friends and acquaintances. To calculate NPS, a company can conduct a survey of customers from one query: “What is the probability that you will recommend the product to your friends?” The answer is given on a 10-point scale, where 0 is “I will not recommend it in any case” and 10 is “I will definitely recommend.” The respondents can be divided into three groups depending on the scores obtained: promoters, passives, and detractors. The majority of companies consider a score above 80 as excellent, a score between 50 and 80 as very good, and a score below 50 as good.
Calculation: NPS = % Promoters – % Detractors.
3. % Word of Mouth Index (WoMI)
An extension of the NPS index, the creation of the WoMI was motivated by criticism towards the traditional NPS. Researchers believed that the NPS made the incorrect assumption that if a customer does not recommend a product or service, then they are automatically considered detractors. This led researchers to make adjustments to the KPI in order to better reflect reality. It tracks the recommendation, but from the opposite perspective: “What is the probability that you will discourage people from doing business with the company?” This can be rated on a scale of 0 to 10. Those who choose 9-10 on the scale of “dissuading” are categorized as “true detractors.” The threshold varies from one industry to another. It is better to have a lower score, as the target for most companies is less than 10%. To gain a comprehensive understanding of your company’s position among customers, we suggest employing both approaches to obtain a complete picture.
WoMI = (Number of Promoters – Number of Detractors) / Number of Respondents * 100.
4. Consumer Effort Score (CES)
The CES index, which was developed in 2010, is related to the idea that the more effort the product or service requires from customers, the less likely they are to stay with the company. As cited in an article, research by the Corporate Executive Board (CEB) shows that 94% of customers who have an effortless experience are likely to make repeat purchases. The KPI could be measured by the customer’s response to a statement like: “Thanks to the service/product of company X. I was able to easily cope with my problem.” with a rating scale of 1 to 7. Most companies typically receive CES scores ranging from 5 to 5.5. A score exceeding 6 is generally considered above average.
CES = (Sum of response scores) ÷ (Number of responses)
5. Customer churn rate
Simply put, the churn rate is the number of users who stop any interaction with the company. Depending on the industry, this could mean that customers deleted their account, did not re-buy, or simply decided to switch to a competitor. In its simplest form, customer churn can be calculated by comparing the number of customers lost to the total number of customers. By dividing one metric by another, one can get the customer churn rate as a percentage of the total base. The most common acceptable churn rate is 5-7% annually.
Enabling effective CX measurement
KPIs must be monitored and measured in order to improve CX. To do so effectively, a system that accurately collects data from all channels should be considered. This allows requests to be categorized and common issues to be identified. In-depth interviews with both loyal and dissatisfied customers should be conducted to understand the root cause of any problems, as some of which could be related to support services. Consistency in tracking and improving CX KPIs is the key to ensuring decisions and actions in customer service adapt to changing customer sentiment and meeting their needs.
Take your CX to the next level! Visit smartKPIs.com for a comprehensive, 360-degree view of CX KPIs.
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In today’s dynamic business landscape, enhancing employee performance is crucial for sustained success. To build high-performing teams, it’s important to establish the right framework and processes for performance measurement, including the selection and deployment of tools like key performance indicators (KPIs). But how can organizations successfully unlock employee potential through performance measurement?
Here is how renowned company Adobe transformed its employee performance strategies to obtain outstanding outcomes.
Case study: Adobe
Adobe’s transformation journey is a testament to the potential of strategic performance measurement and KPIs. Adobe has faced issues with its yearly performance evaluation process. These were:
- Employees were frustrated with annual performance reviews as they found the process cumbersome and bureaucratic.
- The process created barriers to teamwork since the experience of being rated and stack-ranked for compensation left many employees feeling undervalued.
- Adobe estimated that a total of 80,000 hours of its managers’ time was required each year to conduct all of the reviews, the equivalent of nearly 40 full-time employees working year-round.
Adobe realized that it should not wait until the end of year to share feedback. So, the company made a surprising change that improved employee engagement and transformed the company culture.
Employee-centric approach: Adobe’s departure from traditional performance reviews towards a more frequent and less formal “check-in” process demonstrates its commitment to an employee-centric approach. These regular discussions—done at least once a quarter—provide a platform for managers and employees to engage in meaningful conversations about expectations, growth, and development. This shift reflects Adobe’s recognition that empowering employees with continuous feedback and opportunities for improvement is more effective in driving performance excellence than the conventional annual review model.
Setting clear, measurable goals: The new strategy adopted by Adobe focused on providing its staff with specific, measurable goals. Employees could clearly understand what was expected of them and how their performance would be assessed because these goals were cascaded down from the organizational and departmental goals and aligned with each other. Companies that have aligned goals tend to outperform organizations that lack a direct connection between top company priorities and employees’ individual aims.
Real-time performance insights: Adobe enabled its managers to give employees real-time insight into their performance by integrating technology. Adobe launched a digitally-enabled check-in, providing all employees and managers with a web-based destination to document their goals, development, and growth. Individual goals are documented in a centralized place, reviewed regularly, and can be updated in real-time by managers and employees alike. All of this made it possible for timely feedback and course correction, ensuring employees stayed on track with their objectives and KPIs year-round.
The results of the transformation were spectacular and resonated with employees—employee attrition dropped by 30% while involuntary departures rose by 50%. This change allowed managers to give more timely and useful feedback while empowering employees to take responsibility for their own advancement. The employees thus felt engaged, valued, and aligned with the company’s goals.
What are the key takeaways from Adobe’s case? Performance measurement best practices should always include the following:
- Alignment with organizational goals: A strong performance measurement approach starts by matching team objectives and individual objectives with the organization’s overarching mission. Employee performance becomes a key factor in the organization’s success when they are aware of how their work supports corporate objectives.
- Keeping qualitative and quantitative metrics in balance: Effective performance measurement goes beyond simply counting numbers, as it needs a comprehensive understanding of an employee’s contributions and their influence on the expansion of the business. This is made possible by incorporating qualitative elements like engagement, collaboration, and innovation.
- Continuous feedback and growth: Many businesses are using continuous feedback loops instead of the traditional annual reviews. Periodic performance reviews and regular check-ins encourage ongoing conversations between managers and employees, facilitate growth discussions, and identify areas that need improvement.
In conclusion, the modern business landscape demands a strategic approach to unlocking employee potential. Performance measurement and KPIs are not just tools but pathways to aligning individual aspirations with organizational goals, combining qualitative and quantitative insights for a thorough understanding of employee contributions, and motivating continual improvement through timely feedback. By adopting best practices and an employee-centric approach, businesses may begin on a journey that empowers their staff, inspires innovation, and drives them to sustainable success in the dynamic global marketplace.
This article is written by Muhammad Ali Moustafa is a Business Management Consultant at The KPI Institute. He is a Certified KPI Professional (C-KPI) and Certified Performance Management Systems Audit Professional (C-PA). He has diverse professional experience in which he had the opportunity to work on advisory projects with different organizations, ranging from startups to multinationals.
Technology reshaped work, communication, collaboration, and task automation, driving enhanced productivity and increased internal efficiency, as indicated in a 2022 overview of digital transformation in business. One of the results of digitization is the creation of workplace super apps. A 2023 Infopulse article states that the term “super app” was defined in 2010 by BlackBerry founder Mike Lazaridis as “a closed ecosystem of many apps.” The concept has since gained more prominence through Chinese super products like WeChat and Alipay.
The evolution from single-purpose to multipurpose applications introduced a versatile solution—the aforementioned workplace super app—that seamlessly integrates essential tools and features for both office-based and frontline employees. As highlighted by AgilityPortal in a 2023 article, organizations adopt super apps to enhance workplace productivity.
Practical application of workplace super apps
As highlighted in a 2023 article by Kyanon Digital, a super app can offer creative solutions that can be customized to fit multiple industries’ needs. This is apparent in the case of how Aruba Networks, a leading technology solutions provider, actively pursues innovation and creativity to enhance operations. During its 2022 annual conference, the company showcased its forward-thinking approach by seamlessly uniting both in-person and remote attendees, including employees from Aruba Networks and external participants. This remarkable achievement was made possible through their partnership with CXApp, a renowned provider of event and workplace management solutions. CXApp offered a versatile, all-in-one event management platform—a super app. This customized, multipurpose app had a host of useful features (see Figure 1).
Figure 1. Top features of CXApp’s event management platform | Source: adapted from CXApp, 2022
The indoor navigation feature ensures that in-person participants would not lose their way within the extensive event space. For virtual attendees, there was a virtual innovation zone designed to replicate the immersive 3D experience of the in-person version.
Also, an exclusive activity stream was available solely to attendees, providing a platform for content sharing. Participants were encouraged to provide instant feedback via surveys for each session, contributing to the continuous improvement of the event’s offerings.
Moreover, the gamification feature aimed to boost interactivity by offering participants the opportunity to win prizes. All of these features meant that each attendee enjoyed a personalized agenda, ensuring that their experience was catered to their unique interests.
Measuring the performance of workplace super apps
How can leaders determine if implementing a super app truly yields positive outcomes? By evaluating its performance using specific metrics.
As emphasized by Brightscout, key performance indicators (KPIs) are commonly employed to measure how well web and mobile applications perform. Since a super app includes multiple apps within it, KPIs can also be used to clearly quantify how well a workplace super app is performing and contributing to business goals.
Monitoring KPIs helps evaluate the company’s performance before and after implementing the workplace super app. For instance, tracking employee engagement indicates their involvement in daily tasks, and enhancing it through live chat, gamification, and the automated meeting scheduling features of the super app can speed up response times. Moreover, when the workplace super app operates efficiently, planned downtimes are reduced. This surplus time enhances the likelihood of projects meeting their deadlines and reduces the time taken to address business partners’ needs due to synchronized project progress. Consequently, with increased employee efficiency and performance facilitated by improved engagement through the super app, revenue generation experiences a significant boost.
Managing workplace super app risks
While workplace super apps provide various advantages within the business realm, they also entail certain risks. Multiple articles (Baskaran, Supraja, et al., 2023; Ota, Fernando Kaway Carvalho, et al., 2023; Vinit, Choudhary, 2023) suggest that one of the most prominent risks involves data security and privacy issues. To address these issues, organizations can implement adequate security measures, such as code obfuscation, encryption, and runtime application self-protection (RASP), with the help of an expert, as suggested by Guardsquare.
Before choosing to implement a workplace super app, business leaders should carefully consider its benefits and potential drawbacks. For organizations already utilizing a workplace super app, employing KPIs is recommended to accurately evaluate its performance.
Acquire the necessary tools, skills, and knowledge to effectively measure performance using KPIs by enrolling in The KPI Institute’s C-KPIs Professional Certification program.
In an era when environmental concerns are at the forefront of global discussions, businesses are being called upon to integrate sustainability into their operations. Developed as an extension of the traditional Balanced Scorecard (BSC), the Sustainability Balanced Scorecard (SBSC) aims to provide businesses with a tool to align their environmental, social, and economic objectives, driving positive impact while ensuring long-term success.
The genesis of the SBSC
The concept of the BSC was first introduced by Robert Kaplan and David Norton in the early 1990s as a framework to measure business performance beyond financial metrics. The BSC aimed to provide a more holistic view of an organization’s health by incorporating four hierarchical perspectives: Financial, Customer, Internal Processes, and Learning & Growth.
A decade later, as sustainability became a critical global concern, scholars started looking into the possibility of integrating sustainability considerations into the BSC. They agreed on the potential of extending the focus of the well-established BSC to include measuring business performance through the lens of environmental stewardship, social responsibility, and ethics. Thus, the concept of the SBSC began to crystallize .
How to build an SBSC
When it comes to the best architecture for the SBSC, there have been conflicting discussions ever since the concept was introduced. Two major approaches took prominence: one is to add a fifth perspective to the traditional BSC that was dedicated to sustainability; the other is to integrate sustainability objectives and KPIs into the already existing perspectives.
A 2009 study showed that in the fifth perspective approach, sustainability KPIs tend to be overlooked by management in organizations with no established sustainability culture. That is why the four-perspective approach can be a safer choice, especially for organizations that are only starting to integrate sustainability in their measures.
In a 2021 article, Kaplan supported the four-perspective approach, introducing a suggested restructuring of three out of the four perspectives to make them more relevant to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) elements:
- From “Financial” to “Outcomes” to include environmental and societal objectives besides the financial aspect
- From “Customer” to “Stakeholder” to reflect the value of different members of the whole ecosystem
- From “Learning & Growth” to “Enablers” to encompass the various capabilities across all stakeholders in the ecosystem
Reaping these sustainability integration benefits can be a bit of a long shot, and further studies are needed to prove such benefits even exist. However, the only way to reap said benefits is to plant the seeds of sustainability integration. To help accomplish this, the SBSC can be a potent tool that allows organizations to measure, manage, and optimize their sustainability performance. As global challenges such as climate change, resource depletion, and social inequality loom larger, businesses must go beyond profits and consider their broader impact. The SBSC empowers organizations to embrace sustainability as a strategic imperative, paving the way for a more responsible, resilient, and prosperous future.
For more on utilizing the Balanced Scorecard, The KPI Institute has developed the Certified Balanced Scorecard Management System Professional to help organizations maximize the tools’ potential. And if you are interested in expanding your toolkit further, consider subscribing to smartkpis.com and gain access to the world’s largest database of documented KPIs, which includes a thorough collection of sustainability metrics.
Corporate sustainability (CS) represents a business approach that creates long-term shareholder value by embracing opportunities and managing risks derived from economic, environmental, and social developments, Yale University states. Organizations are increasingly realizing that their long-term success and profitability depend on measuring the financial impact of CS initiatives for several reasons: enhanced risk management, increased cost efficiency, greater investor demand, and improved brand reputation—ideas that were highlighted in a 2022 paper from the International Journal of Economics and Management.
The NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business developed the Return on Sustainable Investment (ROSI™) framework as a methodology used to evaluate the financial performance and returns generated from sustainability initiatives. It aims to measure the economic benefits derived from sustainability investments and assess the value created for the organization.
ROSI™ assists decision-making processes, resource allocation, and the prioritization of sustainability investments based on their potential financial returns. The framework also facilitates communication with stakeholders (i.e. investors, customers, and employees) by quantifying the financial value created through sustainable practices. The sustainability drivers of financial performance and competitive advantage based on ROSI™ methodology can be consulted below (see Figure 1).
Entities need to follow a clear set of steps to implement the ROSI™ methodology, per The NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business:
- Identify material sustainability practices.
- Determine the potential benefits that might drive financial and societal value from sustainability-focused practices.
- Quantify benefits derived from the sustainability practices.
- Derive a monetary value for the benefits.
The main advantage that ROSI™ brings is helping companies make a compelling business case for sustainability, driving both financial value and positive societal impact while advancing sustainability goals, as NYU Stern concludes in a report published in 2021.
HSBC Bank USA and the NYU Stern Center have launched the Food and Agriculture Sustainability Strategies Framework, based on ROSI™ to help food and agriculture companies make a business case for sustainable initiatives that deliver financial value and societal impact. The framework identifies twelve sustainable strategies and describes practical suggestions for calculating returns. It serves as a strategic tool for unlocking the advantages of sustainability and driving real change in the industry.
According to Forbes—and adapted to adhere to The KPI Institute’s KPI naming standards—% Return on investment (% ROI) is a KPI that measures the efficiency or profitability of an investment or compares the efficiency of several different investments. This metric is also used to measure and evaluate the financial impact of organizational sustainability initiatives, making it easier to understand the value proposition of certain environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria used in socially responsible investing. A positive % ROI score indicates a profitable outcome, as the gains generated from the investment exceed the costs incurred (see Figure 2).
An article from Brightest presented findings based on data gathered between 2020 – 2023 from five top companies that measure the ROI of sustainability. It stated that companies like HP Inc. ($3.5B), Unilever ($1.2B), McKesson ($227M), Nike ($50M), Anheuser-Busch ($7.5M), and Medtronic ($2.2M) earned extensive profit from internal cost savings actions based on sustainability criteria like energy efficiency or waste reducing. By demonstrating the financial value of sustainable practices, % ROI enhances the business case for social investment and encourages stronger ESG administration, balancing monetary performance with social and environmental impact.
ROSI™ and % ROI are valuable tools for measuring the financial impact of sustainability initiatives. ROSI™ goes beyond traditional metrics, helping companies understand the value of sustainability strategies. Meanwhile, % ROI quantifies the fiscal returns generated, enabling data-driven decision-making. Together, they support making informed choices, practicing accountability, and leaving behind a positive environmental and societal impact while delivering long-term financial value.