The Market Connections 2016 Federal Government Contractor Study revealed that only half (50%) of government contractors rate themselves highly on government customer relationship management. For those who have less than 50% win rates, the number is even lower at 36%. Despite these low self-ratings, contractors agree that customer satisfaction is critical to winning business. How can contractors improve their customer relationships?
One of the most effective tactics for improving government customer relationship management is implementing a customer satisfaction program. In fact, using a third party research firm to conduct customer satisfaction research is not only an essential part of building customer trust and loyalty, it helps identify issues and provide a way for contractors to proactively manage the relationship.
In addition, a customer satisfaction research program helps you understand your strengths and weaknesses, so you can focus improvements on specific areas that will have the most measurable impact on customer loyalty, retention and growth. This understanding also helps improve customer relationships.
There are three key steps to building a customer satisfaction program:
- Use an independent third party research firm. Getting unbiased feedback is important to truly uncover issues. An experienced provider will gather client feedback about performance, quality, your staff and willingness to recommend you and do business again.
- Let your customers know you are doing this, and are committed to following up on the results. This will help boost the response rate because customers are more likely to take the survey if they hear about it from you, and more likely to speak candidly to a neutral third party.
- Share the high-level results with your employees and clients. Your employees will be more engaged with addressing any issues if you share the results with them, and your customers will appreciate an open and transparent discussion of the results. It is also important to make sure you include steps you will take to address anything that came up in the research. This reinforces your dedication to ensuring clients’ satisfaction.
The responses will not only help you gauge how well you have performed with your customers, they will help you better understand your customers’ needs so you can tailor your services to meet those expectations.
Learn more about how government contractors rate their performance; download the overview of results at www.marketconnectionsinc.com/GovConStudy2016.