Whether your business offers up hot dogs, office supplies or satellite communications, you need to have a sense of how satisfied your customers are, and how they think you can do a better job. At Intelsat General Corp., we get feedback every day telling us that most of our customers are happy most of the time, and we also work to respond as quickly as possible when they aren’t.
But to get a better overall sense of how we are doing, we recently hired a market research company, Market Connections, to do a methodical customer satisfaction survey for us. We’re very happy that over 80% of those surveyed rated IGC’s performance positively, and 90% are satisfied overall with IGC.
Of course, no business does a perfect job, and these numbers mean that 10% to 20% of our customers think we can be doing better. The responses to survey questions were very helpful in pointing out some areas where we need to improve. This feedback has been distributed to our engineering and sales staff so we can develop a plan to improve certain practices and procedures to provide better service.
The invitation to participate in the on-line survey went to 380 IGC customers. The survey was posted from June 15 to July 11. We had 49 completed surveys and a response rate of 13%.
The positive comments from those happy with our services are nice to hear for any business:
· “Excellent customer service support and technical responsiveness.”
· “I like working with the dedicated staff and the way they provide solutions.”
· “The SATCOM folks supporting the Navy are very responsive and really want to help the war fighter.”
Additionally, 83% of those responding would recommend IGC’s services to others, and nearly all (96%) would consider using IGC again in the future. While these are relatively good marks, there are areas for improvement.
The customers less than satisfied with our service tended to either have a pricing or a technical support issue. There are always customers that look for more competitive pricing, particularly in times of fiscal constraints. Several customers writing comments did acknowledge that the fiscal constraints are theirs and not necessarily related to our pricing structure.
Another area of concern is the provision of additional capacity at a time when certain parts of the world continue to be tight markets for satellite capacity. As we work on addressing these and other issues raised by customers, we look forward to next year’s survey in order to discover what difference our planned improvements will have on customer satisfaction.
Of course, there is always someone who goes out on a limb to request something they just cannot have. In response to a question about how to improve customer loyalty, one customer stated “Call their satellite WGS.” Good one!