• September 12, 2014
  • By Leonard Klie, Editor, CRM magazine and SmartCustomerService.com

TeamSupport Introduces Customer Distress Index

TeamSupport has released a Customer Distress Index (CDI) reporting feature that allows customer support teams to predict customers' dissatisfaction before it escalates.

With TeamSupport's new CDI, each customer is assigned a number. The higher the number, the greater potential for a customer to be distressed. An algorithm based on five variables calculates each customer's unique CDI number.

Robert Johnson, CEO of TeamSupport, says the product offers "a mathematical computation" that looks at how customers interact with a business and how that compares across the entire customer base.

"It's a way to identify customers who may need a little extra TLC or attention," Johnson says. "It's another way to help understand your customers and their relationships with you, to make sure you're not missing anything in the service of that customer."

Customer service teams will benefit from a sophisticated reporting system that can actually calculate when a customer might be getting frustrated and allow them to foresee potential issues before they become a large problem, he adds.

The characteristics considered in the calculation include the following:

  • Total tickets created during the lifetime of the customer's account, measuring the total volume of interactions that a customer has had with a support team. A high number here could indicate a customer who has needed a lot of help and hand-holding as compared to other customers.
  • Tickets created in the last 30 days, measuring how active a customer has been recently. This may be an early indicator of problems with a particular customer.
  • Tickets currently open, measuring backlog. A high number here could indicate a customer who is frustrated with a lack of follow-up and response from a support team.
  • Average time open, measuring how stale tickets are by looking at the amount of time they have been open and not addressed. There is a direct correlation between how long a ticket has been open and the frustration level of customers.
  • Average time to close, measuring whether it has taken longer, on average, to address a customer's tickets. This could indicate frustration because of the lack of timeliness in resolving issues.

A CDI Trend Indicator also lets help desk teams know if things are going in the right direction, aggregating data from the past seven days. "It's not just a static number," Johnson says.

Johnson points out that the CDI is really geared toward companies that operate in the business-to-business space because it looks at all the interactions one company has with another company rather that with individuals. "It looks at interactions with multiple people within the same company," he says.

And while the number is not an exact science, Johnson says the data is invaluable.

"In the worst case, the system identifies a customer and you give him some extra attention when he might not really need it," he quips. "Without it, the worst case would be to have a customer with issues and you don't know it."

This is a follow-up to the reporting and analytics capabilities TeamSupport added to its help desk software in April.

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