Voice Of The Customer

Voice Of The Customer

“A point of view can be a dangerous luxury when substituted for insight and understanding.” – Marshall McLuhan

We help our clients understand their customers’ requirements, preferences and aspirations for service, through the structured collection and analysis of customer data.

In 2013, McIntosh documented the impact of transaction times on issue resolution and customer loyalty, and a customer’s willingness to recommend a firm. Over 5,000 interactions were observed across multiple industries and over 2,000 surveys were completed. The results were conclusive.

  • Customer loyalty exhibited an inverse relationship to transaction time
  • Resolution rates positively correlated to loyalty and to lower transaction times

For more information on McIntosh’s customer insight research, click here to gain access to our white paper The Relationship Between Handle Time, First Call Resolution, and Customer Loyalty.


Our experience within this sector:

Customer Requirements and Preferences for Service

Measuring Customer Engagement and Loyalty

Actionable Customer Analytics


Customer Service Requirements

Voice of the customer vs. tone of voice.

Read More


Measuring Customer Loyalty

Ongoing measurements of satisfaction and loyalty.

Read More


Actionable Analytics

Organizing data, transforming information into insights.

Read More

Voice of the Customer Experience:

  • On every operational assessment conducted by McIntosh, our consultants observe and evaluate operational and support processes and tools, but no activity is more important than listening to customer calls and then surveying those customers on the call experience. While clients can generally articulate a set of customer experience objectives, they frequently have developed those objectives based on outdated information, poorly designed research, inadequate sample sizes, anecdotal information, or organizational bias. Only by listening to the voice of the customer as they request support and then rate the effectiveness of that support experience, can we fully understand the customer’s requirements, preferences, and aspirations for service. In all our assessments, the voice of the customer plays a critical role in the formulation of recommendations and the development of solutions.
  • For a major healthcare provider, McIntosh completed monitoring correlating survey data to document patient expectations and requirements for service. The data became the basis for an innovative program and resulted in NPS becoming a critical agent through enterprise level metric.
  • For firms in the transportation, hospitality, airline, financial services, media/cable, technology, manufacturing, public sector, and telecommunications industries, McIntosh has completed numerous projects leveraging one of two methodologies to generate customer insights and define a customer experience strategy:
    • Kano survey process
    • Correlated monitors and surveys
  • For firms across diverse industries, McIntosh has leveraged customer insight data to reengineer the quality monitoring process, customer satisfaction/loyalty survey processes, and to modify call flows and operational processes to support customer experience objectives. For virtually every client, customer surveys are a key element in our assessment process and provide the data upon which to create actionable recommendations.
  • For a major online banking firm, McIntosh managed the email survey process generating performance data and service insights used by the organization to manage individual and team level performance and enhance service delivery.
  • For a hotel client, McIntosh created an innovative quality monitoring process leveraging a tactical evaluation tool in combination with fishbone analysis to identify not only performance gaps but also the root causes of those gaps. The fishbone analysis was critical to developing effective coaching and performance improvement plans.
  • McIntosh has conducted Kano survey  studies for firms in the electric utility, airline, media/cable, hospitality, and financial services industries. We have expertise in measuring the relevant and can eliminate organizational bias and mythology from the customer experience debate.
  • For clients across a wide range of industries, we have developed post call and enterprise survey questionnaires to be administered via email, phone, chat, voice, and automated phone channels.
  • For the nation’s leading telecommunications firm, we developed a customer satisfaction/loyalty survey for telephone service requests and field service repair personnel. In addition to measuring the impact of the service request and repair interactions, we also developed surveys for customers who had not interacted with the firm to compare the loyalty of both populations.
  • For over 50% of our client base, McIntosh has developed, implemented, and sometimes managed post-transaction surveys measuring satisfaction, loyalty, interaction times, and service quality.
  • For a retail financial service client, McIntosh conducted mystery shops/calls to gauge the success of retail site and contact center support for marketing objectives. These mystery shops/calls are conducted quarterly and are the basis for measuring retail and contact center compliance. Additionally, based on feedback from the shops and calls, the client has streamlined operations and enhanced their marketing promotions.
  • McIntosh has defined and delivered quality assurance processes focused on generating customer loyalty and measuring operational effectiveness for virtually every client in these segments. We have conducted extensive transaction monitoring, completed customer surveys by function, and have compiled client specific customer databases generating valuable customer insights. Regardless of market segment, our methodology accurately assesses customers’ requirements, preferences, and aspirations for service deriving operational tactics capable of delivering differentiated service and support.
  • McIntosh has conducted in-store mystery shops for multiple retail clients with both storefront and contact center customer facing operations. For a major home improvement chain, McIntosh consultants conducted mystery shops for the client organization, replicating the process at competitor locations by market to generate an in-market competitive report. For a major credit card marketer we conducted mystery shops evaluating the firm’s retail partners and their compliance with contractual requirements to offer and support the credit card product. For a major money transfer provider, we conducted mystery shop calls to retail locations to identify training and compliance issues.

Consulting Insights:


An simple apology can impact a customer’s willingness to recommend a firm.

Apologies do not resolve issues, they do not correct errors, but accompanying problem resolution, they do positively impact the customer’s willingness to recommend a firm. Based on a statistically valid sample of random calls, McIntosh uncovered the following relationship of between an apology and the customer’s willingness to recommend a firm.

  • An inverse correlation of -.856 when the agent failed to apologize after an error or missed commitment. The customer;s initial dissatisfied intensified and based on the strength of the correlation the customer would not be an advocate or promoter of the firm’s services.
  • An inverse correlation of -.269 when the agent apologized. While not erasing the stigma of a poor product or service experience, the initial dissatisfaction is not intensified as was the case with no apology. The agent has an opportunity to reengage with the customer and repair the relationship.
Customer Irritants

If loyalty is enhanced by rapid resolution and efficient, frictionless contact handling, what agent behaviors damage loyalty? A review of utility consumer call observations and accompanying surveys results revealed an inverse correlation between specific agent behaviors and customer loyalty. The customer experience and loyalty was diminished when agents:

  • Interrupted a customer who was speaking
  • Talked over a customer who was attempting to convey information or ask a question
  • Corrected a customer when they misspoke (not a consequential issue or understanding)

Agents exhibiting any of these behaviors generated loyalty results 25% lower than agents who did not engage in these behaviors. Loyalty was measured by the customer’s willingness to recommend the firm.

Need to consult with an expert?

We’re happy to speak with you about your upcoming project.

Request A Proposal

Need more information?

Browse through our White Papers on various industry topics.

View Our White Papers