CX Journal header
State of Voice Of The Customer Programs
September 2011


Voice of the customer (VoC) programs have become part of the vocabulary for most customer experience professionals. But how effective are these efforts? In this edition of the CX Journal, we discuss new research that benchmarks the maturity of VoC programs at nearly 200 large companies.


There's more going on. We just kicked-off our Q3 survey which examines customer experience metrics. We invite you to participate in the research and get a free copy of the report and a chance to win a $50 certificate.


1109 Take Q3 211 Survey 

Of course, you have to first put up with a little advertising for the

Customer Experience Professionals Association ( If you're a member, then you should plan to join us at the Members Insight Exchange in Boston on October 19th and 20th. If you're not yet a member of the CXPA, then what are you waiting for?!?


In this edition of the CX Journal, we also highlight blog posts that describe how to build real loyalty and introduce some customer experience mistakes to avoid.


On a personal note, I will be walking in the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk on September 18th. This is my 5th year walking with my son at this wonderful event which raises money to conquer cancer. If you're inclined, I'd appreciate your donation. Thanks!


The State of Voice of the Customer Programs, 2011

We recently published The State Of Voice of the Customer Programs, 2011 which assesses voice of the customer (VoC) programs at 192 large companies. Nearly three-quarters of companies reported that their VoC programs are already successful.


The report introduces a new tool, Temkin Group's VoC Maturity Assessment.We use this assessment to gauge VoC programs in each of the "Six Ds" of a closed-loop VoC program:  

  1. Detect: Monitor the right feedback at the right time from the right customers and combine it with other key data sources.
  2. Disseminate: Put information in the hands of the right people at the right time in the right form so they can act on it.
  3. Diagnose: Gain a deeper understanding of problems or opportunities that are uncovered.
  4. Discuss: Get the right people from the right organizations reviewing the right information to understand what's affecting customers.
  5. Design: Follow user-centric approaches for identifying changes that will improve the customer experience.
  6. Deploy: Make ongoing changes to the experiences and the monitoring of those changes.
On average, the companies received ratings between "poor" and "okay" across all six Ds, with the highest score in "Discuss" and the lowest in "Detect." 

1109 VoC results for 6Ds 

While most firms haven't come close to mastering all of these areas, about one-quarter of VoC programs ended up with "good" or "very good" ratings in each of the six areas.


Our analysis also assessed where each VoC program is along our five stages of VoC maturity. Only 2% of the companies are "Transformers," which is the highest level of VoC maturity.

1109 VoC maturity  

 Customer Experience Matters Blog

Here are some recent posts from Customer Experience Matters:

Levels Of Loyalty Update

The Customer Experience Professionals Association community has grown very quickly to about 800 people. We're thrilled to see so much interest in the discipline of customer experience management.

We recently held a webinar on how to tap into unstructured data and have another one this week which identifies best practices in customer journey mapping. These have been extremely popular with our members. Our five committees are formulating plans to add even more value for CXPA members.

I'm really excited about our Members Insight Exchange in Boston on October 19th and 20th. We're filling in the agenda and it already looks great. It will be a wonderful opportunity to network, learn, and have fun. During lunch on the first day we'll be announcing the 1to1 Customer Champions and we'll be spending the second day at Fenway Park, which includes a VIP tour. 
Temkin Group Update

We have exciting research coming out over the next month which includes the 2011 Temkin Trust Ratings. We have also kicked off research for a report in October called Customer Journey Mapping Best Practices and as we mentioned earlier, we are also doing a study on customer experience metrics.


If you're looking to accelerate your organization's customer experience transformation efforts, here are a number of ways that

Temkin Group can help:
  • Assessments of customer experience efforts, to identify gaps and opportunities to accelerate your transformation efforts
  • Speeches and webinars on a wide range of customer experience and leadership topics
  • Interactive workshops for executive teams or other groups to gain alignment around key customer experience principles and priorities or to develop plans in areas such as voice of the customer programs
  • Educational curricula to establish and reinforce an understanding of proven customer experience principles across an organization
  • Strategy reviews of marketing and product plans for vendors who want to help companies transform their customer experience
Don't forget to take our Q3 survey about customer experience metrics.


Drop me a line at, visit our Website at, or give us a call at (617) 916-2075.



Bruce Temkin
Customer Experience Transformist
& Managing Partner
Temkin Group

Chair, Customer Experience Professionals Association

Follow me on Twitter  

In This Issue
>The State of VoC Programs
> Customer Experience Matters Blog
> CXPA Update
> Temkin Group Update
> Customer Experience Tidbits
> 9 Recommendations For NPS Programs
Temkin Group
We are a research and consulting firm that combines thought leadership with a deep understanding of the dynamics of large organizations to help senior executives accelerate their customer experience transformational efforts

Customer Experience


> Only 68% of US consumers are satisfied with their recent medical experiences


> 9% of large US companies have "strong" customer service ratings, while 70% are "weak" or "very weak"


> Amazon, Kohl's and Costco are the top retailers in the 2011 Temkin Experience Ratings   


>Anthem, Charter Communications, and Blue Shield of CA are the least recommended companies  


> Customer experience leaders enjoy a double-digit advantage in consumer loyalty 


> 61% of companies want to lead their industry in customer experience within three years   


> Customer experience leaders have 12.7 percentage points more customers likely to recommend them than laggards  

Quick Links

Temkin Group Website 


Customer Experience Matters Blog 


Temkin Ratings  


Customer Experience Professionals Association 

9 Recommendations For Net Promoter Score

1. Stop dreaming about an "ultimate question."

2. Look for magic in the "why."

3. Focus on improvements, not questions

4. Don't lose sight of segments.

5. Understand the elements of experience.

6. De-emphasize the "N" in NPS. 

7. Tap into the power of the language. 

8. Build a strong VoC program, with or without NPS.

9. Remember, this is a long-term journey.

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