How NPS Impacts Every Department In Your Company

Back in the old’n days, when business took place over the phone instead of email, people worked in actual offices. And by office, I mean individual spaces that had walls, a door and sometimes even a window or two. Not everyone had these special places, but enough to where the size and location of your office was a status symbol of sorts and often coveted. The dream of every nine to fiver (not the Fiverr we know today) was to have the plush corner office with a view.

Slowly computers replaced word processors and internet replaced the land lines. As our form of communication moved away from phone and more to email, so did our dreams of the executive suite.

That dream was replaced with fabric half-walls, laminate-top desks and cloth swivel chairs. While not as private, these cubicles came with just enough wall(ish) space to make them feel like home … sort of. And, if you were lucky, with just the right amount of slouching, you could trick yourself into a false sense of privacy.

It wasn’t long before people began to realize that these cubicle farms were actually producing some interesting yields. The more “open” environment was increasing communication and collaboration between different departments. And before you knew it, the walls were gone.

As Ronald Regan once said, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down these fabric walls”. (Or, something like that.)

This is when we were all introduced to the idea of an “open office”. An environment free of walls and corner offices, a place where engineers play ping pong with someone in sales. Where someone in accounting can sit next to someone in creative without obsessing about their lack of structure. And where HR is having beers with … actually that hasn’t happened yet.

The open office has taught us some important lessons. The biggest of which is that when we all play nice together, shit gets done and companies start making some serious progress.

But, there is still something missing. While we’ve reduced the number of silos within our companies, we’ve just replaced it with a bigger one. While tearing down those fabric walls may have gotten the party started internally, we failed to invite the honored guests — the customers.

That’s where NPS comes in. It’s your customer’s invitation to join the party.

They are the life of the party and play nice with everyone. And that’s because, no matter what your role is within the company, your work impacts them. And, equally as important, their feedback makes you better at your job.

You could say that NPS is the next evolution of the open office.

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Here’s how NPS impacts each department

CEOs/Founders/Execs: Used as a KPI, NPS provides one simple metric that impacts the entire company and provides a clear picture to the health of the organization. It’s also highly predictive which gives the company the ability to have a reliable forward-looking metric (if measured and acted on correctly that is).

Finance: When tied to an LTV (Lifetime Value), NPS is a great indicator of both future growth and churn. In fact, the in-dashboard calculator provided within Promoter.io can be used to quantify your short and long-term revenue at risk, as well as any potential new revenue. 

The new NPS calculator by Promoter, gives you a real-time perspective of new potential revenue and what's at risk.

The new NPS calculator by Promoter, gives you a real-time perspective of new potential revenue and what’s at risk.

Simply put, your finance department can drastically improve financial forecasts based on your NPS profile.

HR: If you weren’t already aware, NPS can be used to measure employee satisfaction as well. It’s called eNPS (Employee NPS) and it’s a tool that’s available to any Promoter.io customer. 

While the wording of the question is changed slightly, the methodology remains the same. HR can use utilize the framework of NPS to measure the satisfaction of their employees, determine the likelihood to recruit new hires and make departmental or company-wide improvements based on candid feedback.

Customer Support/Success: For this department, NPS is all about routine account engagement and proactive identification of issues that may be related to churn, reduction in usage, etc. NPS allows the support/success team to triage issues before they become more significant. In the process, they benefit by often reducing the volume of future support needed. NPS also provides the why in most cases behind a user’s behavior, something pure data analytics do not.

Product/Engineering: NPS provides feedback that can be associated to brand/product sentiment and broken down clearly into different categories. Since one individual customer can’t necessarily speak louder than others, categorization normalizes the data and removes the issue of the vocal minority driving product direction. More passive users/customers that may not go out of their way to leave feedback, tend to become more engaged with NPS as well.

The insights gained from NPS can provide individual trends/feedback themes which can be looked at alongside usage and revenue impact to help weigh product decisions. This will often times lead to some very clear drivers of detractors and promoters within the product which helps to identify new opportunities.

Marketing: For marketers, it’s critical to understand who are the best customers and what about the brand/product drives their advocacy? NPS helps identify how they should position as the key message behind the product, what resonates with prospects, where they WIN and what messaging they should possibly shy away from to reduce detractors before they even touch the product.

In addition, with enough customer data, marketers can get a very clear picture of what an “ideal” or best customer looks like. NPS will help surface what customer stories or personas should be targeted and focused on. This can be a massive win for many marketing teams who aren’t always sure. It will help them spend more effectively, focus their message and convert at much higher rates (not to mention having customers they know are going to likely be Promoters from the start).

Sales: Promoters are a sales rep’s best friend. They provide insight into the key motivations of future buyers. They help identify the top drivers of their product/service and how best the leverage them. Not to mention their ability to make solid introductions and serve as convincing references for future prospects.

Imagine for a moment the benefit of lead scoring if you can easily take into consideration similar attributes that a lead has in common with existing promoters of your brand/product. Gone are the days of “industry” and “number of employees” being the main data points there.

Sales staff can get a ton of value from detractors as well. They help to prepare for any potential objections and product shortcomings that may be surfaced on sales calls. Additionally, detractors can provide insight into which type of prospect is most likely to drive down life time value and absorb ongoing support resources.

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At the end of the day, if you’re leaving your customers out of your silo party, you’re making a huge mistake. Their voice is the one that carries the most through any department within your company. It’s time you evolve to open office 2.0 and send your customers their NPS invite.

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Dana Severson

Dana Severson is the Director of Marketing at Promoter.io and cofounder of Startups Anonymous. Former founder & CEO of Chasm.io/Wahooly and AngelPad Alum. In addition to focusing on growth at Promoter, Dana is a weekly columnist for Inc.com

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