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Fixing Points of Pain (POP)

Industry: All Industries

Keywords: Points of Pain, POP, Customer Satisfaction, Employee Satisfaction, Process Improvement,

Level: Intermediate to Advanced


In most manufacturing, service and government environments, between 20 and 30 percent of serious points of pain (POP) for end user customers are also POP for front line sales, support and service employees. Examples of poor internal service and support include ineffective product specification, guidance and empowerment for support and service reps, stale website data and knowledge management system (KMS) data and service staff inability to get answers from sales, marketing and operations. All of these issues, in turn, cause poorly designed/delivered products and inadequate response to the customer. If the internal service problem is rectified, you also immediately fix the external response POP as well as reduce the cost of staff chasing answers they should have had.

Attacking one joint problem can make you a hero with customers, executive management, the support and service staff, marketing and finance. Key solutions to employee POP that then enhance customer experience include:

    • Creating internal service agreements that require timely, complete response to internal requests that affect the external customer experience
    • Creating accountability for website and KMS quality to assure customers can self-service and employees can find the data they need
    • Enhancing customer expectations via an effective needs assessment and customer on-boarding process
    • Focused increase in empowerment of front line to assure that key customer issues can be handled without escalation to management.

These solutions are missing in over half of the companies that CCMC has assessed and are perfect targets for both inspection and process improvement by the Quality function. Goodman will outline a joint survey methodology to identify overlapping problems that allows granular quantification of the frequency and damage of POP in terms of lost revenue, additional cost of service and damage to employee loyalty. Practical examples from the electronics manufacturing industry, a government intelligence agency and financial services will be presented.


John Goodman

Vice Chairman, Customer Care Measurement & Consulting (CCMC), Arlington, VA, USA

Mr. Goodman is Vice Chairman of Customer Care Measurement and Consulting (CCMC). The universal adages, “It costs five times as much to win a new customer as to keep an existing one.” and “Twice as many people hear about a bad experience as a good one.” are both based on his research. He helped lead the 2022 National Rage Study as well as the 2021 National Delight Study, providing the latest data on complaining, service expectations and word of mouth. Harper Collins published the second edition of his book, “Strategic Customer Service”, in March, 2019.

He has also published, “Customer Experience 3.0”, with the American Management Association in July, 2014. Over the past 40 years, Mr. Goodman has managed more than 1,000 separate customer experience studies for 45 of the Fortune 100 as well as non-profit and government entities.

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