Top Questions and Answers from Medallia Experts on COVID-19

Modifying Experience Programs During COVID-19: Q&A

On Tuesday, March 24, Medallia hosted a Webinar focused on helping our customers navigate their CX and EX programs during challenging times. This third blog post is the Q&A output from the Webinar and shows what customer and employee practitioners are thinking about as they and their businesses face this transition.

Q: Should we turn off “contact” if we don’t have the capacity to close the loop right now?

A: If you have asked for customer feedback yet are not able to follow up, it can turn a “passive” into a “detractor.” The notion is to keep it on and close the loop or mitigate risk by trickling out requests for feedback so that you can handle closing the loop. Some will be more forgiving on timing in the current climate, as long as there is some form of a response.

Q: As a utility provider, what suggestions do you have for dealing with feedback around the financial pain that is just starting?

A: Great question. This is an area where many are hoping for some government intervention – to help pay bills and keep the power on. In any event, we are the front line to the customer and employees. I think it will be important for companies to show empathy and understanding around compensation metrics right now. We saw great leadership as the CEO of Marriott talked about recalibrating his leadership team and taking a pay cut to show goodwill and use the dollars toward other things such as retaining employees as long as possible.

Q: Do you have recommendations on how we can use Text Analytics to predict when customer behavior may change? Example: how will we know when panic buying will stop, and demand will drip?

A: Predicting at this time is challenging given the rapid state of changes. You can always ask additional questions to gather feedback, but what people say vs. what they do could be different. By tracking conversations on specific topics, we can look at which themes are slowing in popularity in order to gain more insights. Medallia’s AskNow functionality can also help gather insights.

Q: How can business-to-business (B2B) companies approach customers to gather feedback during this period or should we skip this for now?

A: It really depends on the case. Ask yourself what the goal is. What will you do with the information? Who will take action on it? It’s important to stay away from vanity metrics right now. This could be a great time to get feedback from employees on what they are hearing from customers—a potential approach to gathering feedback without looking self-serving in the midst of crisis.

Q: What is the point of doing employee surveys when the company is laying people off?

A: Think about the time right now. Many will be impacted – of course, those being let go, but also those left behind to keep the business moving. Consider adjusting how you communicate these decisions by showing the why behind them. Asking the right questions to the right population in the organization can be key. Perhaps obtaining not only feedback, but new ideas on how to handle arising issues and new business challenges can help keep employees feeling engaged and motivated – thus building a stronger internal community. Employees are observant. They are observing and examining behaviors, and deciding if this is a place, they want to be a part of when the dust has settled. The actions of the company now can be crucial to determining who remains loyal to the company in the future. Get feedback now. Take action to improve. Get employees involved in corporate challenges.

Q: Any views on how certain sectors are being impacted that can move to a digital footprint as we lockdown?

A: More and more customers are already jumping online as the shelter in place mandates grow, even if it wasn’t their primary channel in the past. People are expecting to get information, place orders, order food to be delivered and find new ways to socialize and work. Having tools in place to ensure digital experiences are good will be important. For example, we may not be able to obtain feedback from a visit to the store, but we can online—and this is across all sectors really.

Read Part I and Part II of this blog series.