flexiblefullpage -
Currently Reading

How customer-centric is your company? Take our self-assessment test and find out.

billboard -

How customer-centric is your company? Take our self-assessment test and find out.

IBM, GE, and American Express are among the Fortune 500 companies that have implemented “voice of the customer” programs to help create a customer-centric culture. How customer-centric is your company? Take our self-assessment test and find out.

By Charlie Scott, Contributing Editor November 7, 2010

1. Do you solicit customer feedback?

  • We ask questions in person – 1 pt
  • We have a survey at the closing table – 2 pts
  • We send an electronic survey – 3 pts
  • We retain a third party to collect feedback – 4 pts


2. We have identified the key metrics of customer satisfaction for:

  • Our product – 1 pt
  • Our product and sales process – 2pts
  • Our product, sales, and construction processes – 3 pts
  • Our product, sales, construction, customer service processes – 4 pts
  • All areas in our company that touch the customer – 8 pts


3. Do you review customer feedback on a regular basis?

  • Every survey that comes in – 1pt
  • Every survey and monthly totals – 2pts
  • Every survey and monthly totals by community – 3pts
  • All the above plus trend analysis and annual reviews – 4pts


4. Where does your voice of the customer (VOC) program reside in your company?

  • Service department – 1 pt
  • Sales management – 2 pt
  • Operations management – 3 pts
  • Owner or executive leadership – 8 pts


5. Where is customer feedback shared with the company personnel and vendor partners?

  • On a bulletin board – 1 pt
  • In a newsletter – 2 pts
  • In regular company meetings - 3 pts
  • All of the above plus regular community and boardroom meetings – 4 pts


6. What is your company’s philosophy on customer satisfaction?

  • Customer satisfaction can help us avoid negative PR and stay out of trouble – 1 pt
  • Customer satisfaction can help with market position, referrals, and reduce costs – 2 pts
  • Customer satisfaction is a core strategy and a major part of our growth plans – 4 pts
  • All of the above and it is a total team effort – 8 pts


7. We have the following positions/titles (or similar responsibilities/mindset):

  • Service manager – 1 pt
  • Customer care champion – 4 pts
  • Chief customer experience officer (CCEO) – 8 pts


8. Our customer feedback tool:

  • Collects customer ratings – 1 pt
  • Collects ratings and comments – 2 pts
  • Collects ratings, comments, and digs deep for customer feelings – 8 pts


9. Do you utilize outside experts or consultants to objectively collect or analyze your customer feedback to the same degree you do with architects, accountants, advertising agencies, website designers, and general business consultants?

  • No – 0 pts
  • Customer feedback/collection – 1 pt
  • Customer feedback, analysis, and benchmarking – 2 pts
  • Customer feedback, analysis/benchmarking, and improvement – 4 pts
  • All of the above and design/engineering of the customer experience – 8 pts


10. Our “willingness to refer” rate (customers indicating they would refer their builder to a family member or friend) is:

  • Unknown – minus 5 pts
  • Less than 80 percent – minus 10 pts
  • 81-85 percent – 1 pt
  • 86-90 percent – 4 pts
  • 91-95 percent – 8 pts
  • 96 percent or more – 10 pts


11. Our referral sales rate (customers citing they bought their home due to a referral from a family member or friend) is:
Unknown – minus 5 pts

  • 0-10 percent – 0 pt
  • 11-20 percent – 5 pts
  • 21-30 percent – 10 pts
  • 31-40 percent – 25 pts


12. We invest as much time in designing, reviewing, and improving our “customer experience plan” as we do with the products/blueprints we build (note: provide the ratio of product design hours to experience design hours):

  • 20:1 – 1 pt
  • 10:1 – 3 pts
  • 5:1 – 10 pts
  • 2:1 – 20 pts

Customer Centricity Scale (10 point allowance for sole proprietorships):

  • 0-15    Transactional
  • 16-30    Transactional with customer-conscious
  • 31-45    Experience business model
  • 46-80    Relational business model with referral sales potential
  • 81+    Market-leading customer-centric reputation with 40+ percent referral sales potential


Charlie Scott is a principal at Woodland, O’Brien & Scott, a customer satisfaction research and consulting firm with offices in Indianapolis and Minneapolis. He can be reached at charlies@woodlandobrien.com.

Related Stories


Five Tips for Better Business Advice 

Getting the best advice means knowing where the best advice comes from 


Would You Invest in Your Business?

A brief guide to Gauging Your Business’ Value


Meeting Right: Maximizing Meeting Value

Sales leader and author Mark Richardson shares his advice for how custom builders, and leaders throughout residential construction, can improve the effectiveness of thier staff meetings


Winning With the Trades

Even in a tight labor market, there are ways custom builders can stand out as the preferred company for their trades


Fog, and 7 Tips for Driving Through It

The good new is we have now been through this unprecedented time before


Searching for Social Media’s Secret Sauce

Brightleaf Homes is still looking, but the builder has learned some valuable lessons along the way


Cannabis Workplace Policy and the Weed Minefield

Builders need skilled labor, but should their workplace policy drop zero tolerance for cannabis and risk taking on more liability?


Backstory: Textbook Case of Student Becoming Design/Build Owner

While construction was not in her blood, education and planning lead to success for this Minnesota custom builder


Backstory: Riding a Wave to Being a Builder

This is Steve Thomas' story about following your passion to become a successful builder

Custom Builder

Marketing 101: Be the Expert

Rotelle Development gets its brand out there by positioning staff as a resource

boombox1 -
boombox2 -
native1 -

More in Category

native2 -
halfpage1 -