What is important at this time?
- Reliability - there is follow through, the service and its staff do what they say they will do.
- Tangibles – evidence or impact of service
- Empathy – being known and understanding the vulnerabilities of the person, and their situation.
What tools might be suitable?
A small-group discussion guided by a facilitator. It is used to learn more about opinions on a designated topic, such as the experience of the customer when receiving service, and to guide future action. These can be particularly useful to connect with customers on a particular topic. It’s important to plan well to create a non-threatening environment, in which people are free to talk openly, express their opinions and respond to the ideas and opinions of others. When conducting a focus group, it’s meant to be informal, honest and fun. There is some brief information about focus groups here and some more detailed information here.
Feedback from other people involved
Where appropriate getting feedback from other people involved can be very informative.
Customer consultation projects will usually involve a combination of measurement techniques such as; surveys & questionnaires, focus groups, interviews etc. and tend to be broader in scope. Consultations will vary according to the issue as well as to time and resource constraints. There should be a process to collate & analyse results and then the development of improvement plan to implement changes. It’s important that people involved at the beginning of a consultation process are involved throughout the process and kept informed about outcomes and improvements as a result of the process.