What is your North Star Metric for Service & Support?


What is the key measure of success for your support services team? What is the one metric that is supported by all the other ones?

Is it a process measurement, like cycle time or first-pass yield? Or is it a customer metric like NPS or CSAT?

When the organization has to make tough decisions, which metric is the "trump card?"

Best Answers

  • StevenForth
    StevenForth Founding Partner | Expert ✭✭✭
    Answer ✓

    Hi @David Seaton Good question. I would probably want to do some form of a Five Whys kind of exercise with them so that they led themselves to the answer. Once we got there (assuming we got there) I would use a fishbone diagram to show how the process metrics feed into the customer centric metric.

    I still think that V2C is the gold standard for these metrics.


  • David Seaton

    Thanks for the insightful comments, @Patrick Martin, @Steven Forth, and @Gail Propson!

    While there were different opinions on which customer sentiment metric to use, no one advocated for a process-based metric like turnaround time, quality, or response time.

    If I had to pick one north star for support, I would choose CES because of the correlation with loyalty. CSAT would be a close second. And, to Gail's point, I'd be collecting the qualitative feedback that gave meaning to the score.

    What would you say to an organization that was committed to a process metric like turnaround time or SLA compliance?

  • GailPropson
    GailPropson Founding Partner | Scholar ✭✭

    Hi @David Seaton ,

    Yes, turnaround time and and SLA are good metrics to follow and are more focused on the customers expectations of service.

    Just today I read an interesting article posted on the Customer Think website, "Customer Experience Indexes: Modern Thinking". The article suggested instead of focusing on one metric, such as NPS or CES or CSAT, use a combination of metrics to get a complete picture of what is needed to achieve goals. The article suggested using Value Quotient & Customer Lifetime Value as more meaningful metrics for senior leaders and teams.

    Great discussion!


  • Zoltan A. Nagy

    Hi @David Seaton,

    Turnaround time, SLA compliance are transactional type of KPI's and serve greatest value to the Procurement or Vendor Management departments of the Customer to commoditize services and thus making them comparable to your competitors'. Although these measurements are very often used but still focusing on ourselves and not on our customers. Not useless though as you can look at those as "industry norms", certain levels you need to exceed to remain in the race.

    NPS and CES and any other combinations as mentioned by @Gail Propson, are better candidates, linking our services to Customer outcomes.

    I like this conversation, we are in a widely unexplored territory here.