Client Feedback Tool
  • Feedback Action: Be in the Top 3%

    Posted on September 29th, 2011 No comments
    Feedback Action: Be in the Top 3%

    Our research shows fewer than 15% of firms collect feedback regularly.  Forrester researchers indicate fewer than 20% of firms take any action on the feedback they collect.  These indicators suggest only 3% of firms have an effective process to both collect feedback and turn that feedback into action.

    And yet, without action, collecting feedback is really a futile and useless activity.  Turning feedback into action requires a framework and a process to support an effective, simple, feedback collection/response mechanism.

    Our Client Feedback Tool captures and automates the entire feedback process, and is customized for professional services organizations.  The latest release (v4.3) includes new, extended capabilities to confirm your feedback reactions were effective.

    Feedback begins with the questions.  We’ve designed each to be focused, specific, and concise in order to collect clear metrics.  Survey designs must then collect an appropriate number of questions in a relevant manner, so that you only ask the right questions when needed – minimizing wasteful efforts.  Your clients don’t have time to waste, so answering questions that provide them no tangible benefit ultimately discourages their participation.

    When someone responds to a feedback request, action can only happen if someone is alerted to the results.  Particularly for professional services firms, feedback works best in real-time.  Immediately after someone responds, our feedback process alerts everyone who needs the alert, based on what kind of scores were provided.  Don’t limit feedback to just the president or someone in marketing – action happens best when the people doing the work get the feedback.

    Which brings us to the action.  The people taking care of the client – those actually doing the work – must know what the feedback is before they can take any action on it.  The Client Feedback Tool’s real-time alerts link your firm’s team members to the feedback they are responsible for.  Upon reviewing the results, each person can document, within the tool, what their follow-up actions have been or should be.  They may even respond to the client directly from the tool, tracking that response as part of the feedback record.   By responding to the client (in any manner) and logging the response (using the tool), we have demonstrated an 83% reduction in further client-identified problems.

    Now, in the latest version of the Client Feedback Tool, you can take this process one step further, completing the feedback cycle.  Beneath each feedback response you can click one button which initiates another follow-up survey in the future.  By linking these two surveys, you can track your progress and confirm that the actions taken to respond to a client have indeed been successful at better meeting client expectations.

    Demonstrating this simple, systematic feedback process to existing and prospective clients is a great differentiator in the marketplace, and builds trust that you listen, respond, and confirm your processes are the best they can be for each client.

  • 2011 Best Firms to Work for Summit

    Posted on September 28th, 2011 Matt No comments

    The 2011 Best Firms to Work for Summit, presented by ZweigWhite, will be held September 29-30 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel.  This two-day conference will cover topics such as globalization, intergenerational dynamics, motivating and inspiring commitment, recruiting and retaining great teams, diversification strategies, and staffing and cash flow.    

    If you’re attending this event, please join Mike Phillips, Founder of DesignFacilitator, for his Thursday, September 29 2:00pm presentation: Using Strategic Feedback to Enhance Staff Performance and Retention.

    For more information on the event visit http://www.zweigwhite.com/events/BestFirmsToWorkFor/index.asp.

  • New Version – Client Feedback Tool v4.3 Released!

    Posted on September 27th, 2011 No comments

    We’re excited to announce the latest release and new features in the Client Feedback Tool version 4.3.

    While we have introduced dozens of minor refinements and fixes, we’re most excited about three new features that were our most popular user requests this year:

    1. Batch Survey Sending: You may now download an Excel template file, copy/paste data from another application accordingly, upload the filled in form, and send dozens or even hundreds of surveys at once.  For large annual surveys, centralizing surveying, or even just quickly starting a feedback process for new customers – this simple process makes managing the sending of survey much easier.  You’ll find this feature in the “Ask for Feedback” navigation section, labeled “Send Multiple Surveys.”
    2. Follow-Up Surveys: The most important aspect of any feedback program is what you do with the responses.  Particularly important is your reaction to scores below Met Expectations.  We have had a “follow-up” tool in place since Version 2.0 of the Client Feedback Tool, but never a clear way to confirm that the follow-up action was effective in producing better results.  Now, at the bottom of each reply, you’ll see two follow-up buttons.  One allows you to (as before) reply or document a reply to the feedback response.  The new button will trigger a follow-up survey.  Upon clicking the “Send Follow-up Survey” button, you will be taken to the Survey Assign wizard, with all steps already filled in.  Simply confirm the information, and click the “Send” button.  If it’s been fewer than 30 days since the reply was logged, the new survey will be scheduled automatically for a later date.  When the recipient responds, the two survey replies (the old and new) will be linked together, so you can review the history, and confirm your follow-up actions produced better results.
    3. Template Search:  You can now search for a survey template by Survey ID or key word when sending a survey.

    Training for these new features will be provided at an upcoming training event.  Current subscribers will be invited to a training event via email shortly.

  • Project Delivery – SHAZAM!

    Posted on September 15th, 2011 No comments

    Shazam! An exclamation we’ve all heard – but most of us (myself included until today) probably don’t know the origin. In 1973 Marvel Comics created a character who, upon shouting this word, became Captain America. Shazam has many meanings, one of which is this:

     S   The wisdom of Solomon
     H   The strength of Hercules
     A   The stamina of Atlas
     Z   The power of Zeus
     A   The courage of Achilles
     M   The speed of Mercury

    Now what does Shazam! have to do with project delivery?  Well, who wouldn’t want a little Shazam! in their projects?  Wisdom, strength, stamina, power, courage, and speed – what if we could purposefully and systematically introduce a little of these on every project we touched?

    Don’t go into your next project scheduling meeting and shout Shazam! while wearing a cape (though if you do, please let me know how it goes).  Instead, learn what some thought leaders in the A/E/C industry have been doing to bring about real, meaningful, and valuable change to entrenched project delivery methods – with results that have Shazam! impacts for everyone involved.

    In 2003 DesignFacilitator grew out of a small A/I firm looking for ways to do things better.  We developed a body of knowledge using client feedback to help project delivery firms continuously improve.  As we encountered more and more organizations who were looking for ways to do things better, with better results, and with better value for both clients and themselves, we began to find other thought leaders doing different, but equally amazing things.

    One group leading the charge with a big dose of Shazam! is the Lean Construction Institute.  Don’t let the name fool you – they spend as much focus on the design and engineering processes as they do construction.   The lean movement takes the many lessons learned in manufacturing (as pioneered by Toyota) and other industries, and applies them to every day projects.  This amazingly innovative and yet necessarily practical group of people continue to discuss, promote, and operate design and construction processes that cut costs and schedule by huge margins, while increasing product quality and consistency.  And they do all this with a keen focus on maximizing value to the clients.

    For the last year, DesignFacilitator has sponsored LCI and been actively involved in both their national Congress and many regional events.  If you are not yet aware of Lean Construction, or the ideas behind Continuous Improvement – I invite you to join us October 3-7th in Pasadena, CA at the 2011 LCI National Congress.   An introductory day outlines the key concepts of Lean, followed by two days of real-world case studies from architects, engineers,  contractors, and owners; followed by a fourth day of specialized break-out sessions.

    DesignFacilitator and LCI co-sponsor Newforma will be hosting a 3-hour breakout session on Friday, October 7th to discuss real-world software tools that are helping firms around the world bring a little Shazam! to their projects.  You’ll hear from actual users and be able to participate in brainstorming sessions to help define a “state of the industry” approach for innovative project delivery.  We will demonstrate our Client Feedback Tool and how the process of Enterprise Feedback Management (EFM) helps everyone in your organization constantly adjust to meet client expectations.  Newforma will demonstrate their Project Center and highlight the value opportunities found in Project Information Management (PIM).

    If you are able to join us, please register here – admission is free to Congress attendees (register separately for the Congress here).

    Those who can’t make the trip can’t afford to miss this required reading, and learn how a little Shazam! can change your project delivery for the better.