Constant Innovation Is Key to Customer Satisfaction

1st February 2013

Internet companies must constantly innovate to lead

Standing still is simply not an option in today's fast moving world. Once upon a time, a business owner could design a good product and sell it unmodified for many years.

But today's Internet-based organizations must constantly innovate to maintain their lead in a changing market.

Providing great new functionalities leaves them no room for complacency, because each improvement encourages the demand for another.

"For creative people, it's actually more fun to work this way," says Esther Kohn-Bentley, CEO at Panoramic Feedback, which provides online 360-degree feedback for businesses and governments.

"I love the challenge of developing new and better ways to do things.

"For example, a year ago our clients were informing us they found it exhausting to manage the contact details for everyone who may respond to our 360-degree feedback questionnaires. Sometimes there are thousands of email addresses in a single project.

360 Degree Feedback"So we developed a special site that frees up the administrators. It allows the email addresses to be entered by the same individuals who are going to be assessed.".

Customers loved the new function, but instantly told the company they wanted more. Because some of the addresses were entered inaccurately, they were receiving a lot of bounce-backs. They didn't appreciate the extra work of tracing and correcting those addresses.

"We gave our developers an urgent new task," says Kohn-Bentley, "and now we can go directly and automatically to the people who entered incorrect information, and ask them to correct it on a special website that's easy to use. It's a good solution because it transfers the responsibility from overworked administrators to the people who actually possess the information."

In the meantime, other clients told the company that it was not the best use of their time to generate feedback reports and send them on to the subjects. So the company's developers developed an automatic function that sends out the reports directly to the subject, once again winning them kudos from the customers.

Panoramic FeedbackInnovation results in better customer satisfaction and convenience, says Kohn-Bentley. But, she points out, online 360-degree feedback providers can never stand still. "As soon as we finished developing the most recent tool, we started consulting with customers about our next great improvement. We're not talking about it publicly yet, but we expect it will make their work lives better still.".

Once that's complete, you can be certain it will spark a demand for even more useful features.

Online service providers like Panoramic Feedback may add valued new features to their products, but before they can enjoy the kudos, those features will spark an urgent demand for even more innovation.