Why do customers complain? Is it because a product or piece of equipment failed? Is it because they had to wait too long for service? Is it because they didn’t like the polo shirt worn by the technician who showed up on site?

All of these issues may play a factor in creating a dissatisfied customer. However, as shown in Aberdeen Group’s report, First-Time Fix: Revisit a Metric Driving Success (March 2016), the number one reason customers complain about service is that the technician was unable to resolve the issue they were called about.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it highlights a shift in the way service and customer interactions have evolved. In the past, showing up on-time or meeting an SLA is what mattered. Now, the customer is empowered and has options for spending their service dollar. As a result, just showing up is not good enough; you need to actually solve the problem… and you need to do it the first time.

This shift has far-reaching ramifications for service organizations and manufacturers. Metrics, goals, strategy, and technology all need to be re-evaluated. What might have worked just a couple years ago is no longer relevant.

However, you need not get too discouraged. In my recent report, I lay out a clear roadmap highlighting how organizations that excel at first-time fix got there.

Don’t lose sight of what matters to your customers. Don’t give them a reason to complain, or worse yet, ditch you for the competition. Customers want their problems solved. Do that on the first visit. It’s not just a good idea. It’s the key to providing service that customers value.

Image Source (Creative Commons): U.S Naval Forces Central Command.