In Customer & Client Surveys, Why Feedback Matters

When patronage of south east Queensland's bus services dropped on 13 of 16 of the state's operators, the state government realised that they were losing the fight for customer loyalty.

A review was thus commissioned and one of the main recommendations was to increase the number of high-frequency routes in Brisbane from its current number of 19 to 26 – in line with other leading world cities.

The government also decided to seek public feedback on the matter to see if there were other factors frustrating bus users.

It quickly found out that customers were keen to have their say, as transport and main roads minister Scott Emerson explains.

"During the first two rounds of consultation we received more than 6,000 pieces of feedback and overwhelmingly passengers told us they wanted more frequent services and better fares," said Mr Emerson in a statement on March 12.

Once the report was made public last Thursday, that feedback didn't stop.

Mr Emerson said that since its publication, there had been 40,000 website visits, and visitors left 1,700 comments in the first hour alone.

The government now plans to extend the window for public feedback by an additional two weeks to ensure all passengers have the opportunities to comment on the report's recommendations.

"This is a very important phase in our plan to build a better bus network, deliver better fares and given the level of feedback I'm prepared to take additional time to ensure everyone has the chance to have a say," said Mr Emerson.

This is a great example of the importance of seeking the customer's perspective when things don't seem to be going as planned.

A customer feedback survey can help businesses not only diagnose which of their strategies are not working, but can also point the way towards what could improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.

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