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21 Aug. 2022

Professional services firms: how do you measure customer satisfaction?

Professional services firms: how do you measure customer satisfaction?
  • customer relationship
  • Professional Services
  • satisfaction

Unlike the BtoC or start-up sectors, legal and accounting professionals make relatively little use of satisfaction surveys. And yet, the usefulness of these programs is well established, both in terms of customer loyalty and improved practices.

Satisfaction surveys are crucial in many respects, especially for professionals who rely heavily on referrals. They allow us to show customers that we value their opinions, update our database and verify the strength of our links with key customers. Surveys can also help defuse critical situations : a dissatisfied customer may not only look for another service provider, but may also rate you negatively on social networks.

Beyond this relational aspect, satisfaction surveys are also an indirect opportunity for business development by presenting new practices/offers that may inspire customers to entrust you with new projects. Last but not least, it’s obviously an ideal way of identifying organizational and pricing problems, as well as solutions that will enable you to keep in step with your customers’ expectations.


If you want to get the most out of a satisfaction survey, it’s crucial to ask yourself a few questions beforehand:

– Why? Determining whether the survey is being carried out for image-building, loyalty-building, business development or price modification purposes is necessary to design it correctly and get the expected results.

– Who? The survey can be entrusted to an internal communications manager or to an external service provider with the advantage of neutrality and objectivity.

– When? Ideally, a customer questionnaire should be sent out after each file has been processed. Some lawyers and notaries have even decided to devote a tab on their site to a satisfaction questionnaire. If the objective is strategic change or perception measurement, this can be done annually or every 2 years.

– With whom? Depending on your objective (loyalty or development), you’ll need to select a sample of your most important customers, or a more representative sample. Why not survey your former customers to find out why they left or didn’t return?

How? Several methods are possible, such as group interviewsthe dispatch of e-mail questionnaires which enables quantitative data to be collected; the telephone interviews and interviews which have the advantage of deepening the qualitative aspects of the survey. identical professional/customer interviews to compare responses and differences in perception. It is also possible to combine these tools effectively by carrying out an initial quantitative survey, the findings of which will guide the qualitative interviews.

Which approach? An invitation to take part in a survey, whether electronic or face-to-face, will be successful if you explain the benefits to your customer, such as improved service. In all cases, guaranteeing anonymity will help us to obtain more candid answers. If the customer wishes, this can be lifted, making it easier to resolve any issues raised.

Which questions to ask? Start with easy, closed questions to put the respondent at ease before asking questions that require more thought. Graduation options from 1 to 5 add nuance to the answers, allowing you to pinpoint your strengths and areas for improvement. Questions may cover a wide range of subjects: punctuality, IT and contact tools, billing methods, how they heard about the company and why they chose it, the image of the firm/studio, the added value of the services provided, the fluidity of communication and, last but not least, their suggestions.

What happens next? Before embarking on a satisfaction measurement process, you need to be able to implement any customer requests. If not, you’ll just have demonstrated a lack of willpower and efficiency. Once the quantitative and qualitative analysis has been completed, it’s time to draw all the conclusions and decide on the next step. A feedback conference, accompanied by a drink offered to customers who took part in the survey, is the ideal opportunity to thank them and show them that their suggestions have been taken into account and implemented.


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