Do you know what Whangarei is?
Don’t worry, it’s not an exotic illness.
Whangarei is the northernmost city in New Zealand, and the capital of the Northland Region of the country.
“Is anyone there?” you might ask. Well, yes – 91,400 people to be exact.
One of these people is Tony Shi, Managing Director of Switch MSP, an IT Managed Service Provider (MSP) specializing in small-to-medium business in the region. And he’s a big SmileBack fan.
So how has SmileBack helped this small company in this relatively unknown town in New Zealand? And how did it all get started?
We talked with Tony about this and more for our first SmileBack podcast. Listen to what happened below, or read on for more.
Benefits of SmileBack
“The thing is, even though it is a small town, we have always had ambitions of targeting businesses in Auckland,” says Tony.
It makes sense too. Over one-third of New Zealand’s 4.9 million population lives there.
“But we never had something to prove ourselves,” says Tony. “With SmileBack, we do.”
Reputation in any market is a key differentiator. But in a small country like New Zealand, reputation is everything.
“The main benefit we saw with SmileBack was how, right away, our response rates for feedback increased massively,” says Tony.
“Previously, we saw a 0% response rate. Now we send out the faces in the survey, and in just one click, we have feedback we have been missing. Around 40% of our feedback requests are fulfilled.”
“We never had something to prove ourselves. With SmileBack, we do.”
By displaying this performance on the Switch MSP website – and by producing reports to take to prospective clients – Switch MSP were able to show they are better than the rest.
“It was a case of being able to put our money where our mouth is, and say ‘look, this is how good we are doing,’” says Tony.
“It has helped us show we are committed to feedback and getting better, and that we can be relied on.”
How it all began
“I would often go to the ConnectWise events, but they were always in the US,” says Tony. “Then in 2018, ConnectWise held an event New Zealand. There was a panel discussion about the importance of customer feedback and someone mentioned SmileBack as a solution.”
Tony actually thought he’d seen SmileBack before, and already loved the concept of the three faces.
“It turns out that was a completely different survey!” says Tony.
“But I liked how simple it was. It was just one-click. So I took a demo, as we had a zero percent response rate previously for reviews, and we signed up.”
Internal morale and goal setting with SmileBack
Switch MSP don’t just use SmileBack to solidify their reputation, though. It’s become the company-wide performance measurement.
“We have our weekly meetings where we run through the feedback we have received, our score, and any issues that come from it,” says Tony.
“The main issue is response time, or that a particular service ticket wasn’t closed quick enough. So now, we encourage each member of staff in their teams to solve the ticket as quickly and as well as they can.
“If they do this well, the whole team is rewarded at the end of the month. It has helped our efficiency and people now check on each other to see if their colleagues are solving tickets well,” says Tony.
The challenges ahead
With competitors challenging on price and service elsewhere, for Tony the most important thing to offer is excellent customer service, to show that Switch MSP are worth staying with.
“There are (IT support) tasks that are being automated or taken away from engineers and agents, so we need to show we have something more we can offer,” says Tony.
“And SmileBack can help there, as it shows we are committed to customer service. It helps us prove we are as good as we say we are right away.”
But for Tony, simply hitting their targets of 90 Net CSAT Score every month is not enough.
“I want us to be better,” says Tony. “SmileBack helps us to do that.”