September 2009

It's All About Performance

We help improve our clients’ performance every day. By focusing your organisation on your customers and their needs, your customer satisfaction and loyalty will increase, providing cost savings and increased revenue. Increased performance means increased satisfaction.

We maintain a strong customer focus within our own organisation, so that we can provide you with the best service. In order to maintain our high standards we have recently expanded our teamwith four new staff: Vipin - Reporting Manager, Julian - Data Analyst, and Simren and Janina - Trainee Project Officers.
If you’d like to know how well you’re performing, call us on 1800 358 081.

Paul van Veenendaal

We want to be a Customer Centric organisation, but how do we get there?

This is a question often asked when organisations see the necessity of being organised around customer needs, rather than the historic way they have evolved, which tends to be around processes.

If management asks you how well your IVR performs, what can you say?

By Barry Daniel, Principal Consultant, Barry Daniel & Associates
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems are generally wonderfully reliable, chugging away processing huge volumes of routine transactions in call centre related environments.
But how do you know whether your IVR performs really well?

  1. University of    Queensland
  2. University of Adelaide
  3. Flinders University
  4. Coliban Water
  5. Plan Australia
  6. University of New South Wales
  7. ActewAGL Retail
  8. OXFAM
  9. Sydney Water Waterfix
  10. University of Western Sydney

Back to top

July 2009

Improve Customer Service and Drive your Business Results

We help our clients to understand, measure and improve their customer service, with the ultimate aim of reducing the cost and increasing the revenue associated with customer management.

We recently assisted one of our clients who had been measuring their call centre results but was unsure of what the metrics really meant to their business. We helped them to tie their financial results to customer satisfaction and employee performance. We achieved this through ensuring that the right customer and employee satisfaction data was being collected, including call monitoring, customer survey results and daily metrics. We then utilised our extensive analysis tools to track and predict the success of business and marketing efforts.
At the business level this resulted in reduced call handling times, increased employee efficiency, and increased sales close rates in their customer call centres. These results dramatically impacted on brand loyalty, marketing campaign success and their bottom line.

If you would like us to help you achieve great customer service results that positively impact your bottom line, call us on 1800 358 081.
Paul van Veenendaal

Dial F For Frustration at Service

Karen Collier | Herald Sun 20 June 2009

MOBILE phone companies, airlines and banks have been exposed as the worst at answering queries in a secret survey of industries.

But charities scrounging for dollars in the contracting economy turned on the charm and rated best, according to the research.
Angry customers are waiting in phone queues for up to an hour as customer service is put on hold, while rude operators have been accused of mocking accents, interrupting callers and bamboozling them with confusing language.

Customer Service Benchmarking Australia managing director Paul van Veenendaal estimates Australians waste 20 million hours a year on hold.

What is critical to the Bank is making sure that our vision is translated into action and performance. The work carried out by CSBA allows us to really test, on a continuous and independent basis, how the vision is translated both across the channel and across centres. We then use the CSBA information to train and coach our contact centre teams. This work has had significant impact on our ability to improve performance.“

Customer Service
Manager, Bank

Gain strategic advantage through customer service benchmarking
The Fund Executives Association Limited (FEAL) is at the forefront of a new customer satisfaction benchmarking survey for Australian superannuation funds that provides a true customer focus for the industry. One of the world's leading experts on brand management, Professor Mark Ritson, says "While most fund executives grasp the importance of member satisfaction, the reality is that maintaining true member focus presents a difficult challenge”.

Back to top

May 2009

Charity Organisations Show the Way

There are no simple solutions to explain why some industries and some companies deliver exceptional customer service and others consistently fail in this important area.

In our latest quarterly survey Customer Service Benchmarking Australia (CSBA) made over four thousand telephone calls to companies in fifteen industry groups throughout the nation.

The best performing industry in terms of overall customer service was the sector comprising Aid Organisations. Within that sector Plan Australia was the best-performing of those surveyed.

One could argue that it is because these organisations are relatively small (as is the sector) and likely to be hit by people stopping donating in times of financial crisis that they simply have to do their very best in terms of performance.

At the other end of the performance scale in the same survey were the Telco and Airline sectors. Both sectors are traditionally dominated by large, complex organisations that clearly do not deliver high levels of customer service.

One strategy in hard economic times appears to be to offer discounts rather than customer service: CSBA argues that delivery of both would be more effective.

For more information about how to understand, measure and improve your customer service call CSBA on 03 9605 4900.

Kind regards,
Paul van Veenendaal
Managing Director


At the annual ATEM conference in Perth the University of Western Sydney has won the much coveted prize for Excellence in Telephone Customer Service. The award is presented annually by Customer Service Benchmarking Australia.

Quarterly Benchmarking

CSBA measures the level of customer service delivered by customer service agents at major organisations across Australia.

Each Quarter CSBA’s team of trained mystery shoppers make more than 4,000 telephone calls to over 150 companies. The agents are asked a general question about the company’s product or service, and then,using CSBA’s unique model,given a rating based on their customer service delivery. This model has been built up over 12 years of analysis and research.

These customer service agents are usually the first point of contact for current and potential customers to most businesses.

The importance of that first point of contact cannot be exaggerated. Positive or negative, the first impression endures for a long time.

Top Ten
Customer Service
Providers for this Quarter

  1. University of Western Sydney
  2. GWM Water
  3. Sydney Water WaterFix
  4. Gippsland Water
  5. Aurora Energy Business
  6. AAMI
  7. ActewAGL Retail
  8. Flinders University
  9. Wannon Water
  10. Plan Australia

Q3 Industry Rankings

  1. Aid Industry
  2. Water Tertiary
  3. Education
  4. Local Government
  5. Insurance
  6. Electricity
  7. Managed Funds
  8. Banks General
  9. Parcel Delivery
  10. Gas
  11. RSPCA
  12. Internet Service Providers
  13. Banks - Home Loans
  14. Airlines
  15. Telcos

Back to top

March 2009

Welcome to the March edition of our newsletter.  At CSBA it has been a busy start to the year, we have experienced some internal changes and are involved in some exciting projects.  We have some articles that we hope will help you continue to improve the service experience from your organisation.

Kind regards,

Paul van Veenendaal
Managing Director


One of the biggest issues with contact centres is making sure that the customer service experience is consistently the best. Internal quality assurance programs are fine but in today’s world you cannot let one call be a poor experience. Find out how a number of CSBA customers are tackling this big issue.


Tertiary institutions are often daunted by the prospect of developing and implementing a customer service improvement program, especially when they have no guiding framework to work from. CSBA has designed a program that has been specifically tailored to help the tertiary sector improve their customer service. To hear how we can help you meet your customer service needs.


CSBA introduces our latest staff members, ensuring we are primed to meet the growing demand for our services. Learn how the addition of Richard, Miguel, Felicity and Estephanie will ensure CSBA continues to provide leading edge skills to deliver superior customer service for our clients and their organisations.

At CSBA we are passionate about customer service, yours and ours! In each newsletter we look at ways in which organisations can understand, measure and improve their customer service. If you are interested in talking to us about any of the services we offer and describe in the attached, please call or contact us to A key product is our unique methodology for monitoring the performance of contact centres using mystery shopping and we regularly measure and benchmark more than 150 Australian companies using this technique.

For more information on the CSBA Quarterly Benchmark Survey, the articles and other services offered by CSBA, please contact:

Paul van Veenendaal
Ph: 03 9605 4900

Back to top

January 2009

Welcome to the first newsletter for the year. I hope 2009 proves to be a good one for you and your teams.

The last year has been an interesting one at CSBA.

In the last year we have seen a number of strategies to improve the Customer Service Experience. Three of the more successful strategies used to improve customer service are:

  1. Using the mystery shopping to drive customer service commitment across the organisation. In some companies we are assessing over 40 different lines with great results in terms of company acceptance of a customer service culture;
  2. Using customer satisfaction surveys to drive business improvement initiatives. Through providing timely feedback about customer service performance, organisations learn from their customers new ways to improve the overall customer service experience; and
  3. Using the mystery shopping assessment to measure the performance consitancy of key attributes like ‘product knowledge’ or ‘clear resolution’. It is becoming apparent that the more consistent the experience is the more confident the customer is with the organisation's service or product offering.

In the mean time, I hope you enjoy the rest of our newsletter and if you would like to know more about these topics please feel free to call or drop me an email.

Kind regards,
Paul van Veenendaal
Managing Director

Water Sector Needs to go with the Customer Flow

As more and more attention is given to sensitive water issues, players in the water sector need to focus on the changing needs of customers and put in place appropriate benchmarking strategies to deliver business outcomes, according to water industry expert Pat McCafferty, General Manager, Strategy and Communications at Yarra Valley Water.

How a great call can make your day
I used to have lunch with a friend in the city. We’d meet outside the large call-centre he worked in at the time. And when I say large, I mean aircraft-hangar proportions.

Results of the Latest CSBA Quarterly Benchmarking Survey

Top Ten Customer Service Providers for this Quarter September - December are:

  1. The University of Adelaide
  2. University of Western Sydney
  3. AAMI
  4. GWM Water
  5. Gippsland Water
  6. City of Sydney
  7. Geelong Contact Centre
  8. City of Yarra
  9. DHL
  10. ActewAGL Retail


Well done to these companies for demonstrating enthusiasm and dedication to providing great customer service!

Upcoming Events

Changing Expectations: the 2009 Student Service Centres Conference, 22-24 April 2009 in Fremantle WA. Further information HERE

A key product is our unique methodology for monitoring the performance of contact centres using mystery shopping and we regularly measure and benchmark more than 150 Australian companies using this technique.

Back to top

November 2008

CSBA is a research-based consulting group committed to helping our clients understand, measure and improve their customer service across all touchpoints of an organisation.

A key product is our unique methodology for monitoring the performance of contact centres using mystery shopping and we regularly measure and benchmark more than 150 Australian companies using this technique.

Time to Complain About Complaints

A recent survey conducted by CSBA shows Australia’s industry sectors fall well short of benchmarks in customer complaint handling.
Council Keeps Geelong Satisfied

The City of Greater Geelong (CoGG) Council believes that good governance is the key to a satisfied and confident community, and that an organisation provides good governance through community satisfaction.  CSBA has been working with the CoGG to ensure the Council delivers on its promise to provide all its residents with efficient and responsive service and excellence.

Tasmanian Contact Centre Update – ½ Day Seminars – 26 and 27 November 2008

CSBA, in conjunction with the Tasmanian Department of Economic Development & Tourism and NEC, are holding their third annual update on what’s happening in the Contact Centre industry in Tasmania. Dates are: 26 November in Hobart and 27 November in Launceston.

Perth Complaint Management Workshop – 4 December2008

CSBA, in conjunction with Benchmarking Partnerships, are holding a one day best practice workshop on complaint management in Perth. The program includes two case studies and guest speakers from the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) and Energy & Water Ombudsman (Victoria) (EWOV).

Results of the Latest CSBA Quarterly Benchmarking Survey

Top Ten Customer Service Providers for this Quarter
The top ten companies for the July - September quarter for overall performance are:

  1. Sydney Water WaterFix
  2. Provident
  3. Bendigo Bank Insurance
  4. Darebin City Council
  5. University of Western Sydney
  6. Adelaide University
  7. Auckland City Council
  8. Geelong Contact Centre
  9. Brisbane City Council
  10. Flinders University

Well done to these companies for demonstrating enthusiasm and dedication to providing great customer service!

Back to top
1 2 3 4