Customer flow is often confused with queue management; as a whole, the two go hand in hand however, customer flow is a quality improvement process of reducing wait time and increasing customer satisfaction. In order to assess, measure and improve customer flow the collecting data is a necessary step. Customer flow is vital to deploying any successful queue management process. Customer flow is an invaluable tool that is desperately needed for service orientated businesses to grow and thrive. How exactly your company enhances the customer flow is largely based on the technique which will best suit your specific needs such assessing customer volume, physical space, time and duration and data collection. There are various techniques at your disposal to use while gathering data.
As a growing business, it is of the utmost importance you identify key demographic of consumers in order to best determine the proper queue management systems. Demographic characteristic will assist you in determining if you need a take a ticket system for example, or a virtual queue management system such as QueueMobile.com for example. Evaluating customer flow data can provide you with the number of customers passing through each and every day, what ethnicity they are, how old they are, what sex they are, socio-economic status. Furthermore you want to collect average wait times and peak wait times through the day.
Some of the ways a business can collect the data required include an manual time study, closed circuit televisions, customer surveys and even personnel monitoring. Although one form may provide clearer and more concise data, each technique has its own benefits. For example, closed circuit television provides an absolutely clear picture as to your customers wait times, their ethnicity, and what sex they are. As a customer flow manager, you can even view tapes from the past at any given time to determine whether your sales have increased within a particular demographic. While closed circuit television cannot provide certain data such as age or the reasoning behind a customer choosing your business over another, the other customer flow techniques can. An example of this would be a customer survey in which a company representative surveys customers about their perceived wait time, overall satisfaction and to solicit customer feedback. Depending on your companies specific needs, it is best to determine the most effective means in which to collect the data and shortly thereafter, implement the proper queue management system in order help your business grow.
Customer flow and data collection are not exact sciences; just because your data suggests one thing, does not mean it will be one hundred percent accurate. In a lot of instances, data collection is used more as a guideline in which to develop a queue management system. Continuous quality improvement is a must to assure you are providing the best customer flow. We recommend your queue management system provide rich data sets and reporting to maintain the highest customer satisfaction possible. Customer flow solutions such as Student Q for higher education and QueueMobile for all other business are two great examples.
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