A VOC Case Study:
Growing a New Acquisition with Customer Feedback
Norwest Equity Partners (NEP): A middle market investment firm managing $5 billion in capital
NEP recently added a manufacturing company to their portfolio. Shortly after the deal was closed and new management was in place, the business embarked on an initiative to define a five-year strategic plan for profitable business growth. However, the challenge was that limited information existed on how the business was performing present-day.
Strategex was utilized as a third party to conduct a customer survey with the business’s top 50 accounts. The results were sobering. Some customers were delighted, while others were on the verge of leaving. Issues surfaced on several fronts. Lead times on filling orders were too long. Deliveries were often delayed. More importantly, customer service was poor. The basics—responding to requests and keeping customers informed of changes—were not standard procedure.
The net effect was an NPS® of 15%: a marginal score, reflecting a business with significant room to improve. Additionally, the results predicted that upside revenue growth was likely if fundamental business issues were addressed.
Value of the Process
Management used this data to define a clear mandate for change across the organization. Employee meetings were held. Action plans were created. Customers were updated on the business’s strategy to improve.
Looking out over the remainder of NEP’s ownership period, the upside potential is sizeable. With a current NPS® of 15%, an improvement of 15-20 points will predictably bring new business wins and accelerated growth. Consistent improvements can, over the course of five years, potentially double or triple growth compared with the purchase period. As growth increases, so does the value of the company.
Andy Cantwell, Principal at NEP, commented: “The VOC work allowed us to take a deep, hard look at ourselves through the eyes of the customer as we began to develop the strategic roadmap for the company and our investment. The VOC is an incredible tool for making a fact-based assessment of the current state of the company and determining the proper launching points for designing a strategy for value creation.”