The National Customer Service Survey (NCSS) is a consumer survey which gathers information about the quality of customer service at a number of large companies. Data is collected both to educate consumers about which companies offer superior service, and to help companies find ways to improve their service quality. The NCSS is sponsored by Vocal Laboratories Inc. Summary findings and statistics are published periodically and full survey data is available to Vocal Laboratories clients. You can find recently published public reports on our Published Research page.
Survey participation is limited to consumers who opt-in by taking both of these affirmative actions ("Opt-In Steps"): (1) Calling a special Vocalabs' phone number instead of calling the company directly; and (2) Answering survey questions when a contacted by a Vocalabs' interviewer.
Data We Collect
For people who perform both Opt-In Steps #1 and #2, we collect the following information:
- A phone number to call for the survey
- The date, time, and length of the original customer service call
- Answers to survey questions
- A recording of the interview call, and any failed interview attempts
We do not retain a recording of the original customer service call.
How We Use the Data We Collect
Vocalabs uses data we collect as part of the NCSS in the following ways:
- To call people who agreed to participate in the survey, in order to ask survey questions. We may make more than one attempt to reach someone.
- To ensure that the same person is not selected to participate more than once in a given time period.
- To monitor the performance of Vocalabs' internal processes, including Quality Assurance reviews of interviewers.
- To educate and inform the general public about issues of customer service quality, as described under "How We Distribute the Data We Collect"
- To inform companies about the performance of their customer service and the customer service of other companies, as described under "How We Distribute the Data We Collect"
Data collected as part of NCSS is not used by Vocalabs for marketing or sales to individual survey participants, nor is any data provided to third parties for purposes of marketing or sales to individual survey participants.
How We Distribute the Data We Collect
Data Provided to Other Companies
Vocalabs provides de-identified data on all survey responses to other companies, for purposes of analyzing the performance of their customer service and the performance of other companies' customer service. The data provided includes answers to survey questions and the date, time, and length of the original customer service call, as well as statistical summaries and analysis. Before this data is provided to a third party, we de-identify it by removing any fields we believe would allow a third party to identify the survey participant, including the participant's phone number.
Exception to De-Identification: In some cases we may provide personally identifying information about a survey participant to the company which the survey is about. We may provide this information when: (a) a company has subscribed to survey data about its own customers; (b) when the customer has requested that we provide the information to the company (for example, in order to help resolve a customer service problem); or (c) we are legally required to provide the information.
Data Provided to the General Public
Vocalabs uses data collected in the NCSS to educate and inform consumers about customer service quality. For this purpose, survey data is released to the general public. This will usually take the form of summary statistics and analysis. Vocalabs will not release any personally identifying information or call recordings to the general public without the explicit permission of the survey participant.
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