We just announced the winners of Forrester’s 2011 Voice Of The Customer Awards at our Customer Experience Forum this afternoon. We received more than 40 nominations, and the nominees really upped their games again this year — another sign that voice of the customer (VoC) programs are rapidly maturing.

To evaluate the submissions, each of our four judges graded each nomination based on five criteria: clarity of approach, impact on customers’ experiences, impact on business performance, degree of innovation, and lessons provided for other firms. The nominees with the 10 best scores were named finalists. The top three scorers were named winners.

And here are the results . . .

The 10 finalists (in alphabetical order) are:

Adobe Systems







Pitney Bowes



The three winners (also in alphabetical order) are:

Adobe. The software provider stood out with its comprehensive approach and focus on executive engagement. In addition to other activities, the firm created a Customer Immersion Program where executives step into customers’ shoes for a day, attempt relevant customer scenarios, discuss opportunities for improvement with frontline employees, and engage with actual customers. This effort brings customer and employee experiences to life and keeps executives connected with the on-the-ground reality of Adobe’s business.

Fidelity. The investment firm stood out with its ability to clearly tie VoC activities to large-scale business results. By focusing on “Moments that Matter” to retail customers, the company has been able to improve its business performance and maintain its focus on customer experience. For example, Fidelity spotted customer irritation around account authentication, discussed the issue with frontline employees to understand root causes and potential solutions, and quickly launched a technology enhancement to make authentication easier — ultimately resulting in happier customers and reduced service costs.

JetBlue. The airline stood out with its success in improving customers’ experiences at an operational level. With a VoC team mining structured and unstructured feedback, uncovering customer pain points for particular flights, and communicating findings to frontline employees, the firm has driven dozens of specific experience improvements and achieved huge gains in its Net Promoter Scores. JetBlue has even used its VoC findings to make the case for changes to airport signage and TSA staffing levels, improving experiences that aren’t actually delivered by the airline. 

Thank you to my fellow judges: Victoria Bough, Harley Manning, and, our guest judge, 1to1 Media’s Ginger Conlon. Thank you to all of the organizations that participated in the process. And congratulations to the finalists and winners!

For more information about Forrester’s annual Voice Of The Customer Awards, please visit: www.forrester.com/VoC_main.