Doing business with any U.S. government agency can be a daunting task. For example, in the case of customers new to EXIM Bank, there are application forms to complete, rules to understand, processes to navigate and conditions that have to be met in order to work with our agency. What our staff considers an “everyday” transaction can be overwhelming for a new customer!
But EXIM has a big goal, as outlined in ExIm Bank Strategic Plan 2010-2015, to improve the ease of doing business for customers. And, we are serious about hearing from our customers on what “ease of doing business” looks like, through their eyes.
Cultivating the Customer View
Earlier this year, in a repeat of survey activities from last year, we worked with a third-party contractor to survey 2,255 U.S. exporters who use EXIM’s export credit insurance—an insurance policy that, among other things, protects the U.S. exporter against nonpayment by an international buyer. This was our largest survey pool yet from a high volume customer segment at our agency. See the summary report. The response rates were terrific. We were elated to see that:
- More customers said EXIM helped them to expand exports, had a positive impact on employment and helped them to realize more export opportunities.
- Customer effort scores improved—which means we’re making progress on our goal to improve the ease of doing business.
- Overall customer satisfaction scores improved.
- More customers this year said they would recommend us to another exporter.
The Scores Are In: Now What?
You may be wondering how EXIM actually used customer feedback to improve. Customer feedback helped to validate, and sometimes redirect, our efforts to improve our systems, communication practices and business processes. For example, over the past few years, customer feedback helped to shape key initiatives such as:
- A new customer contact center.
- Developing standard internal and external communication procedures for significant changes to Bank programs.
- Innovative, improvisational-style customer service skills training for staff.
- Improving the features of EXIM Online, our customer service platform.
We hope our customers, intermediaries and stakeholders will continue sharing with us their ideas on how EXIM can improve the ease of doing business. To the hundreds of U.S. small business exporters who took our survey, we thank you for your time. We are committed to listening, and will continue working on ways to improve your experiences as customers of EXIM Bank.
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