Every year, we at Snom ask our partners to complete an online survey with questions covering
- Products (software & hardware)
- The future of business telephony
Once the fielding phase of the survey is completed, analysis of the data begins. A detailed evaluation of all of the ratings, rankings and open comments is made. We compare the data on a regional basis, according to the partner type (service provider, value added reseller, distributor, etc.) and also compare the latest results to previous years.
Why do we do a partner survey?
Well, the obvious answer is that if we don’t know what our channel partners think about us, how can we give them what they want? A better question might be “how can a manufacturer not ask its customers what they think?”
How do we know the results are reliable?
Anyone who has ever participated in an online survey knows that a number of factors can affect how it is completed:
Time: responses are less likely to be considered or accurate if the participant is fighting against the clock on a normal working day
Commitment: does the respondent have a stake in the results? What do they stand to gain when completing the survey?
Relevance: do the survey questions relate to the respondents’ real interactions with Snom?
Finding time is a daily challenge faced by everyone. Throughout a working day, prioritizing tasks is a tricky balance between short and long term objectives. So this is where the factors relevance and commitment combine to help the respondent understand the value of participating. If the survey asks the relevant questions, and the respondent feels that key issues can be addressed by providing feedback, then commitment will increase.
Snom has fine-tuned the survey over the last ten years to ensure its relevance and we have seen a growing number of participants, year-on-year, to know that we must be doing something right.
On a scale of 0-10, how do we analyze the data?
Using in-house expertise, we have developed a tried and tested methodology to identify key performance indicators and precisely what needs to be done to improve them.
The last twelve months have been particularly challenging, so it was with an even greater sense of anticipation than usual as we waited for the results to come in!
And for 2020, despite a slightly delayed start to the survey, we were very pleased to see that despite a number of unexpected challenges, we were able to maintain our high standards. Nevertheless, there is always room for improvement and once we have completed our assessment we will be implementing new measures to ensure that our partners’ wishes are met!
Early warning system
As well as helping Snom to identify those areas where we can most effectively make improvements, we can also quickly identify where potentially mission-critical problems are appearing, by partner type or country and take quick action to correct them.
Just one piece of the puzzle
The Snom partner survey is just one part of our initiative to continually evolve and innovate. Regular design thinking workshops, a master class, employee surveys and a culture of innovation running through the entire company have been introduced in recent years to focus our energy and encourage new ideas.
What does the future hold for the business phone?
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, one of the areas we look at in the survey is the future of business telephony. As an example of the kind of data we uncover, here is an insight into some of our findings in this field.
Unexpected trends can develop, especially during unpredictable times. We have followed with keen interest the attitude of our channel partners towards technological changes. Interestingly, the perceived value of something as familiar as a desk phone has fallen and risen again in the course of the last three years (see chart above).
Curiously, we have seen an overall increase in the number of Snom partners who believe the business desk phone still has a future, despite the proliferation of headsets, conferencing and mobile solutions available to increasingly flexible workers. A quick glance at the open comments received for this question provides us with a deeper insight:
“So much easier to use than a softphone. And a desk phone doesn’t shut down when you switch off your PC.” (Reseller, Austria)
“Old habits die hard. Even in the home office, people like to have a receiver in the hand.” (Service provider, Italy)
“We’ve seen the trend going in the other direction. In the last twelve months there has been an increase in demand for desk phones. Some like to use them in tandem with a headset. Others prefer a dedicated office device.” (Reseller, UK)
The world is full of surprises, and the fast-moving world of business communications is no exception.
We look forward to finding out in next year’s survey if we managed to meet this year’s expectations!
If you have any questions about the Snom Partner Survey, please contact email@example.com