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Case Study – Departed Client Analysis:

When the Analysis of an Objective Party Produces More Reliable Insights

Anova Client

International Human Capital Management Company

The Situation

Anova’s client was a recognized market leader, but its client base was experiencing a high degree of churn and the reasons for this attrition were not clear.  Its client service staff was conducting outreach with former clients in an attempt to shed light on the matter, but these efforts were neither consistent nor sustained, and the results being generated were unreliable.  Among other factors, the company’s internal staff identified fees and uncompetitive product pricing as the primary cause of most client departures and suggested that service deficiencies only contributed to 10 percent of client departures.

The Response

Anova was engaged to conduct a “Departed Client Analysis” survey.  Our task was to obtain dependable and unbiased feedback and insight from the company’s former clients and to offer interpretive analysis to our client.  As an independent and objective third party, we spoke at length by phone with 100 of the company’s recently departed clients.  To senior management’s surprise, and contrary to the results produced by the company’s internal outreach efforts, we learned that fees and product pricing were not its primary challenges.  In fact, pricing was a distant fourth on the list of problems.  The number one reason clients were leaving was because they were displeased with the quality of client service they had been receiving.  In fact, between 65 and 70 percent of the lost business could distinctly be attributed to client servicing issues – nearly seven times higher than the internal estimates.

The Outcome

Our client used the results of our “Departed Client Analysis” research to re-engineer its servicing systems and protocols, improving its technologies and processes around specific client pain points and upgrading its client communications and reporting efforts.  These changes helped to improve client retention.