Hold the phone: Why Bell needs to listen to customers and employees

Keatext's text and sentiment analysis of customer and employee reviews reveals the truth about Bell customer satisfaction.

bell customer satisfaction

Illustration by Paul Watson.

When an organization knows how both its customers and its employees are feeling, it can gain greater insight into its CX strategies and into how the company operates as a whole. By analyzing customer and employee review data on one massive Canada telecommunications company—Bell—Keatext shows not only what customers and employees think about Bell, but how insights on this data are clearly tied to an organization’s ability to take action on these insights, from creating successful customer experience strategy to streamlining organizational changes.

A happier workforce has been linked to companies’ ability to deliver better customer satisfaction, while a 5% increase in employee engagement has been shown to lead to a 3% jump in revenue. Companies that invest in employee experience outperform those who don’t and are four times as profitable, while leaders in those organizations say that not only are their employees happier but their companies have measured gains in their talent pipelines and productivity. As with analyzing unsolicited feedback from customers, such as product reviews, analyzing employee feedback from non-partisan sources, such as job search websites, provides companies with invaluable insights.

To discover what both employees and customers really have to say about Bell, Keatext analyzed:

1,698 employee reviews:

  • 7,592 statements
  • From Indeed.ca
  • Between 2012 and 2019

834 client reviews:

  • featuring 2,796 comments
  • 3,501 statements
  • From websites Consumer Affairs and Better Business Bureau
  • Between 2011 and 2019

Keatext’s team analyzed this incredible amount of publicly available customer and employee feedback from review sites where customers and employees feel free to speak colloquially and candidly. Applied to voice of customer and voice of employee programs or other CX initiatives, the insights from this data analysis represent an invaluable resource for crafting dynamic CX and EE strategies. Read on to see what Keatext discovered in the data.

What employee feedback shows about Bell customer satisfaction

In analyzing 1,689 Bell employee reviews from Indeed.ca, Keatext’s AI-powered text analytics identified the main topics, praises (positive sentiments), problems (negative sentiments) and suggestions from employees. Positive, negative or neutral, all comments analyzed en masse are a good indication of company culture and have the potential to surface actionable insights for increasing employee satisfaction, attracting new employees and in-turn having a positive effect on a company.

A 2001 Gallup study found that unhappy employees can cost business between $450 and $550 billion every year. Keeping employees happy is paramount to a successful company, and the situation at Bell looks promising:

  • Over 65% of the employees who posted on Indeed gave Bell as 4 to 5 star rating.
  • Out of the 3,720 comments, the sentiment was overwhelmingly positive with 2,460 praises and 1,124 problems. There were also 93 suggestions and 43 questions.
  • A peak in negative sentiment came in January of 2014, explained by commenters as due to a lack of quality managers and poor training provided to sales reps who in-turn advised clients badly, leading to a negative effect on customer satisfaction.
  • Top topics overall were: Service, Toronto, Training, People, Job, Environment, Bell, Work, Tech Support, Call

Keatext examined what led to dissatisfaction in employees who rate the company highly and also dug deeper into the topics of Environment, Money and Promotion.

Issues raised by satisfied employees

The greatest source of dissatisfaction from employees who rated the company highly was dealing with difficult customers.

The greatest source of dissatisfaction from employees who rated the company highly was dealing with difficult customers. However, many indicated that there is also a sense of satisfaction in turning an angry customer into a happy customer. Employees found the hours long and the work intense and felt that they could use better training. Suggestions indicated there are some issues with middle management but no specifics are given.

Topic: Environment 

The environment at Bell was highly praised with 192 praises and 17 problems. Employees feel that they were working in a professional and enjoyable atmosphere, fast paced and dynamic, yet supportive. Only a small percentage of the reviewers indicated they found the environment stressful.

Topic: Money 

The topic of money had 51 praises and 22 problems. Many commenters were pleased with the pay and the benefits; they also appreciated the ethnic diversity of the team. Some said the starting pay was low. An employee of Household Loyalty felt the pay was good while you were on the phone but not sufficient when taken off phone duty.

Topic: Advancement and Promotion 

An area of concern for employees is the difficulty in career advancement. It is indicated that there is a very defined corporate ladder, and while there are lots of opportunities within the company, getting higher up the chain takes years.

What client reviews reveal about Bell customer satisfaction

In analyzing 834 reviews from the Consumer Affairs (697 reviews) and the Better Business Bureau (137 reviews) websites, Keatext’s AI-powered text analytics identified channel metrics, main topics, praises (positive sentiments), problems (negative sentiments) and suggestions from clients. The AI-powered tool also surfaced actionable insights to increase client satisfaction and brand loyalty.

Customer reviews have been steadily growing online, indicating that customers are increasingly expressing their experiences on numerous public forums. This data is publicly available and represents a wealth of customer insights that should be monitored and, with the right analysis tools, acted on. Unlike Bell’s employee comments, clients have fewer positive things to say about their experience with Bell:

  • Over 94% of commenters on Consumer Affairs gave Bell a 1 star rating.
  • Of the 2,796 comments, sentiment across both website channels skewed strongly negative with 2,119 problems and only 522 praises. There were also 77 suggestions and 76 questions.
  • Both positive and negative sentiment slowly increased over time, which is to be expected as the number of reviews increased.
  • There was a distinct peak in January 2015 due to a higher volume of customers complaining about erroneous charges and promotions not being respected, as well as long amounts of time being spent speaking to customer service reps who did not fully understand client issues.
  • Top topics include: Service, Bell, Phone, Internet Service, Bill, Price, Call, Tech Support, Credit and Canada

Looking at the data on these reviews, Keatext decided to take a deeper look at how clients discussed the topic of Tech Support.

Topic: Tech Support

The topic of tech support elicited 34 problems and 4 praises, with correlating opinions of Poor, Problem, Wrong, N’t Use, Could Not Care Less, Failure, Home, Keep Getting Passed Around, Mistaken, Never Manage.

Complaints revolved around technicians not showing up for appointments or arriving late.

Complaints revolved around technicians not showing up for appointments or arriving late. There is also the issue of technicians not being able to provide the service or what was sold. Clients recognize that this is not necessarily the fault of the technician and blame the company instead, as the following two comments outline:

  • “Bell signed us up for 50mbps service and have not been able to deliver it to us at any point. They also refuse to change the plan because we signed up for it and it allows them to take more money from us. We’ve had them out multiple times because they keep talking about being able to deliver the speed but every technician throws their hands up in frustration and they all say it just isn’t possible.”
  • “After months of complaints of lagging internet, constant loading and failed connect-to-server pop ups, Bell agreed to credit my account and remove the unlimited internet fee. This morning, at my insistence, after a new modem was sent and I set it up, a technician showed up stating that I could never receive Bell’s promised speeds due to the fact that my building is on an old copper phone line that was never updated. Technician also stated that everything they gave me is actually standard issue these days and I could verify that by looking at Bell’s website.”

How AI data analysis of reviews leads to actionable insights

Data analysis of customer and employee feedback can give companies valuable insights into customer behaviour at every touchpoint in the customer journey, while insights uncovered in employees’ candid commentary can lead to greater employee engagement.

As seen in the analysis of reviews on Bell, Keatext’s text analysis technology is able to draw out insights within the data, which can be used in CX strategy, employee satisfaction programs and other areas. Those insights also have the potential to illuminate the connection between employee engagement and customer experience, pinpointing where the two significantly affect each other and how both have an impact on day-to-day operations and overall revenue generation.

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