The Net Promoter System's outer loop creates confidence that the company's priorities support customer centricity—and that leadership is putting its money where its mouth is.
The outer loop's explicit purpose is to prioritize and support the kind of customer-friendly changes that employees and teams can’t make on their own. It does this by making sure information (from customer feedback or the broader organization) is captured and routed to the appropriate decision-makers and performers—often through elevation from the huddle.
It offers the opportunity to prioritize and invest in changes that will improve products, processes, policies, and other elements of the business that are beyond frontline employee control. It serves an implicit purpose as well; an effective outer loop makes employees feel supported. It gives them a voice in the firm's priorities. It creates confidence that the company's priorities support customer centricity—and that leadership is putting its money where its mouth is.
An outer loop must employ a rigorous, well-defined, and transparent process for addressing issues or opportunities elevated from across the organization.
A team—often led by a customer advocacy office, or CAO—gathers input from a variety of sources. That team helps triage the elevations and route them to the right parts of the organization that can decide to take action. The assigned team then investigates root causes, develops solutions, and decides how to prioritize these solutions vs. all other initiatives before taking action.
Throughout the process, the CAO makes sure that both customers and employees are informed about progress whenever doing so is relevant or required.