Let’s set the scene: there’s the crunch of gravel under your work boots, the smell of saw dust in the air and…

Wait, wrong scene.

Last time we chatted client experience, ahem, Schaefer Experience, was nearly a year ago. We shared the status of our client experience journey and asked for your feedback. Well, we’re back and ready to share what we’ve been doing since then.

If you want the full story, you can read last year’s post, Part I, here. It’s where we first shared our six foundational terms:

Inspire. Respond. Prioritize. Engage. Prepare. Collaborate.

As a refresher, we analyzed the data some of our clients so graciously shared with us to determine these six words to be our rallying cries in our resolution to enhance our client experience efforts. These six actions are meant to guide our team members as they tackle day-to-day life at Schaefer.

Then what happened? How did continue to improve our Schaefer Experience? Keep reading, we’ll catch you up.

Determining our Net Promoter Score (NPS)

Like we mentioned above, when we sent out Part I’s blog post in 2022, we also asked all of you to take 10-minutes to give us just a little more feedback. That survey, and thanks to the data-crunching-research-gurus at MarketVision again, resulted in our first net promoter score + an understanding of how we’re performing against our client foundations.

We’ll be honest. While we’re pretty stoked about what the data told us, we’re a firm that believes in continuous improvement, and we’re more than ready to inspire our team to strive to be better (see that use of inspire?). According to those who responded, we’re:

  • In the top percentile for a new promoter score
  • Above industry average for amount of client promoters (vs. passives + detractors)
  • We have strengths + opportunities in all of our six foundational terms, but were overall the strongest in collaborate, prioritize, respond, engage + inspire
  • We saw the biggest opportunity in prepare and are already taking action with specific trainings

What are we doing with this information? Our current score becomes our baseline. The true test is when we compare future NPS scores to our baseline score which we plan to do on a bi-annual basis (look for a new survey link coming in 2024!). Why bi-annually? Besides not wanting to contribute to survey fatigue, it also gives us time to implement (what we believe to be) enhanced processes so that we can correlate our new NPS results to our actions.

There is no goal NPS score for us. Instead, our goal is to maintain a top tier score.

Most importantly, we appreciate each + every one of you who completed the survey. We couldn’t do it without your honest feedback. Thank you!

Continuing internal client experience training

Did you know that we host an annual SMART Conference? All of our team members meet up at our Cincinnati, Ohio headquarters for two days full of education, collaboration + (dare we say it?) fun. In October 2022, the Schaefer Experience team facilitated an 80-minute working session with all Schaefer team members.

Here’s what we did:

We divided our team members into six groups – one for each of our client foundations

We asked six managers to speak about one client foundation addressing:

  • How the client foundation shows up for them
  • How each person approaches the foundation – it gave us different perspectives
  • How all of our individual actions + behaviors affect our overall client experience

We had six additional managers facilitate a 10-minute conversation among their group members

The feedback was very positive – our tenured Schaefer team members had the opportunity to talk about their experiences + our young team members had a safe space to be curious about their impact on a positive client experience.

Keeping client experience a priority

The Schaefer Experience Team has been meeting with our managers to study + interpret the data from our NPS survey. We have + continue to ask the following questions:

  • What have we learned from the feedback?
  • What have we confirmed from the feedback?
  • How do we activate the pertinent feedback?

We’ll continue the conversation with a variety of events + collateral that keep our client foundations top-of-mind like:

Applying a client experience lens to policy, procedure + strategic plan initiative execution

  • The Schaefer Experience Team is actively involved in policy + procedure drafting so that client experience is always at the forefront of our initiatives. Most recently, we were involved in revisiting our phone policies + procedures.

Keeping our foundational terms top of mind

  • Sometimes it’s all about location, location, location. We redesigned one of our heaviest-used internal collateral, our calc pads, to highlight our foundational terms. Next time you’re in a meeting with a Schaefer team member, take a peek at their notebook to see it!

Onboarding new team members

  • The Schaefer Experience is now part of the onboarding process for every team member.

Cultivating engaged client experienced leaders

  • We’ve received a lot of internal interest in contributing to the initiative. We’re excited to tap into their fresh ideas + perspectives.


  • We’ll have another SMART Conference presentation, this time from Melissa Marshall with Present Your Science. After the keynote, our team will host a working session to apply what we learned.
  • The Schaefer Experience is a regular part of our quarterly client management forums (we find it to be an effective forum even though good client experience applies to all, not just our client managers).

Reaching out to you

  • Do you have questions or comments about our client experience journey? We’d love to chat!

Schaefer continues to put the client experience at the forefront – it’s one of five pillars of our strategic plan. We appreciate every response we’ve received from our A/E/C partners and look forward to continued feedback. We can’t wait to hear from you + share our progress next year!



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