The Windows Home Server team was cited as an example in a recently released whitepaper titled, “How Microsoft listens and responds to customers
”. The Customer and Partner Experience site
provides an overview of Microsoft’s company-wide system of measuring our efforts to encourage strong customer focus from senior executives down through the entire employee base.  An excerpt from the whitepaper is below.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------- Microsoft Connect: A Product Feedback Community
When it comes to understanding how Microsoft products perform in real-world situations and identifying ways that we can improve our products, there’s no better barometer than immediate feedback from customers and partners. To enable this, we have consolidated many of our listening systems into Microsoft Connect
, a centralized feedback platform for product teams that enables customers and partners to interact directly with Microsoft developers and product managers.
The Microsoft Connect Web site (http://connect.microsoft.com
) has more than 1.4 million registered users, averages over 1 million visits per month, and has delivered more than 8.5 million downloads of applications and documents. Virtually every major business group in the company has a presence on Microsoft Connect, with more than 1,900 programs—including betas, Technical Adoption Programs and Customer Advisory Councils—currently hosted on the site.
For example, the Windows Home Server team’s Connect programs have been instrumental in helping developers improve the product. “We’re constantly using Connect to answer questions, discover technical bugs and get the right feedback into our system,” says Jonas Svensson, Windows Home Server community program manager. “Connect helps us engage with a vibrant community of users on an ongoing basis. We provide them with access to early versions of Windows Home Server. In return, Connect participants submit suggestions on how to improve the product, which gets timely feedback into our system.”
Svensson’s team recently released the Power Pack 3 beta for Windows Home Server through Connect. The Power Pack is an update that provides fixes for known issues and adds new features to improve the functionality of Windows Home Server, including enhancements for Windows 7–based computers. “Connect has allowed us to get this important update into the hands of tens of thousands of users who can thoroughly test it out and report back on their experience,” says Svensson. “We deliver much-anticipated product functionality, and our users are helping ensure great integration with Windows 7 at the time of release.” More...