Your company evolves in a competitive industry, but cannot keep up with the pace of internal demands? Your support team is overwhelmed by a large number of operational queries and this negatively impacts your results, the quality of your services and most importantly, your customers’ satisfaction?
You do not recognize yourself yet? It’s definitely a good sign.
Okay, so a more practical side, is this a type of problem your experience every day?
- Poor tracking of tickets
- Undocumented requests; generating non-measurable information
- Inability to provide performance reports
- Inefficient allocation of each task
- Innefective communication between stakeholders
- Centralization of all incidents to a single resource
- Poor prioritization of activities
- You juggle an incredible amount of tasks and recurring manual operations
- In your home system, you find a variety of uncompleted requests
- Your customers are unhappy and you try to find a solution to get back on track
- Your resources use an unfit user-experience tool, even archaic
- Your resources do not want to know anything more about your software solutions and project
- The knowledge transfer concept is not part of your vocabulary
If that is the case, the next few lines could earn you big. Be aware of the potential for quality service and to optimize it is of great IT value, particularly in a delivery cycle of digitized services.
Help, my support team is on the brink of failure!
Of course, this is a figure of speech. Typically, IT support teams, serving internal users or external clients, have a colossal job. They rarely use the most appropriate tools to suit their needs and still try to satisfy their customers in different ways. Some will even use an Excel spreadsheet which is known to all. Others will develop an in-house software tool, arriving at their original objectives and after several hundred hours of work and endless complications, torn with the management’s vision and the operational ambitions of the service agents. Other companies will select a helpdesk tool that initially will be enough for them, but then lacks the flexibility to respond to the ever changing business needs. All in all, you try to keep your head above water while putting a patch on an ailment; that of an inefficient service.
Unfortunately, in many cases, this lack of efficiency causes significant organizational implications, starting with the level of customer satisfaction, increasing cost, declining business revenues and so on! Then how do you find the right cure for solving ticket management, queries and more broadly service management?
1. Define the ticket source
By identifying and defining clearly the different sources of the requests, it will be easier for your business to measure going forward and to know if you are well equipped to cope with the number and types of future queries. The types of demands are varied, from one context to another, from one industry to another, and it is necessary to plan this analysis.
2. Analyze your support service intensively
Beyond the input of different sources, the manager or the head of the support department should know their services. What is the approach of request management? What is your capacity to meet them? Your resources? Your tools?
And if a problem is palpable among the support staff, ask yourself the question: What is the pain? Or: What aspect of our service is suffering from inefficiency? It is also advisable to go back to the source: your customers. Is your relationship with your customers harmonious? Is the service you provide quick and meeting your customers’ expectations? You can go even further by asking yourself the same question regarding the expectations of the general organization and end users you serve.
3. Establish specific and organizational goals
If the internal analysis is important, the realization of the objectives is equally important. These goals can be translated in different ways, depending on the nature of your queries, your industry or business context. Here are a few musts, which can decline to:
- Overall reduction in costs or a specific process
- Increased business revenue due to greater customer loyalty, for example
- Increased satisfaction of a portion of your customers
- Reducing the learning curve through the development of a knowledge base, thus preventing the effects of staff turnover
- Increase internal efficiency
With these detailed numerical goals, you can make your teams – technical resources, managers and leaders of all levels, accountable for their choices and performance.
4. Choose a tool adapted to your reality
There is a great variety of choices and tools on the market. When choosing your query management tool, helpdesk or service desk, it is essential to evaluate the available products with discernment and objectivity, but above all, to evaluate them according to your needs. Do I need a self-service portal or a CMDB or simply a standard ticketing tool allowing my team to respond to incident-type tickets? Software solutions today offer multiple and varied features; it is important to rely on a tool representing the cure for your ailments; the one that can solve your daily problems.
Choose your helpdesk tool based on its development potential and your potential to use all of the software functionality. Making use of 20% of software, while paying for its entirety, does not make a lot of sense for an organization, unless it sees profits elsewhere. So, evaluate the budget allocated wisely and build on a maximum return on investment. To do this, it is up to the manager and his team to determine the picture before and after using performance indicators.
You can also compare the tools depending on your maturity and your ability to operationalize certain processes. In the end, this maturity – organizational, per process, by product, service, etc. – is closely what you need. It is important to be attentive to these gaps and categorize them as necessary.
5. One step at a time
A new query management tool must be implemented gradually and must be carefully planned. Otherwise, your resources and your customers will be rushed. Proceeding in stages is the best way to accomplish a successful implementation. In order to use a new solution, it is also recommended to dispose of the resources based on roles and experience. Thus, it is best to select the Level 1 resources receiving the calls while the senior officers can deal with management problems. Another example; a self-service portal, which acts as a one stop shop, cannot be established overnight.
6. The customer rules. Speak his language
For every inquiry, there is an applicant. However, some companies seem to forget as they focus more on their own processes, methodologies and classifications. Focusing on customers is essential for the proper conduct of a project and will directly add value to the consumption from your services catalog or the adoption of a self-service portal for your end-users.
7. Go elsewhere, get inspiration
Other organizations like yours respond to similar requests. Learning from testimonies and ITSM experience in your industry will surely help you move forward and better plan the implantation process.
8. An investment towards the quality of services
Replacing your outdated or archaic tool is a way to invest in the quality of your services and improving customer satisfaction. Contrary to perceptions, the acquisition of a service management software solution is more an investment than an expense. With set objectives, a plan and a customer focus, this cost rapidly becomes leverage, notwithstanding the contagious adoption it can create within your work teams.
Best of luck hunting for a new remedy!