If you don’t already have a customer support system in place, or you do, but not all customer requests are logged, here are ten reasons why you really should be recording all customer support requests…
In a previous article I discussed whether or not an Apple style ‘Genius Bar’ was something IT departments should be considering.
Several clients of ours have Genius Bars set-up in a visible and central location, and tell us that they are very popular with their customers. Some universities have had IT outposts in their libraries for years. More of IT’s customers are using laptops, tablets and smartphones than desktops these days, enabling them to bring the device to IT rather than waiting for IT to come to them. These factors suggest that now may well be the time for IT departments to at least consider implementing a Genius Bar.
If you decide it is for you though, getting it right takes more than just reserving a spot and sending someone from the Service Desk to sit there. Here are 11 tips to help you get off on the right foot.
Some of IT’s customers have always preferred to walk over and speak to someone rather than phone the Service Desk. Generally though, management and consultants have actively discouraged walk-ups to Service Desk staff by customers. Some companies I’ve seen have gone so far as have the Service Desk behind locked doors, or hidden away in some dark corner or basement.
Yet increasingly we’ve seen clients who have IT outposts around the organisation they support, and they tell us they and their customers love it. So, why is there this apparent discrepancy? Is it just a flash in the pan inspired by the glamour of ‘Genius Bars’ and all things Apple? And is it something you should be considering for your IT department?
Far too much contact to the IT Service Desk is still channelled via email. While a lot of this demand is better channelled via a well-designed web-based customer portal (as discussed in a prior post), often there are examples where a phone call would have been the best option by far.
You’re implementing a new IT service and keeping IT’s customers satisfied from the start is vital. Your reputation and the reputation of IT is riding on it. A lot may have gone into preparedness, customer training, testing… but things will still go wrong. Customers will still have requests, experience faults or just have questions. This means that post go-live IT support is critical to keeping customers happy.
Here’s some things to consider getting in place to increase the chances of being able to provide good post go-live support for the new service and to minimise business disruption:
You are not as good at Incident Management as you think you are! Forget about all those glamorous ITSM processes like Service Level Management and Configuration Management, just focus on the basics of good old fashioned Incident (and Request) Management and you’ll see your IT customer satisfaction scores increase dramatically. Read on to find out why.
Every time there’s an IT incident, no matter how big or small, there’s an impact on business productivity and on IT’s reputation. I’m therefore a big believer in the mantra that the best way to improve IT support is to reduce the need for support in the first place. By pro-actively reducing incident volumes, you increase customer satisfaction with IT services, reduce support costs, and free-up IT staff to do work that’s more rewarding than firefighting.
So, what can you do to reduce IT incident volumes?