The secret to managing technical support or production support cases/tickets like a Rock Star is to think beyond just support. Here’s what I mean… If you are leading a technical, production support department, only focusing on problems, post “go live” is reactive and does not paint the entire customer experience picture. Instead, you should gain visibility into all product issues and all tickets, including those found during testing or found during projects. You should understand the volume and causes, and then identify trends across ticket sources. This allows you to move into proactive mode and influence product release decisions that will have the biggest bangRead More →

Guest Blog by Bernie Smith, KPI Expert, United Kingdom What are going to be the big themes for KPIs in 2012? We can get some clues from the world of consumer IT and software. In the consumer-computing world overwhelming change in the last 2 years has been in two areas, user expectation and usability. For years consumers were prepared to put up with some ridiculous behaviour from their computers, frequent unexplained pauses, regular user-driven updates, software that just didn’t work or that had a very steep learning curve. You wouldn’t expect your TV to take 5 minutes to switch on and to inexplicably stop every soRead More →

We have all heard the phrase; “you can’t manage it, if you can’t measure it”. I also believe that “you can’t manage, it if you are always adjusting it”. When you work in a culture that is very numbers driven or reliant, there will always be pressure to adjust your data or reporting to account for outliers, one-offs, process errors etc. This is a very slippery slope. You can not eat a single potato chip and you can not make only one adjustment. When data and reports are “clean”, i.e. with no manual adjustments, the data is objective and we treat all parties/divisions consistently andRead More →

Flying into every meeting with the right charts and graphs, waving the influence wand to make products defect free and removing those boulders of productivity.. It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s “CustomerSat Kat“…one of the first, customer support intelligence superheroes. Do you have the goods to create customer support intelligence superheroes in your department? Every customer contact, every e-support request, every tech support problem should be considered a learning opportunity for the organization at large. More specifically, an opportunity that can help the organization improve products & services, elevate the customer experience, reduce costs and drive sales revenue. You can make this happen, byRead More →

A technical support capacity plan, also called a resource model, is used to estimate the required human resources (FTEs) and related costs during a designated, future time period and is often a key input for the annual, budget planning process. In most cases, labor is the largest component of a tech support department’s expenses. Capacity planning is both an art and a science. Even with all of the data in the world there is no way to project the future with 100% certainty, so you must add in your leadership experience and judgment, i.e. the art, to create the best plan possible. We must expectRead More →

Q4 is approaching and it will soon be time to evaluate and update your technical support organization’s customer focused metrics for 2012.  To get started, I recommend that you consider customer metrics in two categories, “work in process” and “service delivery”. Work in process metrics focus on the cases or tickets that are still open and include measurements such as backlog, backlog ratio, average age and internal service level achievement. Service delivery metrics focus on the end of the support process, at the time or after the service has been delivered. These measurements include SLA (also called average days to close) and customer satisfaction. Today’sRead More →