Archive for September, 2011

A Nip Here, Tuck There — Measuring & Improving Help Desk Effectiveness

September 20, 2011 Leave a comment

For operating the best help desk possible, it’s not just about tracking and reporting various data points. It’s about clearly understanding performance and transforming that understanding into actionable data — with the ultimate aim of improving efficiency, effectiveness, and user (and staff!) satisfaction levels.

To this, the below article appearing on ICMI touches upon some of the critical measures critical for successful call center (and help desk!) management.  We hope you enjoy this article.

The Measures Every Call Center Should Have

These key categories of measures and objective are as important for Facebook and Twitter interactions as they are for traditional contact channels.

Establishing the right measures and objectives is one of the most important responsibilities in leading and managing a call center successfully. But there’s a significant inherent challenge, which has only become more difficult with the introduction of new channels and social contacts – we produce mounds of data! And even so, many organizations are operating without information that is essential to creating the best results.

Ultimately, you will need to establish measures and objectives that are right for your organization. But there are seven key categories of measures that should be in place in every customer contact center. They build on each other, and it helps to order them from the most elemental and tactical, to strategic. They include:

Forecast Accuracy. If you don’t have an accurate prediction of the workload coming your way, it’s almost impossible to deliver efficient, consistent service and achieve high levels of customer satisfaction. And that’s just as true for new social interactions as it has been for telephone, chat or email.

Schedule Fit and Adherence. If you have a good handle on the call center’s workload, you can build accurate schedules that ensure the right people are in the right places at the right times. This is best managed from the bottom up, with ample buy in, and is an important enabler to everything else you’re trying to accomplish.

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Categories: Best Practices

It’s a “Social” — How to Get Your Help Desk Into the Party!

September 10, 2011 17 comments

We here at have been talking about the social/support paradigm — i.e. Facebook, Twitter — for quite some time now. We believe social sites like these provide an excellent forum for IT and CRM folk to augment and enhance their go-forward customer support strategies.

Be it internal help desk support or external customer care management, social site integration — as part of the overall support mission and strategy — is now critical. Users engage with these sites every day…in fact several times a day. Engagement begins where the users are…and the easier you make it for your users to engage…or complain…communicate…or simply report an issue…the better a job you’ll have in mitigating frustration and increasing response time and user satisfaction.

There’s a reason why help desk and CRM providers are increasingly integrating social support and integration into their software and platforms.  In fact, many vendors have already begun to introduce smart phone apps — for users and help desk technicians — taking social integration — and help desk support in general — mobile! As a help desk manager or software buyer/evaluator, it’s important you consider this increasingly important channel — social and mobile! — when making updates and changes to how you provide your support.

We came across the following article in InformationWeek and thought we’d share it as part of this quick write-up — How Social Can Improve Customer Service: Expert Advice. We suggest you give the article a read to get some interesting insights and perspectives into social site usage and how it’s changing…if not bettering…the help desk.

Here’s a quick excerpt:

Kate Leggett, senior analyst at Forrester, said it’s important for organizations to understand what communications channels customers want to be interacting on, then develop a social networking service model from there. For example, “once you have established that Facebook is the right medium to engage with your customers, you can offer customer service either from a separate tab on your Facebook page or by listening to comments on your Facebook page and engaging customers who need help.”

Leggett added that there is no right way to set up customer service presence on a social network, but that there are some basic tenets companies need to follow. For example, if you do decide to leverage Facebook, “ensure that your customer service services are tied back to what is offered by your company on your site, and ensure that you follow the same business processes for inquiries routed over Facebook as what you offer from your company website [so] that Facebook is not seen as a backdoor to your customer service organizations.”

Social networks can provide important data on the problems customers are having most often, as well as the products they would like to see changed (and how)–but only if you listen.

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