Taken as a whole, the customer service and support habitat is exceedingly complex. Taking a step back, however, reveals a much simpler truth: A customer presents an issue, a support agent solves it.
It’s Q&A. Plain and simple.
And, certainly, there’s a parallel to be found in the landscape of customer service and support software. While these software solutions must be able to withstand the demands of the “exceedingly complex,” they must do so without complicating the simpler, underlying person-to-person exchange.
In assessing customer service and support solutions, it’s important to take a step back. Get some perspective. The wide angle reveals a single plank upholding the entire platform. Truly, no single element is more important to your customer support experience than a powerful, agile ticketing platform.
Not every customer is built the same, though. Some are more technically adept than others. Some are meaner. Some less demanding. Some customers will pick up the phone. Others rely on e-mail, while still others prefer the DIY approach, seeking answers online.
A signficant challenge, then, is serving these divergent customer types equally and effectivley. With a focus on the customer experience, your ticketing system should help overcome this challenge; serving as an agile hub for your customer management needs without complicating the underlying, person-to-person interaction.
Of course, the entire customer experience is much larger than technical support and account management. The bottom line, though? When your customers actually need your help, their experience with the customer support organization is the only thing they’ll ever remember.
As such it’s critical to consider a few fundamental aspects of customer service:
1. Do all contact channels funnel into the same customer management system?
2 Does the support agent have access the entire customer history?
3. Does your ticketing system include troubleshooting features? Or must your agents toggle between systems?
4. If a customer’s issue isn’t resolved immediately, is it easy for them to track the status of their ticket?
These are simple questions with a huge impact on customer satisfaction. You must do them well. With repeated person-to-person interactions forming the basis of customer service and support, your ticketing system should most certainly provide the functions listed above. At a minimum.
As a quick checklist, your solution should offer an integrated framework for easily capturing customer inquiries, assigning tickets, troubleshooting, sharing information, and tracking the entire resolution lifecycle.
Additionally, you’ll want customizable workflows and workflow templates. These will allow you to easily adapts your system to changing business needs, disparate contact types, or complicated escalation paths.
Taken to the bare essentials, customer service is simply Q&A. A customer presents an issue, a support agent solves it. It’s easy. And that’s how it should feel to the customer.