In our day to day lives, we consume IT services every waking minute. As is the reality of technology, it is often a question of when not if it breaks. When this eventuality happens, it’s time to contact IT Support. The ones we remember fondly and recommend to our friends, families and business partners, are those that deliver services paid for, talk to you as a human being and show understanding for the impact their issue is causing. Almost like calling your IT savvy friend for assistance. Unfortunately, it is near impossible for a large organization to have a direct, friendly relationship with all of its customers like that of a friend.
During incident situations it is important to ensure that customers have a clear and open understanding of what steps are being taken, what the next steps are and have an understanding of what you are doing to remediate their situation.
Setting the correct expectation with the customer as to when they will receive updates (hourly/daily) and what communications channel will be used (telephone/ email/ text) for updates are an important part in setting a rhythm to the often chaotic incident response process.
The update may not have more information than “we are continuing to investigate” however this openness helps to distress the situation and build customer faith that incident response is active and ongoing. A failure to communicate correctly and in a timely manner, leaves a customer blind.
It is our belief that full transparency is required when discussing incident investigations, service requests and over-all service health.
Transparency, while often a scary idea performs 2 actions:
Customers are often understanding of the issues that can exist in the IT World. With so many moving parts, and often speaking technical to technical, openness reinforces that you know what you are doing, are accountable for your services delivered and are not attempting to hide anything.
It is always important to take a retrospective and measure how you are performing. It is even more important to review and work through these measurements with your customer.
While it may not always be pretty and green across the board, monthly and quarterly reporting on service performance, tickets raised and general engagement health invites the customer on the journey with you. It is an open conversation to understand where you have succeeded and failed, what can be done to improve, set targets and make plans for the next month/quarter.
This is what we believe makes for a standout managed services and support provider.