As we have discussed in prior posts, you need to ask the right questions in order to make the most intelligent selection when it comes to a SaaS solution. In addition to inquiring about security, data retention and ownership, and performance and availability, it is important to find out what kind of post-deployment service and support each provider offers.
Inquiring About Support
Your success with your SaaS application depends greatly on your relationship with your service provider. How closely will they work with you to ensure that you continue to derive value from your solution? Will they be there to help you if problems arise? Is their support team qualified to assist you?
Early on in the evaluation process, you’ll need to gather and review detailed information about each vendor’s:
- Available support and service channels
- Hours of operation and service level agreements (SLAs)
- Support team members (qualifications, experience, responsibilities, etc.)
What to Look For
Any viable SaaS vendor will serve as a true partner to their clients, and demonstrate a strong commitment to the success of each and every one of their customers. Make sure you are receiving superior service and support by choosing a vendor that offers:
- A variety of flexible support options – phone, email, live chat, etc.
- Convenient hours of operation – a minimum of 12 hours a day, 5 days a week.
- A team of support professionals who are skilled, well-trained and educated, and experienced.
- Self-service capabilities, including a comprehensive knowledgebase that will enable you to quickly address simple or routine problems on your own.
Additionally, many SaaS vendors will limit the number of tickets you can submit each month, charging additional fees for any issues opened above and beyond the number that is defined in the contract. Be sure you have the ability to submit an unlimited number of tickets to the help desk, at no extra cost.
In our next post about SaaS vendor evaluations, you’ll learn what questions to ask when it comes to solution enhancements and upgrades.
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