Is your team drowning in support and service request emails? Are you getting the service management blues from the email black hole? From small-sized businesses to a larger enterprise, managing customer support requests via email is no longer sustainable….or smart. With no service management solution in place, there lacks the ability to create great user experiences, obtain vital service metrics, automate workflows, and break down organizational silos.
How do you know when you’ve outgrown emails? Here are 5 signs you should pay attention to:
1. Slow response times (and customers are noticing). Are you getting some negative user reviews? Do you have internal (or external) customers frustrated about the length of time getting their support requests answered? Those are red flags telling you that managing customer support through email is no longer working for you. We’re surrounded by mobile and social connectedness and the need for instant gratification, motivating customers to expect stealthy responses to their service and support requests.
2. Playing email hide and go seek. Are emails getting lost or buried in long email chains? Or maybe they were accidentally deleted (because we all know how easy that can happen). There are many limitations on creating shared inboxes for the support team, creating lost emails and lack of accountability.
3. Too big of a crowd to fulfill a support or service request. Have you had customers complaining of receiving different responses to their service/support requests from different support agents? Think about Gmail — there is no ability to assign specific emails to different support team members in that platform. Agents have no clear idea who is working on what request, creating disorganization on the team and causing customers to think the same.
4. The slow exodus of customers using email. Email isn’t going away anytime soon. However, customers are using other channels to lodge complaints or give feedback. Think: social media channels like Twitter and Facebook. They want and expect to be able to have more than one method of contacting service and support.
5. The case of the nonexistent metrics. Is management unsure at what level of service your organization is performing? What’s your cost per ticket and agent utilization? What about your customer satisfaction numbers? Using an email-based system for a service desk is probably not giving you the data intelligence that you need to create win-win for both the customers and your organization. Not only that, but you have no conclusive idea as to whether your performance and operations are healthy and on par against peer companies.
Take the leap away from the email black hole. With a robust set of features, including but not limited to service catalog, self-service portal, knowledge base, incident, problem, and change management, the offerings of a strong IT service management solution will let you ditch using email and spreadsheets to manage your IT department.
About Danielle Livy
Danielle is the Senior Director, Marketing, ITSM at SolarWinds. She has wide-ranging experience in content production, social media marketing, public relations, and brand messaging. Her happy place is sitting by the lake with a cold beverage in hand, with the occasional water ski session.
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