Service With A Smile: The Ticket Time Bomb
How important is service to you? Even if you don't work in the service industry you have to deal with customers and suppliers, so being approachable and contactable is important.
Now I'm not going to name the company I'm referring to, I can see a few frowns on your faces, but safe to say the system of customer support this relates to is a common one.
If you deal with a large company there are usually many different channels to contact support, most common being telephone, email, support ticket or live online chat. Now if you provide these methods it's normally good practice to actually be on the other end to respond!
When supplying a phone number it's good that someone, especially between the hours of 9 and 5, picks up the darn thing or you have the ability to leave a voicemail! What's the point of a support number if there's no support?!
Naturally your next port of call is live online chat, except when you go to use it there's never anyone there to chat to! Live offline chat would be more appropriate!
And so we come to the support ticket, quite structured with various categories and status attachments, which funnily turns out to be more chaotic! You submit a ticket with your query and expect a response, a day goes by and you phone up, if you're lucky you get through to someone who then escalates your ticket to Urgent status. Thanks for that, I'm sure it'll work.
You get a response the next day saying the ticket has now been passed to the correct department, how many times can a ticket be passed round I wonder?!
If you're lucky you might get a fix within a week, if not it could be some time.
Providing a support service is key to a business, but if that service is neglected or poorly structured, you will soon start to lose custom. Don't smile through gritted teeth, give genuine support or a realistic response time.
Phew, rant over!