4 Self-Service Trends and Pacesetter Practices to Watch in 2017

Posted by John Ragsdale on 1/11/17 5:00 AM

With the unprecedented planned spending for customer self-service portals, companies are looking for help on where to start. Over the last year, TSIA's VP of Support Services Research, Judith Platz, and I have had the opportunity to work with multiple TSIA members on evaluating their current self-service programs, tools and metrics, and making recommendations on investment priorities to accelerate self-service success. I'm hoping these engagements have been as informative for the members as they have been for us.

As we head into 2017, I wanted to recap some trends and member pacesetter practices we are tracking related to self-service.

Read More

Topics: support services, social support, customer support, online communities, online support, customer engagement, self-service support, knowledge base

Are You Providing Regular Soft Skills Training?

Posted by Kari Dodge on 1/5/17 5:00 AM

Even if they have years of experience, your support staff needs to be trained on their soft skills on a regular basis. The expectations of today's customers are constantly changing, and what made them happy last year won't necessarily cut it this year. It's up to your staff to stay current and be ready to deliver the highest level of customer satisfaction in this highly competitive climate. In this post, I'll share how you can make sure your support services team can stay on top of the latest support techniques to continue delighting your customers.

Read More

Topics: support services, customer satisfaction, training, customer support, TSIA Strategic Services, soft skills, support staff excellence

Why Knowledge Management Is Important

Posted by John Chmaj on 12/7/16 5:00 AM

I recently read a blog from TSIA's John Ragsdale on the state of knowledge management (KM) and what is shaping it today—how are organizations using it, what corporate cultures are they operating in, and who is still trying to fully understand the significant value knowledge management brings?

While there are many factors that can shape the view of knowledge management within an organization, those who have come to truly understand its value are reaping the rewards. 

Read More

Topics: support, knowledge management, customer support, knowledgebase, online support, knowledge sharing, customer effort

Take Part in TSIA Social Support Research!

Posted by John Ragsdale on 12/2/16 5:00 AM

Today's customer is demanding support via their preferred channels, which means that online communities and Twitter are now being used as often as phone and email. No longer just a consumer phenomenon, social support has become a common practice in enterprise support, with the majority of B2B companies offering customer discussion forums. In fact, more than half of TSIA members are now offering some level of support via social media channels. But, that doesn't mean that we, as an industry, have it all figured out just yet.

You're invited to participate in TSIA's annual Social Support Survey, which tracks year-over-year trends in social channels offered for customer support, program ownership, performance metrics, service level agreements (SLAs), and staffing for both online communities and social media support. This year, we've added some new questions that will help us gain additional insight into community activity, including the role of customers vs. employees vs. partners in answering forum questions.

Read More

Topics: social media, support services, service level agreement (SLA), social support, customer support, TSIA Survey, online communities, multi-channel support, online support, TSIA Research

Putting the “Help” Back into Helpdesk

Posted by Danielle Miller on 10/27/16 5:00 AM

A few years back, while facilitating a workshop for a CNC machine builder, it became apparent why the “Helpdesk” was losing respect within their organization. Their team consisted of 12 experienced technicians, who referred to themselves simply as “The Desk". They had collectively removed the word “Help" from their name and were daily demonstrating negative behaviors, such as delayed assistance, growing impatience, and a general disregard for internal customers. The team’s actions were bringing down morale and beginning to impact business decisions. In fact, at the time of our event, their leadership team was weighing whether or not to outsource the department. So, how do you prevent this from happening with your own Helpdesk?

Read More

Topics: customer experience, support services, customer support, customer service

4 Essentials of a Winning Customer Self-Service Strategy

Posted by Jennifer MacIntosh on 8/23/16 6:30 AM

Great self-service is something most companies aspire to provide, in pursuit of an exceptional customer experience. When done well, it increases customer satisfaction and loyalty. It’s also cheaper and relieves the contact center from the burden of answering repetitive calls.

97% of the support leaders TSIA surveyed plan to invest in self-service tools in the next two years. To select the right tools, you first need to have a clear vision of what great self-service means to you and your customer.

Read More

Topics: knowledge management, support services, customer support, online communities, online support, self-service support, customer portal, TSIA Partners

Calling All Sales Leaders! Hit Your Quota Through Expand Selling

Posted by Mark Middlekamp on 6/9/16 6:30 AM

A refrain I often hear from many of our Expand Selling (ExS) discipline members is that the collaboration between the services and sales functions leaves a bit to be desired in the context of expand selling. TSIA research shows that only 33% of technology companies consider the level of collaboration between sales and services within their organization as “high”, and that's not even in the context of how services helps sales with expand selling!

Suffice it to say, there is certainly much room for improvement in how the sales and non-sales functions like services and customer success work together to systematically drive revenue growth with your existing customers. Therefore, my mission for this post is to explain why sales leaders should actively embrace services and customer success as expand selling partners. The reason is simple: they can help your team achieve quota. 

Read More

Topics: customer success, support services, services, sales, customer support, expand selling, LAER

Behind the Research: Customer Success and Support Services

Posted by Technology Services Industry Association on 4/19/16 6:30 AM

At TSIA, we provide technology and services businesses with the insights they need to grow, advance, and achieve their desired outcomes in our rapidly evolving industry. At the heart of this in-depth research are TSIA's research executives, who keep their fingers on the pulse of what's new and what's next in technology and services in order to deliver compelling content, best practices, and tools to our members. To highlight the brilliant people behind the research that makes TSIA what it is, we've invited the VP of Customer Success and Support Services research, Judith Platz, to tell us a bit about herself and her thoughts on both the current state and what the future holds in her area of research, customer success and support services.  

Read More

Topics: customer success, support services, customer satisfaction, customer support, Behind TSIA Research

4 Guiding Principles for Building Customer Loyalty

Posted by Donna Walker on 4/11/16 6:30 AM

We all know customer satisfaction is more important than ever to building customer loyalty and increasing retention, so it's fascinating to watch some customers display unwavering loyalty, no matter what their favorites brands do. Take the Chipotle food poisoning outbreak for example; after briefly falling from darling status, Chipotle is already setting the stage for a multi-year comeback with their “Better Burger”. And remember when Amazon raised the price of Prime Membership from $79 to $99 annually? We fussed, we complained on social media, but then we renewed anyways. With these examples in mind, here are four guiding principles your organization can use to build that kind of customer loyalty and prevent attrition.

Read More

Topics: customer loyalty, customer retention, customer support, customer service, TSIA Partners

The Art of Support: A Conversation With Francoise Tourniaire

Posted by John Ragsdale on 4/5/16 7:30 AM

In 1996, Francoise Tourniaire published the first edition of The Art of Support. Boy, the world has changed a lot since 1996, and the world of support has radically changed in the last 20 years. I’m happy to report that Francoise is back with a brand new edition of the book, The Art of Support: A Blueprint for Customer Success and Support Organizations, rewritten to reflect the realities of supporting customers today, including impacts such as social, mobile, customer success, new quality measures such as Customer Effort Scores, and a whole lot more. The book is available on Amazon in Kindle format, and available in hard copy from the FTWorks.com website. It will be available in hard copy from additional booksellers soon!

Francoise agreed to have a chat with me about the new book, and I wanted to share our conversation with readers of the TSIA blog. Here’s what we discussed. 

Read More

Topics: support, knowledge management, customer support, online support, self-service support

Comments

Subscribe to the Blog

Posts by Topic

see all

Follow TSIA