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.

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

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.

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

TSW Las Vegas 2016: What I Heard

Posted by John Ragsdale on 10/28/16 5:00 AM

After each of our Technology Services World Conferences, I like to look back over all the 1:1 meetings, breakout session questions, and hallway conversations, and come up with some of the top trends and issues I heard. Last Tuesday, I had 1:1 meetings scheduled from 8 AM to 5:30 PM, which was a great opportunity to hear what members are working on, where they are seeing success, and where they are struggling. 

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Topics: knowledge management, professional services, social support, online communities, online support, professional services automation (PSA)

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.

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

TSIA’s 11th Annual Global Technology Survey Is Now Open!

Posted by John Ragsdale on 3/10/16 6:30 AM

In 2006, when I first joined TSIA (then SSPA), I thought it would be a good idea to conduct a survey in order to find out which kinds of technology companies were using and how satisfied they were. We had a great response to the survey, and the data was hugely helpful in answering member inquiry questions. I’ve run the survey each year since, with a few tweaks to categories as new technologies became popular and others merged. I’m very happy to announce that the 2016 survey is now open, so please take a few minutes to complete this short, 10-minute survey and tell us a little bit about the technology you and your company are using. 

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Topics: support, knowledge management, customer relationship management (CRM), TSIA Survey, online communities, TSIA Research

The State of Knowledge Management: 2015

Posted by John Ragsdale on 10/2/15 6:30 AM

TSIA's third annual knowledge management survey is complete, and the results clearly show how difficult it is for companies to get the people, process, and technology of knowledge management (KM) right. I am currently working on the findings, and will be publishing two research reports as well as presenting the findings in my Power Hour presentation at our upcoming TSW 2015 Service Transformations conference in Las Vegas this October. Here's a sneak preview of a few early findings.

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Topics: knowledge management, online communities, knowledgebase, online support

[Breaking News] Verint Systems Acquires Telligent: Customer Community Core to Customer Engagement Strategy

Posted by John Ragsdale on 8/17/15 5:00 AM

When I first began publishing research on customer communities as a self-service channel in 2004, few companies had a community, and most were afraid of the “free-for-all” nature of discussion forums, fearful of what customers might say. Today, communities are a critical channel in supporting customers (and partners), allowing expert customers to answer other users’ questions and weigh in on any issue based on their own unique experiences. 

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Topics: customer success, knowledge management, social support, online communities, online support, customer engagement

Top Takeaways from TSW 2015 Best Practices

Posted by Technology Services Industry Association on 5/26/15 6:30 AM

TSW conferences are a great way to get a top-level view of the latest trends in the industry, and how leading organizations are rising to meet emerging challenges as well as their best practices. During the conference, TSIA’s VP Research, Technology and Social, John Ragsdale, was able to get a detailed overview of the latest industry buzz through one-on-one conversations with TSIA members and partners, as well as TSW attendees. Here is a snapshot of some of the key takeaways from TSW 2015 Best Practices that John observed, in his own words. 

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Topics: knowledge management, online communities, online support, professional services automation (PSA), Technology Services World Conference

Why You Need to Provide Social Support

Posted by John Ragsdale on 2/10/15 6:30 AM

Customer satisfaction goes beyond fielding customer phone calls and on-site visits. You must also be able to provide social support through a variety of online channels, including email, online discussion communities, and social media. When your customer has a problem with your technology, the majority will first try to solve their issue themselves via an online search (Tweet this!). For many organizations, providing social support can seem like a lot of work, but in the long run, it can lower your operational costs, increase customer satisfaction, and allow your support team to better assist your customers

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Topics: support, online communities, online support

TSIA’s 9th Annual Technology Survey Is Now Open!

Posted by John Ragsdale on 3/6/14 12:54 PM

Take part in TSIA annual survey that addresses adoption, satisfaction, and planned spending for commonly used technologies including CRM, knowledge management, enterprise search, web collaboration, online communities, social media monitoring, analytic platforms, and learning management. Open to all; the benefits are many!  

 

TSIA's 9th annual Tehnology Survey is now open! This survey covers 24 categories of tools and services used by customer support, professional services, education services, managed services and field service. The survey is open to everyone (not just TSIA members), and if you complete the survey, you will receive a copy of the resulting research report, “The 2014 TSIA Heatmap,” which discusses adoption levels of each category and top technology trends related to service organizations.

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Topics: adoption services, social media, knowledge management, customer relationship management (CRM), data analytics, TSIA Survey, online communities, collaboration

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