We have a saying in our company. “Software is only a reflection of what is happening in real life”.
So, What is Happening in Real Life Then?
In reality, various areas of your business are probably receiving requests, sometimes many types of requests, and then need to address them as quickly as possible.
Common areas of support:
- Customer Service / Support
- Billing / Finance
- Internal Support
But there is a problem.
This is what we think is happening (orderly progression of clear requests):
And if it was just one after the other, like that, then there wouldn’t be much to it. But what often happens is areas handling support functions tend to experience this:
The problems occur because of one or more of the following:
- Requests have unclear or incomplete information.
- Multiple people are trying to handle a single email inbox and so you don’t know who is handling what.
- There is no real way to prioritize these tasks and so everything just feels urgent.
- Because requests come in through many channels, balls fall between the cracks.
- Customers or staff send requests to many people in the hopes that it would be addressed, but most of the people it was sent to aren’t the ones to actually address it.
- Etc etc
It All Begins With The Process
When you break down the actions required to successfully handle support areas, you will find these basic steps:
- Make sure you understand the task. Clarify.
- Group similar types of tasks. Categorize.
- Know how important they are to solve. Prioritize.
- Get them to the people who can actually sort it out. Assign.
- Get them taken care of. Resolve.
- Get back with the originator of the ticket. Reply and Close.
The Support person must ensure that they actually understand the issue or request. It is very common that clients or even internal staff will send you incomplete information, so little information that you really can’t do something about it.
Even if you’re not the one that will take care of the issue, you need to ensure that you have enough information that the person who is supposed to take care of it can actually do that.
Because there can be so many different types of issues, grouping (or categorizing) tasks helps you determine WHO should be handling them and HOW they should be handled.
It probably sounds obvious, even too simplistic. But this is often overlooked when an area is just doing their best to stay above water and trying to “just take care of the customers”. Getting tickets correctly categorized gives you visibility, reporting and then helps make it possible to establish a process provide excellence.
Not all issues are created equal. There are definitely going to be some that are a lot more important than others. Prioritizing is something that needs to be established as a process and then can be easily implemented into a ticketing system.
Assigning tickets one you have clarified, categorized and then prioritized makes all the difference in the world. At this point you will simply take care of the issue yourself (if you are the right person to do that) or assign the ticket to the person that needs to take care of it.
Whether you are the person that takes care of the ticket, or someone else is, the above actions being done mean that it can be addressed much faster. Faster resolution means more efficiency in the organization and happy clients.
Now is the fun part. You get to reply to your customer and let them know it’s all been taken care of. They feel like you are a superhero and everyone goes on their merry way. Yay!
Using the information in this article, focus on nailing down the various ways you can carve up and group all the wild number of requests you get and establish a process for taking care of them.
GrandCentr.al is our business management platform, allowing you to implement the Support Ticketing process covered above. Not only do we provide the tool, but we help your business with implementation. Because for us, software is only a reflection of what is happening in a business.
If you have any questions, or like to schedule a private demo with Claire of VP of Sales, click here