How to Build a Successful Customer Support Strategy Using, Well … Data
The rise of social media and SaaS offerings have put the limelight on Customer Support, a company’s front line for ensuring happy customers. To be successful, Customer Support teams have to address a wider range of more complex issues, which requires access to actionable, real-time data to allow them to do their job effectively.
To enable our customers to build a successful Customer Support strategy, we introduced a new Bash, GoodSupport. Just like the Bashes we introduced last summer — GoodMarketing, GoodSales and GoodSubscription — this new solution includes industry best practice metrics, reports, and dashboards, and leverages GoodData’s powerful analytics and beautiful visualizations.
To showcase how our new Bash, GoodSupport, can increase customer retention and turn customer data into a source of revenue and profits we thought it’d be useful to share how we’re using it internally at GoodData. We have asked our rockstar director of customer support, Ray Light, to share his thoughts on what it takes to build an A+ customer support organization and why good data is key.
Ray has taken advantage of the capabilities of GoodSupport to give him access to a wider range of relevant information in a way that makes it easier for him to manage his team and focus on the right actions.
“I tend to use customer support metrics for either strategic applications – for instance, when determining how I allocate team resources – or operational applications to understand how my team is performing.”
To run an efficient team, Ray needs to have both a strategic and operational view into his data. As such, Ray has divided his reports into separate strategic and operational areas, enabling him to only look at one dashboard for either purpose.
Here is a breakdown of how Ray leverages GoodSupport.
Step 1: Leveraging Data to Set a Successful Strategy
Ray relies on two core capabilities of GoodSupport to meet his strategic objectives: visualization and heat maps.
Visualize essential metrics
In Ray’s own words: “I need to know which issues are coming in at what rate and at what time so I can make sure my team is well equipped to handle incoming requests. I want to see all of the factors that influence those strategic decisions in one place.”
To provide this information, Ray uses graphs to visualize key metrics. These metrics include: number of tickets created by month over the last year to identify seasonality and long-term trends; tickets solved by agent over time to see how those tickets are resolved; and, last but not least, tickets created and solved by week for when a closer look is needed.
Heat maps reveal trends
Ray also found a lot of value in using heat maps. “I use heat maps to see how many tickets are created per hour over the course of an average day, and look at how that map changes over the last twelve weeks. This tells me within what hours of the day tickets tend to be created the most, and if that rate is changing. This information allows me to distribute my resources accordingly.”
The heat map tells Ray which hours of the day require the most resources from his team. He can also look at how tickets come in from different regions across different hours, suggesting that he might need to consider support in a specific language at a certain time of day, for example.
All of these pieces give Ray a good high-level overview of the status of our Customer Support team. As GoodData grows and more customer support tickets come in, Ray can see month-over-month trends and compare them against previous benchmarks to determine the progress made to date and adjust resource allocation accordingly — all from the insights offered by one dashboard in GoodSupport.
Step 2: Streamline Customer Support Operations Through Data
When it comes to the operational performance of the team, Ray relies on a different set of metrics. “I need real-time access to reports at an operational level, including customer support agent performance, customer satisfaction scoring and backlog status.”
Monitor customer support agent performance
To efficiently manage his team, Ray looks at how an average agent performs in terms of tickets closed, response time, satisfaction score, and other metrics. This allows him to understand what to expect if he were to add an additional agent to his team. Ray also requires visibility into individual agents’ performance relative to the average, allowing him to properly reward rockstar agents and make sure his team is achieving their KPIs.
Drive optimal customer satisfaction
Ray is measured on overall customer satisfaction, which requires an intimate understanding of the factors that influence customer satisfaction. As such, he looks at both overall customer satisfaction levels, as well as scores by individual customer support agent – all in the same report. This single report clearly shows Ray the feedback loop, detailing which customers submit tickets, how they are resolved, and how satisfied they are with the outcome so he can identify who needs more attention or support.
Minimize ticket backlog
While he monitors agent performance and customer satisfaction very closely, Ray checks in on ticket backlog a little less frequently. “I like to take a look once or twice a week to make sure we aren’t overlooking any customers’ tickets. I also want to understand the ratio of tickets created vs. solved in a week.” Ideally, Ray’s team solves more tickets than are created, reducing backlog over time. He has built his backlog report to show which agents or customers are responsible for backlog tickets, flagging any potential problems with a customer or agent so he can manage accordingly.
Using GoodSupport, Ray is able to effectively set the long-term strategy for his team, while monitoring operational performance in real-time, to ensure happy GoodData customers. GoodSupport gives him everything he needs to know, without relying on complex, heavy IT systems or waiting days or weeks for reports to be created. It’s the new approach to customer support, where real-time insights shape the right actions.
If you’re interested in learning how GoodSupport can help you maintain happy customers, give us a call at (415) 200-0186 or ask to set up a demo.