Improve the Perceived Value of Your Support Center


Are you missing everyday opportunities to show the value you are already delivering?

by Manley Feinberg
February 29, 2016

Have you ever found yourself in this scenario? Your team is working hard. They are actually getting a lot done, and you have the metrics to show it. But, despite their best efforts, end users and their leaders still complain that they aren’t getting supported in the way they need? What is missing? How can you illuminate the value you know your team is already providing? 

In our recent HDI Support Center Analyst (HDI-SCA) and HDI Support Center Manager (HDI-SCM) courses in Denver, this situation made nearly everyone in the room squirm. We had all experienced this scenario at some point. So what can we do about it?

In the HDI-SCA class, feedback from attendees indicated that some simple best practices in call handling could dramatically help with this challenge and enhance the customer experience. The ah-ha moment may surprise you. It’s about how you frame your efforts that makes all the difference. When you summarize steps taken in the call, don’t skip all the extra steps you took to solve the issue. You can dramatically improve the perceived value of your efforts by following a three-step process. 

  1. Find the value in the process. Think through the troubleshooting steps you took to move the incident or request forward. (Note that you do NOT have to wait until the incident or request is resolved to start showing value for your efforts!) 
  2. Frame the value. What result could this produce for them? Look for ways it might help them work faster, provide less frustration, or make something they need to do easier.
  3. Add one more item of value. Keyboard shortcuts are a great way to blow users’ minds with time-saving tips. Have a top 10 list you pull from.

Let’s look at an example where we apply these principles: A user calls in with trouble accessing a web application or portal. As part of the troubleshooting process, you have them empty a browser cache. Typically you wouldn’t even mention this, but armed with the ideas in this article, you say the following in your summary:

“You mentioned your web browsing has been slow lately. I took a few steps to resolve this that will typically speed up your web browsing….Would you like a way to save yourself several minutes a day when switching between applications? You’re going to love this. Every time you go for the mouse; hit ALT+TAB instead. When you get in the habit of doing this, you’ll end up with more time to call your favorite service desk analyst for more time-saving ideas.” 

The bottom line is you are probably already doing a lot of valuable work as part of your process that provides value for your users. The key is looking for steps to expose and position your efforts in a way that helps your customer realize the direct value to them.  Then, over deliver with a keyboard shortcut or other helpful tip. When your team members follow this framework consistently, you will see the results in your customer service metrics and smiles on your customers’ faces.

I’d love to hear what your teams are doing to illuminate their value and to exceed your customer expectations every day. Be sure to leave a comment below with your favorite value-add item.


Manley Feinberg is the founder of VerticalLessons.com. He is a best-selling author and award-winning international keynote speaker. Leveraging more than twenty years of IT, business, and professional speaking experience, his insight and energy will inspire you to reach your next summit. Manley’s eleven years of leadership influence contributed to a workplace culture that landed Build-A-Bear Workshop on the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For list four years in a row. Manley served two terms as the president of the St. Louis Chapter of the National Speakers Association and is a member of the HDI Strategic Advisory Board. 


Tag(s): supportworld, support operations, support center, desktop support, customer satisfaction

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