Monday, April 2, 2012

Why the Future of Software is No Software

Help desk software is changing - it's social customer service application built for the cloud. Traditionally, customer support software was designed to focus on resolving issues rather than helping people. Customer cases were generally handled by any available agent on a “first come first serve” basis, and agents typically knew little to nothing about the customer. With no mechanism for storing any context or customer background, agents spent more time re-learning about the issue rather than actually resolving it. And if that wasn’t enough, customer support software had to be maintained and updated, which meant companies wasted considerable time and resources hiring and training agents. There was no system for retaining customers beyond the fleeting one-time interactions, and it encouraged an impersonal approach to handling customer support.

Today’s customer service software bears few similarities to the software of the past. Customers are demanding more and better customer service, delivered through every conceivable channel from apps to mobile devices to the web. That’s why many smart businesses are using software as a service as a solution for help desk management. The key contrast with traditional software is that today’s software requires no software. Software as a service is delivered through the web, which means no installation or updates. So you can lower costs and raise agent productivity. You can spend less time training agents and more time making customers happy. And you can resolve customer issues is quickly and easily so no customer ends up in “support purgatory.” The future of software is no software.

Today’s customers want answers fast and don’t want to waste their time getting their issue resolved. That’s why so so many customers end up frustrated with traditional customer service methods and its agents. Companies need to understand the value of their current customer base, and recognizing what they need to do in order to keep them. When you promote agent-customer relationships in your customer support methods and tools, you'll save yourself two or three callbacks tomorrow. Your employees will become more skilled and motivated, and your costs will go down over the long run. Software as a service is the “new 800 number” and it’s good for your customers and your business.

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