Archive for January 2012

TSW Best Practices 2012 Agenda Now Available: Sexy Operational Topics

January 19, 2012

The agenda for our Technology Services World Best Practices 2012 is almost complete. We are still finalizing case studies for the “Services Technology” track, so I wanted to highlight some sessions that show just how sexy some of the operational issues of service can be! The amount of expertise within our member and partner ecosystem is amazing, and I’m always impressed how willing experts are to share their expertise. The complete conference agenda is available via this link.

On the first day of the conference, Monday, May 7th, we open with a set of Professional Development Programs, a half-day deep dive on a topic with one of our expert alliance partners. Based on my inquiries, one session in particular jumps out at me as a “must attend:”  Winning Support Websites: From Assessment to Customer Love, presented by the always-popular Francoise Tourniaire. In this fast-paced workshop packed with checklists and practical recommendations, Francoise will show you how to:

  • Conduct an audit of your existing support site, combining internal evolutions, customer user testing, and competitive analysis.
  • Prioritize improvements to deliver an enticing customer experience at a reasonable cost.
  • Use web analytics to create a better website, and to continuously audit customer usage to improve the site.
  • Nail the three basic building blocks of support sites.
  • Prevent customers from having to think (too much).
  • Handle common dilemmas such as multiple product lines, multiple version numbers, and displaying alerts.
  • Integrate forums, the knowledgebase, and troubleshooting wizards into a seamless experience.
  • ….and much more.

With self-service success at an all-time low, please have someone attend this workshop and learn how to improve your customer self-service experience!

Speaking of self-service, who better to present a session on the topic than the 2011 STAR Award winner for Best Online Support, Cisco! On Wednesday, May 09, at 9:45am, hear from Chris Kells and Chris Vasan how Cisco earned this prestigious industry recognition for Online Support. During this session, Award-Winning Best Practices in Online Support, you’ll get the inside track and “how to” details directly from the individuals responsible for running this initiative. Additional session details coming soon, so stay tuned!

One of the trends I’ve been tracking over the last year is enterprise support adoption of web chat as a customer channel. In fact, one of our top attended webcasts from 2011 (which you can watch via this link to the OnDemand version) was a case study of how EMC successfully implemented chat, and we asked EMC if they would be willing to share their story at the conference.  On Tuesday, May 08, at 9:45am, don’t miss EMC’s Julie Larsen’s session:  Leverage Chat to Empower Customer Self-Help and Increase Utilization of Your eServices Support Channels. In this session, you will hear about how the journey to enterprise-level chat is an exciting one that includes a paradigm shift from the traditional support agent call-back model to a more direct, synchronous model across the globe and across business units. Learn about chat best practices and lessons learned as well as key considerations when considering multilingual chat. With a 700% increase in chat traffic, customers both large and small engage in chat sessions to quickly engage with technical and support experts. Customers are realizing faster response and resolutions times for their technical and support questions and issues. In fact, customers benefited from a 250% faster time-to-relief and a 15-25% increase in service requests closed in less than 24 hours. And customer satisfaction with chat is approaching 90%, the highest among our entire suite of online support tools.

Social Media is another favorite topic for TSW attendees, and we have several breakouts on the topic, including presentations by TSIA’s own social media expert, Shawn Santos. But I wanted to call your attention, in particular, to this session focused on the knowledge management side of social media, “Blending Knowledge Management and Social Media for Service and SupportService Social Media,” from VMware’s Lynn Llewellyn. This session will share social media and knowledge-management strategies from VMware® Global Support Services. The company has developed an innovative, award-winning program that provides invaluable assistance to its customers and helps deflect support cases–the Social Media Guidebook for Service and Support Responds to Customers Faster and Increases Satisfaction. It outlines VMWare’s efforts to create, implement, monitor, and measure its social support program. This is an ongoing process that the company continues to adjust and improve as the business grows.

In addition to these sessions, I will also be presenting the findings from my 2012 Services Technology Survey, highlighting technology  adoption, satisfaction and planned spending across 24 areas of services technology.  In “The 2012 TSIA Technology Heatmap: Service Technology Spending and Adoption Trends” on Monday, May 07 at 4:15 PM, find out what the most popular products are in highly-adopted areas such as incident tracking, multi-channel management, and web collaboration, and hear about the top technology trends impacting the service industry today.

And last, but hopefully not least, I will be closing out TSW with the closing keynote on Wednesday, May 09  at 12:30pm, “Lessons Unlearned: 25 Years in Customer Service.” I will be launching my new book, Lessons Unlearned, at TSW, and this session will highlight some of the book, as well as give you some background on my writing process. I’m hoping the book will serve as a manual for new support managers, and I look forward to finishing the publishing process and sharing a lifetime full of hard-learned lessons with you at Santa Clara!

Thanks for reading, now book your conference pass!