One of the things we’re focusing in on at PBwiki is how we can become a better support team. When PBwiki launched back in 2005, we had no formalized support, just a forum that our users chatted on. We found a few amazing people on the forums and invited them to join our PBwiki team as Support Gurus. I started working for PBwiki in mid-January 2008. At that time, we handled all support requests through a Gmail email account. As different support agents came to work, we would answer emails from our users. If a ticket needed attention by someone else, it would get starred. We had labels, tags, and a bolding/unbolding system to indicate different status levels. As PBwiki grew, we knew that we couldn’t continue using this system any longer. It was too easy to forget about someone’s case, we weren’t measuring anything, and we had no real accountability to our users.
Welcome Mr. Metrics
Then Paul Singh joined PBwiki as Director of Support. Paul likes to call himself “Mr. Metrics” because of his love of measuring, analyzing, and breaking down data for consumption. One of his first moves was to take the support team away from Gmail and introduce us to Salesforce. As a newer PBwiki employee, I loved Salesforce. However, it was a difficult transition for some of our support team, who had been used to the easy, but limited in functionality, Gmail support account. Moving to Salesforce was hard, especially as we figured out its limitations and adjusted our workflows.
The Problem with Gmail as Support
While using a Gmail account for support was simple and easy, it lacked in accountability and measurables for the support team. Now that we use Salesforce, Support has a more complex system, but we’re better able to measure and gauge the work we do. We can now pull data on every aspect of the support experience, from what the ticket is about, response times, and satisfaction rates.
What Our Support Team Measures
When we looked at what to measure, we had to focus on what we valued as an organization. We decided to focus on two areas:
1) Response Times: PBwiki aims to respond to all users in a set amount of time. Each of our support team members is measured on how quickly the respond to tickets. Our average initial response time has dropped from nearly seventy hours (January 2008) to two hours (October 2008). That’s twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
2) Satisfaction Rate: Answering emails isn’t the whole of what we do in PBwiki Support. We get to know you, get involved in your projects, and help you each step of the way. That’s why we enforce the idea of quality over quantity. A great response time means nothing if users are unhappy. It is up to our support team to make your day and make sure you walk away saying that your experience with PBwiki Support was the best customer support experience you’ve ever had.
We now have a tables, charts, graphs, numbers, and statistics that help support communicate the voice of the user to the rest of the company. Now the support team is taking these metrics to help us respond quickly, efficiently, and effectively to your support inquiries. We’ve come a long way from the user forums.