In a great many support organizations, case management remains labor-intensive and cost-heavy. Our research has shown that by and large, system and process deficiencies are to blame. Follow these 9 Support case resolution best practices to start bringing time- and cost-efficiency (plus increased customer value) to your operations.
Diagnosing issues in Support case management
Once the opportunity to prevent or deflect a case has passed, companies must respond with expert resources to diagnose and resolve customer issues. Yet case management is THE most costly and time-consuming Support process. Support leaders with P&L responsibility must therefore make all efforts to expedite all cases rapidly and effectively. It starts with a “look under the hood” to understand the challenge at a granular level:
Key trends in Support case management
Our most recent research into current Support challenges and practices revealed these telling trends:
- More than half of companies continue to use in-house case management systems.
- Nearly half (47%) of cases are submitted with insufficient information to begin meaningful diagnosis and resolution.
- On average, each new case results in two additional interactions between Support and the customer.
- Two-thirds of companies organize Support resources in tiers, with the remainder using a more collaborative, team-based approach.
- 54% of cases on average are closed at first contact with the remainder requiring a “next step” to resolve cases.
- More than a third (35%) of companies organize case resolution resources by team and will collaborate to resolve cases.
- Companies report that collaboration has a positive impact on customer satisfaction and time to resolution.
- Only two-thirds (67%) of companies formally document the circumstances of each case in their ticket management system.
- Fewer than half of companies indicate that knowledge base articles are updated or created when a case is closed.
Clearly, these trends expose abundant opportunities to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and (of course) deliver customer satisfaction.
Consider these 9 Support case management best practices.
From case open to closure, case management and resolution processes must be efficient and effective. Our research suggests that applying these best practices can improve results in your Support organization.
- Apply structured data collection to assure that submitted cases are complete.
- Encourage adoption of web-based case submission.
- Apply intelligent automation to triage and routing of new cases.
- Deflect as cases are created.
- Leverage case closure automation.
- Completely document closed cases.
- Trigger knowledge process upon case closure.
- Apply these key metrics to track the impact of the above best practices.
I’ll say it again: Case management is the most costly and time-consuming Support process. And because you can’t improve what you don’t measure, It’s critical to monitor all aspects of case management to identify efficiencies and opportunities to reduce support demand. Consider using the following metrics and measures:
- Case Submission Completeness
- Customer Interactions Per Case
- First Contact Resolution
- Escalation Rate
- Collaboration Rate
- Time to Resolution
- Total Effort to Resolve
- Closed Case Record Completion Rate
- New vs. Known Issues
- Knowledge Action Rate