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It’s pretty ironic that the simpler and more elegant a solution is for your customers, the more difficult it is for you to consistently deliver on that promise. This is particularly true when you provide services in the “cloud” or depend on other company’s clouds to deliver your offerings.

In a world where customers increasingly judge your support against best-in-class consumer support, how do we support executives give customers a superior experience, employees a rewarding work culture, and continue to scale massively, all without breaking the bank?

It Isn’t for Lack of Trying

Over the years, we have spent millions of dollars making significant improvements addressing the individual components of people, process, and technology. Our teams are better trained than before, our processes are optimized (often over-engineered), and we have continually upgraded our systems. In some cases, we’ve even brought in consultants to set up our customer relationship management systems, knowledge bases, collaboration tools, search engines, and so on.

The Result

Customer satisfaction rates are the same as in 1976, and in many ways, have gotten worseWhat’s the reason? We don’t tend to address the problem holistically. It’s no different than strapping jet engines to the sides of a helicopter, bolting the resulting contraption on top of a speedboat and thinking that we have created the ultimate personal transport vehicle. It simply doesn’t work as expected when it is put together like that.

What’s the Best Way to Get Started?

The best way to approach unifying the people, process and technology strands of your strategy is through a modern set of key performance indicators (KPIs) that can be used to run modern services businesses.

The good news is that in today’s data rich world we can measure everything. The bad news is that we often do. But which measures are the ones worth monitoring and reporting, and which ones can we drop? Which measures truly speak to the health of a support organization, and which ones are merely nice to have vs. must have? Which measures should we share with executives, team members, and customers? 

Hint: It’s a lot less complicated than you think.

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Phil Verghis

About Author Phil Verghis

Phil Verghis is the CEO and co-founder of Klever, a TSIA Consulting Alliance Partner, and has won numerous awards for knowledge sharing since the early 1990s. As vice president of infrastructure and support at Akamai Technologies, he founded the customer support team and ran the global network (15,000 servers), operations (66 countries), and IT teams during a time of massive growth and profitability, and during the dot-com crash. During his time with the company, Akamai went from $0 in revenue in 1999 to over $200 million in revenue in Q1 2004. Prior to Klever, he was a trusted advisor to service and support executives around the world with The Verghis Group. Phil has an undergraduate degree in electrical and computer engineering and an MBA from the University of New Hampshire. He lives in Chapel Hill, NC.

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