The switch from an outsourced to an in-house help desk is reaping good rewards at Softline Enterprise where managers confer that the biggest benefit of this is the “finger on the pulse” factor.
In addition, the software vendor recognises the help desk as the perfect place to promote the benefits of their solutions to customers.
Prem Byjnal, product and support manager at Softline Enterprise, says that in a world where efficiency equals competitiveness for many companies, an in-house help desk must be top-notch.
“Many companies underrate the importance of the help desk. It is your company’s first point of contact with customers and must, as such, be manned by knowledgeable, helpful staff. Your company’s reputation depends on this.”
Softline Enterprise, Byjnal says, made short work of addressing the teething problems experienced when the help desk was brought in-house two months ago.
“In terms of technology, we had to find the quickest call routing system and in terms of our customers, we went through a brief period of addressing comfort issues around the in-house system. Further to this, we ensured that our staff received the support they needed to deliver expert and efficient service."
Johann Henn heads up the Softline Enterprise help desk as support manager, and he is assisted by Liesl Coetzer and Samantha Taylor. Henn and Coetzer bring 10 years of implementation experience to the table, while Taylor has extensive end-user background. Byjnal’s role involves, amongst other things, overseeing the pre-sales, professional services and support teams.
For a company to be able to manage the entire service process, Byjnal says, carries enormous benefit.
“Managing the process – from pre-sales through to sales, implementation and post sales – allows us to achieve full control and identify problem areas, and rectify these, as soon as they occur.”
There is also no doubt that the in-house “bird’s eye view” adds value to Softline Enterprise’s knowledge of prospective and current customers, and implementation partners, as managers are able to resolve product lifecycle issues timeously and efficiently. With direct access to a support team at parent company, Sage UK, including a development team, Softline Enterprise is further able to add value when it comes to product strategies and roadmaps.
“We have also formed a partnership to exchange knowledge and support issues and resolutions with our Australian counterpart and, in so doing, have access to an even larger knowledge base,” Byjnal says. “Being a solution vendor, we are in the business of recommending technological solutions to our customers, so it is imperative that we are seen using and evolving these very technologies to their utmost capabilities in delivering an outstanding customer experience.”