How Can You Build a Strong Technical Support Team?
Maintaining a strong technical support component is increasingly important as more and more small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) look to outsource at least some of their IT operations.
A recent survey of 500 SMBs, conducted by CompTIA, the Computing Information Technology Industry Association, found that more than 70 percent of respondents said they have outsourced some portion of their IT.
The report, titled “Enabling SMBs With Technology,” also revealed that SMBs said they look to outside firms to gather expertise and new opinions on solutions, and are likely to switch IT firms if the company they currently use lacks innovative technology solutions.
“It’s encouraging to see that SMBs recognize the dynamic dual role of technology, with operational efficiency on one side and innovative goals on the other,” Seth Robinson, CompTIA’s senior director of technology analysis, said in a statement. “While new technology represents an investment, it is the most efficient way to meet strategic objectives.”
Outside IT firms can provide tremendous value in the delivery of technical assistance that helps SMBs achieve strategic objectives, but the outside company must be sufficiently competent, resourced and well-managed.
Adam Slutskin, chief revenue officer at remote monitoring and management (RMM) software provider LabTech Software, pointed out that IT issues “may impede an employee’s ability to do his or her job,” and that a great technical support team can serve as a vital resource.
“Outstanding technical support teams are important to modern organizations, (but) a great technical support team doesn’t create itself,” Slutskin wrote in a blog post. “It has to be carefully cultivated.”
Slutskin offered the following recommendations for MSPs looking to assemble successful technical support teams.
- Find the right talent — Understand the skills that successful members of your technical support team possess. When you interview an applicant for a technical support team position, tailor your questions to find applicants that possess these relevant skills.
- Offer tutorials and professional development — Host regular training sessions and educate workers on best practices. Also, provide clear instructions about the goals an employee needs to meet to grow professionally within your organization.
- Track performance — Measuring customer satisfaction, time spent resolving an issue and other key performance indicators (KPIs) ensures an MSP stays abreast of its technical support team’s performance and establishes useful future goals.
- Manage day-to-day operations — A technical support team’s day is dictated by the number of support issues generated by end users, which means two shifts are rarely identical. But striving for continuous improvements can help your technical support team become more efficient, bolstering its internal operations and enhancing customer experiences.
Cultivate a strong technical support team, and this group of IT experts can become an critical asset for your organization.
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