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Does your service provider measure up?

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Having managed support for some of the largest global businesses for over 10 years, it still comes as a shock when customers share some of their service experience stories with us.

Now, we’re not going to single out or name and shame bad providers. That would be unprofessional.

Instead, we’re going to talk about service levels – and what you should expect your provider to offer at the very minimum.

We’re also going to highlight why it always pays to look beyond headline promises and check the small print of your agreement. Especially when it comes to what is – and what isn’t – included in the SLA.

If you don’t and your provider doesn’t deliver as promised then, instead of receiving a refund, all you’ll get is a sincere apology.

That’s poor compensation when your people are struggling to raise a support ticket in the first place – or are left waiting for days for someone to get back to them.

So, what should your basic support package look like?

Using our own proven service levels as a benchmark, here are the most fundamental levels of service we believe you should be demanding from your supplier:

  • While many issues can be fixed remotely, you need to be confident your provider can put feet on the ground and come to you if needs must. That applies to consultation meetings too.
  • You should expect to call just one number to get through to the right team – first time, every time.
  • Support personnel should talk your language – in other words, you should be able to discuss your issue with a real person who doesn’t hide behind ‘techno speak’.
  • You should be able to pick and choose the level of support you receive. This isn’t a ‘one size fits all exercise’ – so make sure you’re offered a choice of support cover from 1st to 3rd level.
  • While we’re on support cover – check if your provider can escalate to 3rd party vendors if the need arises, or support your software even if vendors deem it ‘end of life’.
  • Expect to receive bespoke and automated monthly reports which give you detail on incident categorisation, cost per ticket type, and the number of opened and closed tickets.
  • When it comes to change management, your chosen provider should adhere to ITIL frameworks– ensuring every change is assessed, approved, implemented and reviewed.
  • Do they have a dedicated service desk team on hand to investigate incidents in your environment and will they liaise with your IT team on the fix?
  • Can you email, phone or raise tickets 24/7 via a self-service portal?

If you’re struggling to manage an ever-bulging portfolio of systems, platforms and vendors then working with a true support provider – like Portal – could be the answer to your problems.

Perhaps you’re looking to resolve current issues and advance notices. Or need help with patching and feature enhancements. Or simply need support cover for holidays, sickness or extended hours.

The good news is we offer a flexible range of services to sustain and maintain your infrastructure, middleware and business applications.

Click here to find out more.