Help your helpdesk - follow these simple steps to make your support team more efficient with how they use their time.
Prepared responses is the best thing that happened to tech-support since the invention of email. Save your help desk team from having to type out the same replies over and over again. Put up a list of common questions and set up the canned responses. Use a canned response as a "template", as a jumping off point; add some extra text to make the customer feel special.
Publish a searchable FAQ-system. Your canned responses is a good place to start digging for common questions. You know what they say - "the best helpdesk ticket is the one that's never submitted in the first place". Your tech-support team has limited amount of time to deal with incoming requests.
If your website does not have a search engine - use Google's free "Custom Search" module. You can make it look like a native part of your website (check ours at jitbit.com/search).
Another HUGE time-saver is setting up other department managers as "agents" in the helpdesk system, so your tech-support can quickly ask for input or even assign relevant tickets to them. For instance, when your app's email-module breaks down - it might be a good idea to add the module developer to the ticket and ask for assistance.
I know. Your developers (or "sales people", "network engineers", whatever) might start whining "that's not something I was hired to do". Remind them, that "knowing your customer" is a great practice utilized in some of the coolest companies in the world - from 37signals, to Amazon. Even Jeff Bezos - Amazon's CEO/Founder - sits down and answers support emails every now and them. This helps the non-support team-members "get real", feel the customers pain, know how their product is being used in real life, remind them that "sales" is not just reports and numbers, but real people.
By the way, that's also the reason why you should invite your support people to all your important meetings and product-strategy discussions. But that's a topic for a whole other blog post...
"Meetings are toxic", remember? Also, time spent on meetings is time not spent resolving support requests. Your helpdesk team should avoid having meetings just for the sake of having meetings. So delete all your pre-scheduled calendar events, call up a meeting only when circumstances really require it.
Alex has founded Jitbit in 2005 and is a software engineer passionate about customer support.