Help Desk Administration

Best Practices in Tech Support

Good tech support doesn’t just improve an end user’s day—it’s also helpful to the entire business’s productivity and bottom line. Based on years of experience, technical support professionals and executives have collected several best practices. Put them into use at your help desk today.

Jennifer Lonoff Schiff writes, “No product or service—or end user—is perfect. This is especially true when it comes to hardware and software. That is why companies, if they want to stay in and grow their business, need to provide help to customers when things go wrong. And while no two products or problems are exactly alike, the best tech support departments share the following eight traits.

“1. Offer multi-channel tech support, including live chat. ‘The ubiquity of instant communication channels has meant that people want to get the support they want, whenever they want and through whatever method is most convenient,’ says Amir Farhi, vice president, strategic alliances & business development, WalkMe. ‘Rather than relying [just] on email and phone communications, businesses should provide [tech support via] social media channels, [live chat] and messaging apps such as WhatsApp.’ They should also ‘make sure [tech support representatives] are readily available and trained to use all channels.’

“2. Don’t keep customers waiting. No one likes to be kept waiting, or feel ignored, especially when they have a critical (or minor) problem that needs fixing. And when you have an issue, even an hour can seem like an eternity.

“So to keep customers from becoming upset (or more upset) and potentially taking out their anger online, make sure your tech support channels are properly staffed. If you don’t have someone available to ‘speak’ to a customer right away, give them the option of leaving a message or having someone call or email them back when someone is free, within 24 hours or a business day.

“Similarly, if a rep can’t provide a customer with an immediate answer or help to a question or problem, make sure they get back to or follow up with the customer the next business day.”

Read on for all eight tech support best practices.