Customer Success Leadership Community

Responding to Support Tickets: Internal and Customer-Facing Processes

  • 1.  Responding to Support Tickets: Internal and Customer-Facing Processes

    Posted 17 days ago
    Hi everyone,

    I'm fairly new at a small technology company, serving as the Director of Customer Success. I've discovered a significant gap in our process for handling customer support tickets. I'd appreciate hearing how others manage the process from an internal perspective and from a customer-facing perspective.

    Here's the situation:
    Support for our legacy products has been managed a certain way that seems adequate for the type of product and the issues reported by customers. We recently launched a new product, and have another product in development, that serve a different customer segment and the impact of a problem, bug, or functionality failure can be more severe. The team that initially triages a support ticket can resolve most legacy product issues directly, but they cannot do so for the new products. Those problems must be handled by the developers (who report to the CTO).

    There has been no definition of incident severity and no clear process for handling support tickets for the new products. I drafted a process that identifies 4 levels of severity, with examples for each, and the expected internal response/response time. For example, Severity Level 1, Critical: the ticket must be updated (within Jira) within 30 minutes with a status of In Progress/Requires Development and assigned to someone on the team. Basic stuff.

    What's missing are the requirements for the assigned person(s) to provide status updates. Currently it's like a black hole and communication back to me, so I can update the customer, is lacking. Customers don't appreciate "we're working on it" for very long.  Do any of you set parameters for this, by incident severity level? For example, for Sev 1 tickets initial troubleshooting update will be provided back to CS within 4 hours. I understand it takes time to investigate and every scenario can be different, but shouldn't there be some guidelines for accountability?


    Bridget Lamb
    Director of Customer Success

  • 2.  RE: Responding to Support Tickets: Internal and Customer-Facing Processes

    Posted 4 days ago
    Hi Bridget,

    Let's get to the point straight - handling support tickets for your new (& upcoming) product line.

    I appreciate you already have a clear demarcation between the technical support & developers.

    In our organization, support triages all tickets and closes whatever they can by answering customers. All of these are functional cases in nature. 
    - we use SFDC for communication with customers.

    During their triage, if they found that the issue needs a code fix, or any other development is required, they then push it to the development team. However, they will still take the owner for the ticket, which means they own communication with the customer and helps dev engineer in scheduling call with customer, etc.
    - Our dev team uses JIRA, and there is a sort of integration between our SFDC & JIRA.

    Coming to prioritization & responses part.

    All our tickets are prioritized like this - P0 (outages), P1, P2 & P3.

    We have different response timelines for each priority, and as each day pass, the scores for the ticket get added accordingly. The scores help in getting the manager's attention (both support mgmt or dev mgmt).

    Usually speaking, we need to update every day to customers on P1 tickets.

    In addition, there are some daily calls between support & dev teams (managers or directors), where they discuss the priority tickets and status. This helps in prioritizing any escalated issues/customers.

    Even with all these in place, we still do face a lot of difficulties in giving meaningful responses to customers every time.

    Let me know if you are looking for any specific answers.



  • 3.  RE: Responding to Support Tickets: Internal and Customer-Facing Processes

    Posted 3 days ago
    Thanks Surendranath. I appreciate hearing how another organization is operating. I think I'm on the right path here.

    Bridget Lamb
    Director of Customer Success