We’re all in misery together, my friend.
I’m just going to get right to it and say that most of us absolutely hate calling IT or any kind of tech customer service in general. Most of the time, we’re greeted by someone reading from a script that is painfully obvious. Or we’re on the phone with someone who is just an absolute jerk. Or maybe the person is very intelligent but they aren’t overly helpful either.
Whatever the case, customer service in IT really isn’t any different than customer service anywhere else. And I’m about to give you 13 facts about customer service in IT.
Being courteous and friendly to the customer in IT is always a given. I don’t care what industry you’re in, being kind and friendly to your customer is an absolute “duh”.
Just because you’re not in a call center or on a desktop administration team, doesn’t mean that you can throw customer service out the window. Customer service skills spread well over into the infrastructure and network side of the house. Remember when you had to update the HR Director on that bizarre web browsing behavior from that one user? Chances are, you had to present yourself in a professional, kind and caring manner.
The phonetic alphabet is stil lyour friend. Not using it today? Consider adopting the use of a phonetic alphabet. When you’re trying to explain a web URL, or a password to someone over the phone, using the phonetic alphabet can save you a lot of time. And save you from “that URL you gave me doesn’t work!” (at least you can try)
Put on your listening ears. Even if the customer is explaining something to you that you already well know more than they could ever know, be calm and hear them out. This shows that you care about their issue and are willing to take the upmost care in their issue.
Have empathy. I get it, we’ve all changed a million passwords for people, and we’ve all run into the same login issues. To us, this is a very simple mistake that we quickly take for granted. To the customer, this can be very frustrating. Just stay calm, polite, and be helpful. Explain your troubleshooting and solution to them. They’ll appreciate it.We're not really 'omg you're so smart!'. We just know different things than you. We also know how to Google very well.Click To Tweet
We’re not really “omg you’re so smart!”. We just know different things than you. We also know how to Google very well. And when you do something all day every day, chances are, you’re going to become very good in it. Even the newest of IT greenlings can come in like a hero and save the day (thus completely making someone else’s day).
A good IT team will always respond to your ticket and will never let it go down the rabbit hole. Part of our job is to ensure that you’re getting taken care of in your IT needs. We may not always have an answer right away, but we’ll be sure to at least follow up with you to let you know we’re on it. This seems to be rare these days.
99% of the time we’re helping someone who is already frustrated or annoyed. This is because 99% of the time when IT is called, something is broken. Get used to it and this is life now that you’re in IT. We’re all in misery together. One of the best things you can feel is taking that upset customer, and solving their issue to make their day.Printers are literally the worst.Click To Tweet
Printers are literally the worst. Printers will almost always be the most common item in our ticket que. Every printer model is different, different drivers are required, parts are failing all the time, the print spooler is getting stuck. Printers stink. We still need them though in 2018 sadly. Maybe next year.
Be prompt. Being prompt in IT is terribly important. This doesn’t always have to mean that you have to solve every issue right away. That’s unrealistic. What this means is that you can at least respond and follow up with someone fairly quickly. The fact that someone knows you’re helping them (even if all you say is I have your case and I’m looking into it) goes a long way.
Know how to communicate bad news. There are times where we’re the first ones to know something is terribly wrong. A hack. A malware spread. Internet outage or whatever. Know how to communicate this and be sure to include what you know about the issue (without spreading mass panic), as well as what your current plan and intent is to correct the problem.
Have a “we are a team” mindset. This can’t make anyone feel more comfortable about working with IT when they know you’re mission is part of their mission. If their tech gear isn’t working, their mission is not getting carried out. That’s your mission to keep it working (or get it working again).
Lose the ego with your team. Everyone on your IT team is there to support the company and each other. One person with a big head can absolutely ruin the culture of an IT team, which trickles out into the rest of everyone they touch (including outside of IT). Doesn’t matter whether you’re the guy or gal on the phone, or the person architecting and deploying mass, geo-redundant infrastructure. IT solves one need, and that is to leverage technology to scale and grow the company while being secure. And that takes every single one of you.