We’ll often mention our support queue when dealing with customers but I suspect we rarely explain what it is, or why we use it.
A support queue is a way of managing incoming requests and prioritising them so that those with the most need get (Things that are broken) dealt with first, and those that can afford to wait (Things you would like) still get dealt with in a timely manor.
We use a system called Zendesk for this, its used by over 110,000 businesses world wide (as of 2021) ranging from small ones like us, to massive ones like Uber and Pinterest.
It probably helps to think of requesting support like visiting A&E, as we have all done that at some time.
Step 1 : Reception, You go to reception and tell them what the problem is, in our world this is emailing our support email address, as this automatically puts your request in Zendesk. You can try requesting help in other ways, shouting through the window, walking up to a doctor performing CPR and demanding they look at your ingrowing toenail but these wont necessarily get you seen sooner, in fact there is a good chance it will cause you to wait further.
For us this is Facebook messages, text messages, WhatsApp’s etc as they are not connected to Zendesk and introduce the possibility or human error, i.e. I may have read your Facebook message at midnight, but chances are I wont be at my computer to log it, and when I do sit down at my desk I will have forgotten.
When your ticket is logged you’ll automatically get an email saying we have it, and reiterating our SLA’s (Service Level Agreements), basically if it’s broken, we’ll try and fix it within a day, if it’s something you want changed we will try to do it within a week. If you do know in advance when you want something done then the more notice you can give, the more likely it is to get done on time. This is like making an appointment to see a specialist rather than just showing up.
Step 2 : Triage, this is where we decide who gets seen first, we would love to say we deal with requests in the order the come in but sometimes that just isn’t possible, going back to our hospital metaphor someone who is having a heart attack (website down) is going to take priority over someone with a cold (asking for us to update next year’s Christmas newsletter… in March).
Step 3 : Be a patient patent.
Although it may be tempting to ask if it’s done yet, before the SLA is up, This isn’t going to bump you up the queue, if anything it slows things down as we now have to deal with your new query rather than the queue of tickets that includes your old one.
Conclusion : The quickest way to get help is to email the support address