Support tickets are the primary way that users communicate incidents and problems. This is why it is important for businesses to understand the support ticket lifecycle, as well as the interventions and tools that can speed up the resolution process.
To help businesses understand how they can improve, we are going to cover:
The support ticket lifecycle
How to improve ticket resolution efficiency
How to get started
“…Service desks must anticipate and prevent IT issues before they happen. In a word, they need to be proactive, not reactive. And when future progress makes our current technology look as simple as the Apollo 11 computer, this proactive approach to IT support will allow service desks to keep pace.” – Vaibhav Nivargi, Forbes Councils Member, Forbes Technology Council
The Support Ticket Lifecycle
The support ticket lifecycle is the path that tickets take from their submission all the way through to their resolution. The journey is not always linear, and deviations are possible on the way to a resolution. As a result, support tickets may pass back and forth between a few of the steps.
Typically, the support ticket lifecycle looks similar to the process outlined below:
Ideally, tickets are submitted, opened by an agent, and resolved by that agent. However, many tickets take some time and communication between the client and a support associate before a resolution is found.
Here, “pending” and “on-hold/postponed” tags become relevant.
“Pending” tickets have been opened and responded to, but the user has not yet confirmed the resolution. This can be because they returned with another question, expressed that the issue remains, or simply have not responded.
“On-hold” or “postponed” tickets have been set aside until a certain condition is met due to an extenuating circumstance. Oftentimes, these tags are applied when something is required from a third party. The “on-hold” tag clarifies that the ticket doesn’t require any action from the support agent assigned to it or the client that submitted it.
How To Improve Ticket Resolution Efficiency
There are a few ways to improve efficiency in the support ticket lifecycle and speed up the resolution process:
Improve the organization of support tickets by implementing a system that can categorize and route them to the proper agent automatically, as well as clearly label and prioritize them with tags signifying the ticket’s urgency and the lifecycle stage.
Expedite processes by creating custom workflows for every category of ticket, providing agents with clear steps to follow depending on the type of incident or problem they seek to resolve. This is also accomplished by automating and streamlining information gathering and delivery.
Track & Adapt
Follow the success of these measures with a metric tracking tool like Average Time Before First Response, Average Hours to Resolution, and SLA On-Target % to identify where improvements need to be made.
By implementing these improvements, the support ticket lifecycle can be shortened and user satisfaction increased. Each improvement plays a vital role, but they are significantly more effective when applied together.
It is best to search for holistic solutions that can accomplish all three improvements at once. Additionally, a high-quality CSM software solution improves other aspects of the service experience, like self-service portals, comprehensive knowledgebases, and service catalogs that help guide users to the answers they need before even having to submit a ticket.
Improve the Support Ticket Lifecycle With Vivantio
To leverage the benefits outlined in this article, managers must choose a platform with the right feature set. Vivantio provides a cutting-edge customer service software platform that offers all of the benefits listed above and more, including:
Integrations to make implementation easy
Automatic ticket routing to ensure every ticket reaches the proper agent
Workflow designer tool that allows managers without technical knowledge to customize the framework of their CS operations
White-label service portals so businesses can maintain a cohesive brand throughout the service process
A holistic view of each client to ensure that no agent is left without vital information
For businesses that are ready to level up their customer experience, Vivantio’s highly configurable solutions deliver.
For more than two decades, Vivantio has been helping clients optimize their service organizations by leveraging a uniﬁed service management platform. To find out how Vivantio can help you improve help desk ticket workflows, contact our team today or register for a free demo.