You’ve done it. You had a product vision and now the vision is reality. Hours, weeks, months of work are finally realized and you’ve delivered a product that considered the user experience every step of the way. It’s time to celebrate! There’s only one problem. However well-planned and thoughtful your product is, IT product relies on technology and we all know technology can be squirrely. What happens now? Is your support desk up to the task of world-class support with the user’s experience in focus? Can they clearly articulate the value and vision of the product and inform your users of the usability or design choices made along the way? How do you get there?
Your work begins long before the client ever sees the product. Bring the developers, UX/UI designers, and the support staff together for product testing. Hand the support team the beta and give them license to go crazy trying to break it. They will love it! And probably break it, if they know their users. The end result will be a support team that knows the product inside and out, its strengths and its limitations far before beta testing begins in the wild, much less your soft launch. They can begin creating documentation, cementing that knowledge and preparing training resources for the end client well ahead of beta release.
Look at where you are most successful in the onboarding process and why. What part(s) of onboarding new clients makes them feel Yes! We’re ready to go. Is it webinars? Personalized demos? Self-help or guided online help? Think about if it makes sense to utilize some or all of these methods to encourage product adoption.
It’s been said that each time you interrupt a developer, it takes them 15 minutes to get back on task so our desk tries to be respectful of their time. Something that works very well in our organization for new product launches is dedicated channels in the company messaging application. Everyone in the organization has access to the channel, anyone can report issues, feedback, learn about bugs and fixes, big wins, and stay up to date. Our developers are wonderfully giving of their time and don’t hesitate to respond at any hour if support needs them urgently. Giving the support desk a view into their challenges (and vice versa) reinforces the interconnectedness that produces confident, knowledgeable, experienced agents. Before you’ve even rolled out the beta.
It goes without saying (well actually we say it a lot!) that the user’s experience is at the forefront of everything we do. Whether it’s designing an interface from the user’s perspective, to development decisions that will shape how the product performs, to how we prepare our support team to understand the new product well before soft launch. Our mission is to create a hiring experience that doesn’t suck. We can’t stand behind that if we’ve not constantly striving to create a support experience that doesn’t suck either.
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