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www.undertowsoftware.com • View topic - How to get good tech support

How to get good tech support

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How to get good tech support

Postby NoPatience » Mon Sep 16, 2013 12:24 am

The thread about the AOL addresses made me think of this list that someone prepared, when I was working in tech support. I wish users had this list when *I* was on the other end of the line, but it may help others who have a need to call a computer company for support (It actually could apply to calling *any* company for support). Follow these rules and your calling tech support may be a better experience,

Before you call
- Call when you are at your computer and ready to do what the tech support person suggests.
- Use common sense. Too many callers do not. Here's a quick checklist to run down, esp. with hardware problems:
* Is the device on and is everything connected? (you'll be surprised how many time it isn't)
* Have you tried rebooting the computer?

Calling
- In general, tech support is trying to help you. If you immediately ask for the supervisor, you have probably just lessen their eagerness to help you.
- Present a question, not a statement, and not a diatribe about how horrible their product is and how it's useless, and so on... If you start by saying something like, "I have been using this stupid program of yours..." or "this is a piece of &^%#$%..." chances are they will be a bit more reluctant to help you.
- Whenever you call, get to the point as quickly as possible. Also, don't brag, and emphasize how knowledgeable you are about computers and software and how many years you spent in the computer industry. Starting like that, most of the time, tells the support person that you think you know everything and it's going to be an uphill battle to convince them otherwise.
- Don't be arrogant. Remember, if you have to resort to calling tech support, there is something you may not understand. Don't act like a smart guy.
- The tech support persons may not always be right, but error messages on your screen, most of the time are. Tell them the error message exactly.
- When you see an error, write it down. If you write it then, you can tell them the exact error, and they could help you based on the error.
- They have all heard, "Nothing has changed" so often, and it has not been true, that when you say it they immediately know it's probably not true.
- Don't tell tech support how to solve the problem. If you are calling them, chances are your solution doesn't work.
- Don't be abusive. It is understandable that you may be frustrated and upset and you may have spent all sorts of time trying to figure out whatever problem you are having, but being abusive will not get you anywhere. Remember that they do NOT have to take that, they can simple hang up on you, if you are abusive.

Follow these simple rules and your calling tech support experience may be much better.
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Re: How to get good tech support

Postby TedJen » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:29 pm

Nopatience, what you wrote sounds reasonable, but how about tech support people not treating us like we are stupid? There have been many times when I called tech support and I was made to feel totally ignorant and stupid. That shouldn't be either. Just because they know "their" subject better than me, it doesn't mean I don't know *my* subject, whatever that is, a lot better than them!
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Re: How to get good tech support

Postby NoPatience » Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:35 am

Tedjen, I understand your contention and indeed, I am sure that there are tech support people that are just not doing their job. But, as someone that worked in the field for many years, my statistics are skewed. You see, a typical user may have to deal with a support person here-and-there, but let's conservatively say on the average twice a week. And if we assume they deal with a different tech each time, over a year, they would have dealt with ~100 different techs. in my group, on the other hand, esp. early on in my stint as a tech, I was averaging 15 min a call and about 25 callers a day. So over a year I would deal with over 5,000 users (accounting for vacation time, breaks, holidays, etc.). So, my sample size for characterizing the "user" group is much better :-)
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Re: How to get good tech support

Postby cdimaggio » Tue Sep 17, 2013 12:38 pm

It's all about the customer experience. And, if that customer experience is bad, I don't care whose fault it is, you'll lose the customer. It's that simple. That's why successful companies bend over backwards to help customers and came up with the motto that "the customer is always right".
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