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The 5 dimensions of excellent ITSM: where can you step up your game?

Our most recent edition of TOPdesk SEE took place on 15 June. And what a blast it was! Want to stay in the loop about our next event? Subscribe for TOPdesk SEE updates.

How does your service department score in terms of customer experience? Do you have a clear picture of the specific areas where you’re outperforming? What about the ones where you still have room to grow?

At this year's edition of TOPdesk SEE, keynote speakers, ITSM thought leaders and CX experts will share their secrets to customer happiness. But first, you need to know where to focus your efforts.

To help you get started, we're going to break down the 5 key dimensions of service excellence so you can determine what you need to work on to bring your customers the most value.

5 focus areas for happier customers

When it comes to creating the optimal experience for your customers, knowing where to start can be tricky. To make your next steps clearer, we’ve highlighted 5 key focus areas in which service departments should be aiming to improve.

Let's say you’re performing well in terms of People & Culture, but you’re lagging behind when it comes to Integration & Automation. In order to grow and become more customer-oriented as a service department, you need to make sure each of the 5 dimensions gets enough attention.

1. People & Culture

How would you describe the culture within your department? Does each individual understand their role and how they contribute to your shared goals? Or are you still working in silos?

If you're confident that people in your team are maximizing their strengths to create the most customer value, that's a good sign! But if people are more used to a reactive approach and they shy away from conflicts, you still have some work to do here.

2. Process

Is your department's way of working structured around reactive management? Or do you work with streamlined standard processes, which are inherently customer-oriented? Are your customers’ biggest pain-points reflected in your innovations?

The aim here is to structure your processes around your customers’ needs. Are you using customer input as your starting point? Then you're on the right track. Still feel like you're firefighting? It could be time to level-up your processes.

3. Integration & Automation

Which kinds of technology does your service department use? Are employees still relying on basic tools like ticketing and email to get the job done? Or have you made more time for customers by seamlessly integrating all service applications and automating repetitive tasks?

Handling ad hoc requests via ticketing or email can seriously slow down your processes. Sound familiar? By fully automating all service tasks and integrating your systems, you'll free up more time to innovate and improve your customer experience.

4. Customer

How are service desk employees communicating with your customers? Are classic channels like email, telephone, or in-person support still the norm? Or have you mapped out your Customer Journeys and aligned people, process, and tools to give end users a smooth experience?

If your customers don't feel like they're being heard, you're bound to run into problems. The goal is to create a continuous feedback loop so that you can improve and adapt your service delivery to fit your customer's needs. And remember: Self-sufficient customers are happy customers. If an end user has an issue that's an easy fix, they should be able to solve it by themselves.

5. Supplier

How does your service department work with external suppliers? Is the communication patchy, with minimal visibility? Or have you built long-term relationships, with optimal collaboration? And are your systems fully integrated with those of your suppliers?

Rather than spending time monitoring suppliers’ execution, you should be aiming to work together to optimize your service delivery for the customer. Does outsourcing parts of your service catalogue still feel like a chore? Sounds like you need to work on turning your relationships with suppliers into partnerships.

Bring it back to the customer

When it comes to optimizing within a specific dimension, you need to involve your customers from the get-go. Find out what they expect, which improvements they would like to see and let these insights inform any changes you make moving forward. When you involve your customers, you’re not just getting invaluable feedback and insights, but you're also making them feel heard. It’s the first step any service department can take towards becoming a valuable business partner.

Service excellence starts at TOPdesk SEE

Now that you’ve got a clearer picture of how your service department is scoring in each of the 5 key areas, it’s time to get the practical skills and knowledge you need to take your next steps. Each of the keynotes at this year’s online edition of TOPdesk SEE will focus on 1 or more of the 5 dimensions of service excellence. Think about where you'd most like to grow and join the sessions that will help you bring the most value to your customers.

Process: Want to help your team get creative, innovate and work smarter for your customers? Former Disney head of Innovation and Creativity Duncan Wardle has got you covered.

People & Culture: If you feel like you still have some work to do to make your culture more customer-centric, tune in to Corporate Anthropologist Jitske Kramer’s keynote, which will explore the topics of diversity, inclusion, and how to turn your team’s differences into strengths.

Integration & Automation: Still firefighting requests via email and spending too much time on repetitive tasks? Tune in to hear mathematician and broadcaster Hannah Fry discuss the benefits and drawbacks of modern technology like AI and learn how it can help you help your customers.

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