Customer support is one of those odd things for a business. It is a direct cost to the business and doesn’t bring in revenue that directly impacts the bottom line, yet customers have high expectations that when something goes wrong, there is someone they can turn to to help them out. Companies that recognise the importance of helping and supporting their customers only stand to benefit.
Without a doubt, customer support is something that is ingrained in the culture at Macrium. Every day, everyone at Macrium is responsible for engaging with our customers and answering queries and technical problems they have. In this blog I wish to share with you how we go about dealing with support and show how we offer what we hope is a unique and excellent experience for our customers.
What we offer
There are several ways that our customers can get help if they are having problems with Macrium Reflect. If it is simply a case of how to do something, then there are a selection of video tutorials on Youtube. They do not have any sound, but this is something we are hoping to address in the future.
There are also many HowTo style articles in our knowledge base as well as some more in-depth articles on error codes that may be encountered, the subtleties of how Reflect handles different types of hardware configurations and some of the more edge case scenarios that may be chanced upon. If you find the knowledge base search a little clunky you can always just use the search at the top right of the main website.
Customers who have bought Macrium Reflect have access to the Macrium Forum. The purpose of the forum is to give Macrium users the opportunity to help each other out as well as share and discuss ideas and concepts about backup and imaging. We regularly check the forum, answering questions and offering solutions to any unanswered posts as quickly as possible.
If a customer is unable to get the solution to their problem from the outlets above, the last stop is to email support directly. We get all sorts of email requests from simple prospective sales questions to in depth technical issues. Regardless of its type, each case is careful reviewed, discussed and more significantly, answered by the software developers who wrote the software.
How we deal with support
Technical support is handled by the software developers who wrote the software. This guarantees that we can offer a qualified answer straight away. There is no triage system. There is no 1st, 2nd, 3rd or nth level support whose primary goal is to either pretend that the people dealing with the customers know what they are talking about when they don’t or delay the customer, hoping they will go away. At Macrium, you get straight through to the experts who can answer the question directly.
Every morning, the development team meet to discuss the support cases that has come in during the night. This gives us the opportunity to discuss specific cases in detail and propose the best solutions. It also allows us to share knowledge throughout the team. The support cases are then assigned to individual engineers who respond directly to the customer. From an engineer’s point of view it is nice to have contact with the people who actually use the software we are writing. Some support issues are also fed back into the product. They may have come about because of a bug in the software or suggest that a part of the product is not clear or easy to use. Since it is the developers dealing with the support issue, a fix can be incorporated back into the product straight away if necessary. Similarly, questions that crop up frequently can be addressed by writing a knowledge base article, improving the knowledge base for our customers and also allowing us to reply with a detailed response in a much more timely and consistent manner.
Some have criticised us for not offering telephone support. On the face of it, this is a fair criticism, but have you ever received good or excellent service from a telephone support line that doesn’t come with a premium price tag? Being put on hold, transferred to another person or department and being fobbed off with scripted answers that doesn’t answer the question are all common place on telephone support lines. This is not the Macrium Way and we feel that by having the time to consider each problem as it arrives by email allows us to provide an answer that is both personal and technically excellent. This is the least we feel our customers deserve.
Without customers, Macrium would not exist and it is our goal to ensure that any customer who encounters a problem with Reflect is answered with a solution as quickly as possible.