What’s In Your Service Centre? Technology When You Want It… But What Else Do You Get?

December 7, 2011

It’s become a daily observation, maybe hour to hour, how much the world of customer service and support has changed.  From the credit card companies and the airlines we deal with on a personal level, to the vendors that provide solutions our businesses, we see continued change (especially in their use of technology) to improve service and support.  Of course technology can make life easier but, is it really the single most important aspect of service and support?  Many vendors roll out state-of-the-art CRM systems to leverage technology and use it as the hub of how they work with their clients.  Then we find out, usually sooner rather than later, that it’s really a replacement for what was, and what should be, a people centric service model.  The result in too many scenarios,  low scale support with technology ‘bells and whistles’ that just don’t cut it and,  more importantly, that don’t deliver the high-caliber service clients deserve.

PORTIA views the world of support differently.  We have a genuine “client -not a customer” mentality.  Our business depends on the relationship we have with our clients.  Customers can come and go (like at the local retail auto parts store).  Clients though…. clients are with us for the duration, if we service and support them properly.   Bottom line: PORTIA believes that our people are the key to building successful business relationships and real long-term partnerships with our clients.

From this mind-set the concept of the PORTIA Service Centre was created.   It is uniquely PORTIA and is a major change in how we deliver service to our clients.  The planned result: a differentiated model which will be recognized as the best middle-to-back-office client experience in the industry. 

Earlier this year we began the implementation of the Service Centre with a phased approach that included a redesigned support structure, new operational processes, targeted staffing and new infrastructure.   Since people are the focus, the PORTIA Service Centre starts with a dedicated Client Operations Manager, who is business and industry experienced, knows their clients’ operations and is committed to making sure PORTIA is optimized to the way they work.  Add to that, an expert product support team that averages 10 years of PORTIA experience per person as well as deep industry experience, and you have a team of the experts working for each client. To complement the relationship and support teams, we enhanced our infrastructure with a new CRM/Client Portal system that allows easy access to information and case management for our clients.

By mid-summer we had hired and trained our staff, documented our processes, converted from the legacy CRM system, trained our internal users, presented the portal solution to clients – and went live.  Now over 90% of our cases are being entered via the Client Portal.  As CRM implementations go historically (some industry periodicals quote that 50 to 80 % of CRM projects fail) this has been a big success to date.  Most importantly, our clients are seeing the difference and  the results are more than anecdotal.  In the last three months we have reduced open support cases by more than 80%.  Ultimately we are now spending more time with clients, working with them as business partners and delivering the “people- based” support that helps our clients achieve more from their investment in PORTIA. 

So when you consider your current or potential software solutions for 2012 and beyond, and what your current vendors offer for service, remember that not only is PORTIA reliable, secure and proven, we also offer the PORTIA Service Centre,  global client support – second to none.   Now that makes a difference.

To learn more about the PORTIA Service Centre, visit our website.

– Paul Leone, Director, PORTIA Client Support


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