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Old Ways, New Ways (or just set in our ways!)

By Robert Hall, Support Analyst, Marval


People are usually set in their ways. When they go to work every morning, they expect to enter a familiar work environment and deal with conditions they are used to. Surprises or big changes are not generally welcomed, and that is true for most of us!


So, what happens when a new Service Management tool is introduced? In many cases, the users will automatically compare the new environment with the way they used to work (either with their previous tool or without an integrated Service Management solution) and try to identify (or even disapprove of) the differences.


That’s actually the case with the introduction of any new tool in a business environment. Here’s an example: Recently, I was listening to my wife describe the progress of the use of a well-known ERP software solution at her place of work. The situations and difficulties she described stuck a chord in two ways:


·      Firstly, having been involved in software implementation, I could see how similar the users’ reaction was. When a new system comes in (whether an ERP, a CRM or an Enterprise Service Management solution), the opportunity is often taken by users, or attempted if they are given free reign, to bend the way the product works and for example come up with a long list of reporting requirements, because ‘the old system did this’, or ‘the old system could never do this, can yours….?’.

·      The second way (now that I am working at a software supplier) is to hear about these questions and try to consider if they are actually of benefit – could there be an enhancement that our customer (potentially others, as well) would benefit from? Or is there an existing way to achieve the requirement that the customer has not actually seen?


Just like the users are set in their ways, the same applies to vendors. Vendors don’t like changes any more than users like them! Working at Marval I have realised though that customers are always looking for a tool which can be customised to fit in their environment, processes and particular needs; and it’s our job to provide it to them. Customers shouldn’t have to work their way around a pre-defined solution, but expect the solution to embrace their way of working and accommodate their actual needs.


At the end of the day, customer service is all about catering for the customer’s needs and ensuring they enjoy a positive experience. And that can only happen if we are prepared to leave our comfort zone and set ways, work together with the customer to build the solution the users really need, and help them make a real impact.

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