As businesses have had to adapt to working during a global pandemic, the customer experience has become more important than ever before. Organizations have had to pivot in how we provide traditionally in-person customer support and professional services like training and site installations.
When your organization is forced to become an all-remote workforce, what are the factors that will make-or-break your customer support experience?
Flexibility becomes paramount when business travel grinds to a halt
Enabling remote work at Qumulo was the easiest part. Half of our customer success engineering team is remote anyway, and thanks to our partnerships with Slack and Zoom, we are able to have instant-on video conversations to make everything easy for our customers.
Our professional services team underwent the biggest shift due to the pandemic-related travel ban. Typically, these team members meet in-person with new customers for orientation, walk them through the configuration of their new file data platform, and then ensure that they can be writing files to their Qumulo clusters on the same day.
That became a challenge when on-site support was no longer possible. We found ourselves having to walk customers through an end-to-end hardware and software install remotely, from unpacking the boxes, rack-and-stacking the nodes, configuring the network switches, and creating the clusters.
Our customers were amazingly resilient with this change and our professional services team was able to make a seamless transition to remote installation, configuration, and orientations. While nothing replaces a face-to-face interaction, these days the power of instant communications and access to experts cannot be understated.
Keeping Customers As Your Magnetic Field
At Qumulo, our values define who we are and one of our key values is that our customers are our magnetic field. Everything we do is with our customers’ success in mind. It’s this unique approach that has enabled our Customer Success team to continue serving our customers around the world, even during a pandemic.
For example, often the first call to a competitor’s support team goes to a phone answering service somewhere in the world and then customers are put through a tiered support process. There’s paperwork involved to get you to get to the next level of support, and customers still won’t get an answer in days or maybe weeks depending on how internal routing goes.
Our customer success team only hires experts. When you contact Qumulo on your dedicated Qumulo Care Slack channel, it is manned by Level 4 or 5 support resources. So you’re speaking directly with an expert that can help you solve your problem, immediately. Our team consistently delivers value; we don’t make our customers suffer to get answers to “How do i?” questions and “I’m in trouble!” questions.
Building a customer success team: What we look for at Qumulo
The number one skill we look for in candidates is customer empathy – that’s a skill that has to be in your DNA.
Another common denominator is the desire to serve. You have to wake up, jump out of bed, and want to help our customers solve problems, and be more successful with their Qumulo file system. That type of engagement is a hard thing to train for, and it’s often the difference between a good and bad customer experience. Are you just checking off boxes to get the customer off the phone as fast as possible? Or are you passionate and curious about what else we can be helping them with?
As my colleague Alan Delagado wrote last year:
“Our customers are aware that they will have the Qumulo Success team to support them through thick and thin. Our customers see us as people that have been in the trenches with them, and teammates that are more than happy to help in any situation that arises. We take pride in handling issues from start to finish. To us, this is really what it means to be focused on Customer Success. Issues happen, but how we react to them is truly what matters and leaves a lasting impression.”