Recently we participated in Start-Up Assembly, a French nation-wide event where start-ups open their doors to the public. It inspired our support team to reach out and lift the curtain to how Valiantys Support works. We’ll tell you all about our Atlassian support, from the tools and methodologies we use to the organisational structure!
The support team: from Canada to France
The Valiantys Support team is spread across two offices which are based in Toulouse and Montreal. We consist of several support engineers and one part-time developer: Nicolas, Ida, Nicolas, Fanny, Sebastien and I (Quentin).
Depending on the needs of our clients, several different consultants can join this core team to extend and reenforce the desired skills.
Playing with time zones to ensure ongoing service
With a widespread reach, Valiantys has offices in France, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Canada and a recently added office in the Netherlands.
At Valiantys, a typical support contract with no additional options covers a timeframe from 8:00 to 18:00, five days a week despite the original country where it was sold. With clients in different countries and different time zones…do you follow where this is going?
To answer this need and guarantee we meet our SLAs, we organise a turnover between the team members. Thus we ensure quality service regardless of what time it is in Europe or the Americas!
Working as one global team spread across two sites also allows us to offer our customers extended hours of support, as an added option. Pretty practical, don’t you think?
Support levels N1 and N2
The vast majority of tickets are managed by support agents. However our customers sometimes have more complex requests that require a different skillset, such as needing support or asking for a feature request on a Valiantys add-on. This is when the level N2 support comes into play.
Our tools: the Atlassian suite
JIRA Service Desk: customer portal and ticketing
Using JIRA Service Desk as the point of contact for our customers was obviously commonsense to us! The customer portal allows us to centralise requests in French or English with the Translation for JIRA Service Desk add-on.
Once requests are created, their prioritization is automatically managed by the tool thanks to the Service Level Agreements (SLAs). These SLAs are automatically adjusted depending on the type of contract, country and calendar linked to the customer (UTC+0 – UK, UTC+1 – France, UTC-5 – Québec).
Our support teams then take turns to ensure continuous support. The configuration of JIRA Service Desk is complemented by some additional automations to help solve requests: automated transitions on a customer comment, automated closing after 20 days without a customer answer, etc.
Confluence: our knowledge base
In order to capitalise on the issues faced by our customers, we regularly fill in a knowledge base space in Confluence which is shared with the whole team.
Some customers also benefit from their support package with a dedicated Confluence space designed to share specific documentation or processes.
Finally, the space we use the most is the one that gathers customers information. It allows us to quickly retrieve useful information to resolve an issue.
HipChat: instant messaging to facilitate team collaboration
Within the team, communication goes through multiple channels yet HipChat remains the hub to chat with my colleagues in Toulouse and Montreal.
We use it in various manners to:
- Chat with a customer on one of his requests in a dedicated room
- Track the progresses of a request which another team member has taken into account
- Ask questions to one of our account managers concerning the renewal of a customer license
- Get advice from our software team to guide a customer on his use of our add-ons
- Conduct our weekly meetings thanks to the video-conferencing feature
Managing critical requests with JIRA Alert
I could not write this article without introducing the latest innovation of Valiantys Software: JIRA Alert!
We don’t spend our days constantly staring at the ticket queue as we work. Let’s imagine I am in the middle of a configuration for a customer and it’s been 30 minutes. A blocking request comes in – the customer environment is down. The JIRA Alert automatically notifies us by producing sounds and flashing lights.
Instantly the whole team has the problem on its radar and organises to solve the blocking requests. Thus I am certain to never miss an emergency.
Management and customer reporting
Internal monthly management meeting
Every month, our management team gathers to asses the state of activity. It reviews key metrics: time effectively spent resolving requests, average resolution time, SLA overspent, etc.
For instance, did you know that over the past 6 months, 80% of requests were closed in less than 24 hours?
Whenever a problem is raised, a root cause analysis is led and we adapt our organisation to solve it.
KPIs: what do we show our customers?
Every month, we send our customers a list of tickets created during the month. Recently we started working on setting up more advanced reporting with analytical reports. Here is a sneak preview of what it will look like:
As an option on our Unlimited Support, you can also benefit from a monthly analysis of the support activity.
A final word
We’ve been happy to share what goes on at Valiantys Support! Our doors remain open for your needs – If you’re convinced you would like to work with us or just want to discuss your options a bit more, feel free to get in touch with our team.
We will be happy to solve your tickets! Unless there are a lot of them that are really complex and urgently needed – just kidding! We’ll take everything that you’ve got!