Wednesday, April 06, 2005

It's not a bug - it's an added feature...

Here's a good article from Signal vs. Noise: An observation about tech support.

As someone who is often on the support end, yet works with users day in and day out, I can't tell you how often both the technician and the user walk away from an issue, each thinking the other is an complete idiot. And, each one of them has reason to believe just that. Truth is, we speak different languages.

You don't know how to tell us what we need to know and we don't know how to ask you for it.

In order for us to get the information we need, you either feel grilled or have to jump through hoops to provide us with all of the relevant information.

How do we make this more comfortable for everyone involved? I know for a fact that my friends and family have no problem telling me to repeat what I said "in English" when they ask me a technical question. And I usually can relay the same message in terms they are comfortable with. That, or tell them they will never get it and just have to take my word for it. But that's not really acceptable in a professional relationship... is it?

3 comments:

Just me said...

LOL!

If anyone could get away with that attitude at work, I have a feeling it would be you, girl!

Sam said...

Wait a minute. Isn't your job to make sure the users get what they want from the software? So, aren't YOU the answer? Not just you, but other people LIKE you?

Linda said...

Umm... Well, yeah - on a more global scale, but it's not like every help desk or tech support guy can have a shelf full of product managers ready to answer every question every time someone can't get logged in or has difficulty finding what they want. And a lot of those problems are something that a programmer needs to look into, but can't figure out unless it can be duplicated, which even when the user has documented the issue, isn't always possible. That's part of the problem...