In so many of my conversations about services delivery, I hear well smart, capable, and hard-working professionals describe how they are setup to resolve service tickets in a short time, and how they always strive to deliver the services in the way they were promised to the customer.
I congratulate them. Building a responsive technical support organization is not trivial, and maintaining that responsiveness, requires professionals to show up when they are needed, every time.
But I say, that today, that’s not enough.
In a world where we can sign up for a service, a subscription, pay as we consume, and be able to leave anytime; customers evaluate their budgets from time to time, and will do away with any services that they don’t use anymore, or -for that matter- that don’t deliver enough value. It has even given rise to a number of apps that, for the consumer, allow to track everything an individual is subscribed to. The only way to maintain a subscriber is by making sure that, not only the service is being delivered as it was promised, but that the customer can use it in the way THEY intend to (not “the way it was intended”), and they derive significant value out of it. To survive -and thrive- in an as-a-service world, ideally we can have our customers cancel everything else, before our service. This requires a different set of skills, and -I may argue- even a different set of values and goals.
So that effort to run a service at 99.999% availability, may not be enough, but it may also be too much.