Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 2:41 am Post subject: Problem procces with a VERY difficult customer!
I'm a contractor and have taken up assignment as a Problem Manager in a large outsourcing organisation to help improve the process and relations with a customer.
Don't want to make this long winded but I've implemented problem a number of times in Blue Chip organisations and small companies but I have never ever had the difficulties I have had here with implementation.
I have a customer who believes a P1 and P2 incidents (1000+ a month) should also be a P1 Urgent problem and dealt with immediately. Any escalation also requires a P1 problem investigation. Also the customer wants daily or on demand problem updates on problem actions and has direct contact in the support team environment.
As you can probably tell the customer is quite demanding and is taking a strain on our team of 4 PM's (1 new to PM)
I need your help:
Has anyone had these issues before?
Does anyone know of anyway through SLA's or whatever I can pin this customer down as currently we are very reactive, with no bandwidth to go proactive. Also very stressed!!
I seem to be in a similiar situation but not that very fussy i guess .
For my customer, we persuaded them to have a atleast ITIL foundation level representative who understands the real essence of problem management. It seemed very improtant to make them understand the risk/issues if problems are pushed so hard for closure.
Our prioritization of problem tickets is based on impact and urgency of the problem and out of P1, P2 & P3, we agreed to have P2 as the highest priority among problems.
To start with, you may prioritize major problems and take them to closure to show imrpovements.
A push back might be the resource crunch or the effort involved in catering to a large volume of P1 problems (demand management).
Joined: Oct 26, 2007 Posts: 295 Location: Calgary, Canada
Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2008 9:07 am Post subject:
Well... one way to mitigate this is to involve customer into the process and show them how much of it will be THEIR responsibility, time and money. I bet you dollars to donuts the requiremetns list will get trimmed down pretty quickly
Yep - common enough. Yes you can have all their requests handled they way the want but put together the cost of providing this to the customer and at the same time you demonstrate the best practice approach and you can generally get then to side with the best approach.
Bottom lin eher eis the more you want the more it will cost as we need more people,. If they wont pay and expect this level of service quality will drop - and that does no one any good. _________________ Mark O'Loughlin
ITSM / ITIL Consultant
I'd go with Timo - make it as difficult for him as he is making it for you.
Also produce the data that shows what value (or not!) is being added by all this complexity.
Finally, rework your P1 defintions so that fewer issues fall into this category. Many P1 issues are not really as serious t the business as that rating suggests, but you cannot 'see the wood for the trees' until you thin these out. Without knowing your business, 1000 P1 & P2 suggests there is room for adjustment here - unless service really is on its knees!!
Ha! This is precisely why my pseudenom is 'Urgent Jensen'.
A few years ago when I was a Service Desk Manager I used to deal with a guy called Jensen who would bombard me directly with emails where the title was always 'URGENT URGENT!!!!', and every email was WRITTEN IN RED CAPITIAL LETTERS BECAUSE THAT OBVIOUSLY MAKES THINGS HAPPEN FASTER.
These email could be "MY OFFICE IS ON FIRE" right down to "IS THERE A SHORT CUT KEY FOR PASTING" or something equally trivial.
Eventually I just started to referring to him as Urgent Jensen and it taught me the most important lesson and paradox about work flow:
IF EVERYTHING IS URGENT THEN NOTHING IS URGENT. (the caps are in his honour).
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