SaaS support: The 5 factors of an effective team

Bianca Compagnoni
9 Dec
Reading time: 9 minutes
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We’ve all been there. Waiting on hold for what feels like a century, only to hear the robotic pre-recorded voice repeating those soul-crushing words: Thank you for waiting, a customer representative will be with you shortly. Cue the chirpy piano office music. 

Or worse. You’ve been on hold for almost two hours only to hear our phone disconnect. All hell breaks loose at that point, am I right? I plead guilty to that most definitely. At the end of the day, we’re simply asking for support with a product we’ve purchased. 

When we think about purchasing a product, we follow the traditional process like any other customer. The business sells the product, as customers we purchase the product, we use the product, it serves its purpose (hopefully), and nothing changes. Sounds pretty straight forward.  

Now, when it comes to software as a service (SaaS) companies, their product and service don’t just stop at the checkout. SaaS customers like yourself are in most cases paying monthly for a product and using it every day. Meanwhile, the product is constantly evolving. 

Customers start sending emails that start off with, ‘What is this?’ and ‘How do I use it?’ Who responds to these customers, and how is it managed? 

What should come with any SaaS company is a reputable SaaS support team. Knowing what that looks like when purchasing from a SaaS company can be a challenge. 

There are five key elements that make up an effective SaaS support team, which should be factored in when deciding whether or not to purchase a SaaS product. 

What defines great SaaS support?

Like any customer service experience, we want the best, and deep down we want to feel acknowledged and appreciated. That being said, not all SaaS company support is created equal.

Defining what this looks like is simple. A good SaaS support team is:

  • Reliable
  • Dependable
  • Knowledgeable
  • Organised
  • Empathetic
  • Understanding
  • Resourceful 

Above all, they are willing to resolve any issue a customer throws at them. Having said that, while you could find a SaaS support specialist that embodies all the above, it’s the team that carries it through. 

Each support team specialist will have their strengths, and a SaaS support team should use that to their advantage when assigning tickets and tasks for each member. More on this later. 

When looking for software as a service,  there are many factors to be aware of. These include the product itself, features, the cost plan, integrations, data migration and implementation, the service level agreement (SLA), training and of course the support they provide. 

“Let’s face it, no one wants to reach out to support and ask for help for any product. I know I don’t. It’s our goal to assist our client’s needs and move away from a negative experience to a more accessible, speedy, accurate and positive result,” explained Jez Louise, JobAdder’s Head of Support. 

“When I’m looking at a new product for our global team, the regional and global support hours, CSAT (customer satisfaction) and full-resolution time are what I focus on. I know then it’s a partner that’s going to align with our company and support ethos,” she added.

Here are the 5 factors to be aware of when looking for a reliable and effective SaaS support team. 

The five factors of a successful SaaS support team

1. Accessibility

Having access to your support team is vital for any organisation when a situation requires immediate resolution. Long gone are the days of simply contacting a company via phone or fax, (remember those things?). Today it’s about accessibility through multi-channel services such as phone, email, live chat or social media.

It’s not difficult for a support team to have an omnichannel approach to their services, but having one that is consistent and efficient in using this approach is critical.  

Through this, support channels should also have some self-service guides or templates that they can send to users or direct them to within the platform. Once you’ve made contact via phone or live chat to solve your problem, a SaaS support team should be able to send you directly to the appropriate self-help articles, guides and FAQs. 

Accessibility is “about making sure you offer a truly inclusive and accessible platform. With this passion, JobAdder offers 24/6 support via an omnichannel support platform. This allows our clients and partners to access support in a time frame that suits them and via the platform they prefer,” said Jez.  

This includes phone, email, live chat, in-product guided help tutorials and self-help articles.  

“By offering our clients in-product guided help tutorials, it allows them to learn a product within their own data and workflow. This often makes so much more sense then videos,” said Jez. She further added that “you need your own real data for that to be retained in your head.” 

If you’re looking for a SaaS product, does that company provide you with this option?  

IS that support widget easy to find? A good support team will ensure their widget is easy to see. It shouldn’t be tucked away in a corner but instead, clear in sight with its own landing page of information and sources. 

2. Customer feedback 

Would you agree that seeing a company display their customer feedback would entice you to look further into their SaaS support team and platform as a whole? 

With JobAdder, “every single, support query received a feedback request. We own that; good or bad,” said Jez. This is displayed through JobAdder’s Support Twitter channel.  

Another fun feature that JobAdder Support has implemented is their internal love ticket board, where the team competes to get the best love ticket. “It’s an oldie but a goodie,” said Jez jokingly. She might be winning this month actually! 

It’s helpful and beneficial for a company and its users to ask for and accept customer feedback. Find a SaaS support team who does this. 

3. Speed and accuracy 

Time is money, and waiting for support to get back to you can not only be frustrating and stressful but could impact your system. A SaaS support team that has a quick response and resolution time is essential in speeding up your processes and getting on with the next task at hand.

As a guide, JobAdder benchmarks across several other industries including:

  • Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) SaaS
  • B2B support teams 
  • SaaS (in general)

Through this, the recruitment industry standard for first reply time is currently sitting at 14.8 hours. JobAdders first response time is 20 minutes. 

Furthermore, the industry has a 55% one-touch resolution, which is a metric used to measure the percentage of customer inquiries that are resolved by a support representative in a single conversation or interaction. JobAdder support is 65%. As for full resolution time, the industry stands at 48 hours. Our support team = 4.5 hours. 

4. The all-rounder support team

When SaaS support team members are assigned tasks that align with their preferences such as phone, email or live chat it does prompt a positive effect, as they work to their strengths. As for JobAdder support, every single pirate (as we love to call them) is “trained in 360-degree support, meaning that everybody can help out clients on any product,” said Jez. 

“However, as we get to know our support pirates, we work out which pathway they are more excited about. This could mean working alongside our product and development team to work out what makes our product tick, or working alongside our new clients that have gone live to ensure there is as little friction as possible when transitioning to a new system,” she explained.

“Also every single member of support… supports! Even myself, as the Head of Support. This is vital to stay in touch with clients requests and to ensure we are updated on trending topics. How else can we mitigate issues and resolve problems for our clients, if we’re not working with our clients? No crusty old support badgers here!” she added. 

5. Personality is key

When was the last time you spoke to a support team member, either via phone, email or live chat and ended the conversation with a smile? 

For Jez, support is often a pathway for the overall JobAdder business. “A lot of the friendly Adders you see today rose through the support ranks. Whether you’re a support pirate for life or transition into our awesome company, it just shows a constant commitment to our clients and our product,” she explained. 

She added, “who better to continue the JobAdder journey then staff that have worked closely on solving and helping clients. I can’t help it; I’m biased with support.”  

With JobAdder, “we hire positive, empathic, authentic and quirky pirates. As dorky as it sounds, it’s not just about hitting KPIs, it’s about having a laugh and connecting with clients,” said Jez. 

“We spend the bulk of our waking day at work, so let’s make it fun!”

What’s next?  

Once you’ve established what you value and require from a SaaS support team, the process of elimination becomes more attainable and less complex. 

A team that is empathetic, resourceful and knowledgeable who will ensure they can solve your problems. An accessible platform that allows you and your team to speak to a member from anywhere and at any time. A SaaS support team who are accurate and quick to respond, as well as have impressive resolution times. 

Real-time customer feedback that provides you with the ability to submit your own. Also, don’t forget to check that if you correspond with one support team member via email, that you can still reach that same person via live chat. The team should be all-rounders who can handle every channel. 

Steve Jobs once claimed: “Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.” Make sure the support team that comes with your purchased product helps move your business forward. 

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