Strategies to improve the efficiency of DSPs’ technical assistance center (TAC)

  • Posted by prodapt
  • May 28, 2018 12:12 PM BST
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The communication industry is growing at an unprecedented pace and is emerging as a multi-service industry, with many next-gen offerings. Digital Service Providers (DSPs) are adding diverse services in their catalogs such as mobile voice, data, IPTV, DTH, broadband, and VAS.

The communication industry is growing at an unprecedented pace and is emerging as a multi-service industry, with many next-gen offerings. Digital Service Providers (DSPs) are adding diverse services in their catalogs such as mobile voice, data, IPTV, DTH, broadband, and VAS. In order to support these services and maintain quick and quality customer care, DSPs have developed technical assistance centers (TACs) with specialists who can help customers to solve the issues related to any service being offered to them. However, there are a lot of challenges faced to maintain and improve the efficiency and productivity of these technical assistance centers (TAC). The fact is, majority of the employee hours are invested in non-value added (NVA) tasks. This causes significant reduction in the overall productivity and employee satisfaction.

These NVA tasks can be classified into the following categories.

-          Overprocessing

-          Rework

-          High waiting time

-          Wastage of resource intellect and skillset

Further analysis shows that high-volume of inbound repeat calls, a huge number of low priority tickets, and handling of distributed tools are some of the major areas resulting in NVA tasks.

Analyzing the major areas causing NVAs:

1. High-volume of inbound repeat calls

To solve the problem of the high volume of repeat calls, it is recommended to perform detailed analysis of inbound calls database with the help of repeat call analyzer tool. The analysis should include the following fields:

-          Source of calls (e.g. Field technicians/customers/Level-1/Level 2 support)

-          Issue category (e.g. Provisioning/Troubleshooting)

-          Geography

-          Device type/model

The report generated by tickets analyzer tool shows that a typical TAC receives approximately 30% of the inbound calls as repeat calls and 75-85% of repeat calls come from field engineers for train rate issues, IP issues, provisioning validation etc.

2. A huge number of low priority tickets

Similar to the repeat calls analysis, tickets can also be analyzed using a tickets analyzer tool for the following fields:

-          Type of the ticket (severity level)

-          The frequency of the ticket for same customer or device

-          Functionality affected

The report generated by the tickets analyzer tool shows that in general, approximately 70% of the tickets are of low-priority. These tickets are related to speed or broadband issues from the existing customers and login/password related issues.

3. Handling distributed tools

Over the years, DSPs have built/added several tools and applications, based on the TAC teams’ requirements. Today, a typical TAC team has approximately 25 to 40 different tools for record processing. It is difficult for TAC analysts to perform activities efficiently on distributed tools. It leaves high scope for errors and mismatches in record processing.

Strategies to eliminate NVAs

Following are some of the key recommendations that may help reducing non-value added (NVA) tasks and improving customer experience.

-          Implement bot assistance for level - 1/2 support team: Deploy software robots to perform screening and basic troubleshooting steps to assist the level - 1/2 support centers. This will reduce the inbound calls and tickets from level - 1/2 support to TAC.

-          Implement proactive monitoring and alert mechanism: Enhancing the monitoring tool with the capability to monitor the issues and assign/create correlated tickets proactively on ITSM. For example, if the monitoring tool detects an issue with specific DSLAM modem type, the correlated ticket is raised on ITSM with CRM integration. This helps level - 1/2 resources accessing the CRM to proactively know all the affected customers with the particular DSLAM model type and take appropriate action even before customers complain.

-          Enhanced support application for field engineers: Enhance field engineers’ support app to contain all the necessary information such as order provisioning status, maximum attainable rate up/down, DSLAM card and slot information. This would reduce the calls and tickets raised from field engineers to TAC.

-          On-demand provisioning feature: On-demand availability of an auto-provisioning tool to field technicians. This would help field engineers to fix any provisioning issues at customer premises by themselves without support from TAC, in turn reducing calls and tickets to TAC.Self-diagnostic tools and on-demand access to the provisioning tool can help in reducing inbound calls volume by 33%.

-          Updated workflow for level - 1/2 resources: Clear workflow to enable level - 1/2 resources in handling issues such as resetting username, password etc., without TAC assistance. The workflow can be used as a checklist before issues are escalated by level - 1/2 resources to TAC.

-          Providing clear password policy description on self-care portal: Providing clear password policy description on self-care portal reduces login/password related tickets.

-          Proactive network analyzer tools for field technicians: Provide proactive network analyser tools such as Copper Analyzer, Broadband Tester etc., to field engineers to fix the issues proactively and reduce ticket volume. Copper Analyzer and Robotic Screener help identify and solve entry-level issues, which further helps in reducing ticket volume by 40%.

-          Consolidation Strategy for tools: Conduct a tool study, based on tools’ features, compatibility & dependencies. The study should also focus on required APIs, scripts for consolidation and integration. The study helps categorizing tools into two sets:

  1. Tools that can be consolidated
  2. Tools that can be integrated

 

After tools consolidation, TAC analyst doesn’t need to login to various tools to complete one task. All the operations can be done on a single window.Tools consolidation can help in reducing record (mismatch) issues by 68%.

Credits:

RajeshKhanna J, Assistant General Manager – Telebots RPA, Prodapt

Sasikumar B, Assistant General Manager – Telebots RPA, Prodapt

Vishwa Nigam, Manager- Strategic insights & Thought leadership, Prodapt

 

 

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