I spent time on the weekend responding to a survey from the Australian Newsagents’ Federation about what is included in our software support package for newsagents. I was happy to complete the survey as it shows the ANF is serious about understanding what newsagents get for their support dollar from the various software companies. Hopefully, the results will allow easier comparison between the software companies.

Completing the survey reminded me of how complete our support package is – beyond support. There’s a free day of training for new owners, our business check and theft check services, more than 70 user meetings in the last year and more than 20 business management / development training opportunities. To name but some of what is included in the support package.

But it was when I took a support calls at the office very early this morning that it all made sense – no matter how complete the package or how good it all reads, we really are only as good as our last support call. A dud call, for whatever reason, leads to talk and this fans out as stories of bad service.

Good support is about getting to the call on time and with the right advice. In the small business sector, where we play, it means having more people that you really need – so that you can cover the peaks you can never predict.

This is how we run our Help Desk – with more resources than the bean counters would like. It is why we can get to calls sooner and why we have a robust escalation process to drive good outcomes.

After the call this morning and reviewing the ANF survey response from the weekend, I’m glad we understand that we are only as good as our last support call and resource accordingly.