Remote support systems, which are tools that enhance customer support through remote control, can deliver a positive ROI to the enterprise in several ways. The remote support software allows a tech rep to take control of a remote computer, and conduct repairs from a remote location, install and configure software, or instruct a client in application usage.
The return is delivered through several means. First, remote support systems reduce the average time to completion of any given call. By eliminating the need to talk a client through complex procedures, the support call is faster and more efficient, allowing the rep to handle more clients than would otherwise be possible. Second, return is achieved by eliminating the need for some in-person travel to customer sites for routine maintenance. “Soft” ROI may not be easily measured, but it exists nonetheless, and includes improved customer satisfaction, which leads to greater repeat sales down the road.
A large percentage of support costs is in resolving customer problems, which often require more than one contact. In a traditional support call, a great deal of time can be spent in understanding the problem, getting the error message and other details, and in talking the customer through the resolution. Remote control software allows the call time to be cut by half or more. Work done on the back end in the lab can also be streamlined, since the remote control software allows more data and information to be captured directly.
While a vendor may offer examples of ROI achieved by other customers, it is advisable to calculate your own ROI on remote support after it has been deployed. A metric that almost every call center records as a routine matter is the average call time. Use the average call time before implementation as a baseline, then measure average call time after the implementation. Allow for a long enough learning curve (about a month) for the tech reps to become comfortable with the technology; from there, it will be easy to calculate time savings and to translate that into full-time-equivalents saved. Also, the travel budget can be compared in the same way; cutting down on travel to client sites saves both time and money.
A longer-term metric is the sales figure. Assuming that improved support will lead to happier customers, and therefore to better references as well as more repeat sales, the sales metric can also be taken into account when calculating the ROI of remote support software. There are likely other factors involved in increased sales, so a sense of remote support’s impact on future sales can be achieved through a customer satisfaction survey that asks relevant questions, such as whether the customer is satisfied with customer support, and how likely they are to purchase additional products.