So, you’ve done the hard work and built a comprehensive Service Request catalogue for your service delivery department, complete with a self-service portal to allow your users to log requests quickly and easily.
You’ve built it, but for some reason your users are not playing by uplifting Hollywood film rules and don’t come.
Seeing your shiny new self-service portal abandoned in favour of other, more labour-intensive, channels such as e-mails and phone calls can be disheartening.
A lack of self-service adoption can be attributed to many factors, for example:
Often, however, low traffic to your self-service channel is simply down to a failure of communication. Your users cannot use it if they are not aware of its existence!
Here’s how to spread the word and help your customers help themselves:
Think like a marketer and promote your catalogue through:
If you can, get your marketing and design teams on board to help create attention-grabbing collateral.
Even if your furthest customer is the team down the hall, you can still take the show to them.
Book some time with various departments within your organisation to show off how your service request portal works and how it can benefit them.
This approach can be particularly useful if you are partitioning your portal to accommodate different departments such as HR, Facilities, etc. You can show them services specific to their day-to-day activities, making it more likely that they will buy in to the system.
There will always be some early adopters who take to the new system with aplomb. Identify these enthusiasts and recruit them as ambassadors to help spread the word and show their colleagues how easy and stress-free it is to log service requests through the portal.
Conversely, you can also identify repeat offenders and approach them (gently) to understand the source of their resistance.
Who doesn’t love free stuff? As part of your marketing and communications campaign, you can offer users who use the portal a chance to win a prize. Amazon vouchers work well or, depending on your budget, the latest tech gadget.
This isn’t quite as Draconian as it sounds. It’s not about forcing users, but rather gently nudging them towards the right channel. For example, if someone phones up the service desk for something they could have easily requested via your portal, say: “Of course I can help you with this, but it is so much easier to do it via the portal next time. Let me show you how…”
In order to drive the right behaviour, consider making it worth their while by committing to higher Service Level Agreements for items logged via the self-service portal.
What isn’t reinforced tends to be forgotten. Regularly advertise your service request portal through your various marketing channels so it remains top of mind.