Delivering service excellence with SMAX

Interview with Tim Wilkinson – Group Operations Director at Redcentric

We’ve been championing continuous improvement internally within Redcentric for many years now, so I’m really delighted to be talking to our customers about the launch of our new service delivery platform – SMAX – because it represents a significant milestone in our programme of initiatives. It will allow us to deliver some immediate benefits to our customers but it’s also a platform for the future which will allow us to enhance the customer experience going forward.

 

Why SMAX?

SMAX evolves and improves our service delivery capability by using automation, AI, and machine-learning. It will help us to be more efficient and to work smarter.

SMAX is positioned in Gartner’s top, right hand quadrant for service management technologies and it’s quoted in The Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Service Management, Q4 2019 report evaluating enterprise service management (ESM) providers:

SMAX integrates further intelligence into the service delivery lifecycle. Micro Focus provides one of the most intelligent service management platforms currently available, including uniquely advanced automated change risk scoring and proactive change optimization suggestions. It also supports proactive knowledge creation suggestions, incident correlation, suggested incident resolution, and a virtual agent.

 

What will it mean for customers?

We’ve chosen to make a significant investment in SMAX from both a resource and a financial perspective, our development team have been working on the project for the last 12 months and we firmly believe SMAX will help to differentiate Redcentric in the marketplace. SMAX focuses on providing a great user experience and at the same time allows us to use automation, AI and machine-learning to streamline our activities. Our customers will be presented with a fresh new modern interface, a much smoother service desk experience and the opportunity to self-serve from a comprehensive knowledgebase to help reduce resolution times.

 

How will SMAX improve communication?

Because SMAX allows us to centralise information in one place, it will also help improve communication by providing customers greater visibility of things like ticket progress, both individually and across the entire customer organisation thereby reducing requests to the service desk for updates. SMAX comes with a suite of over a hundred “out of the box” reports and analytics which will help our customers to spot trends and work with us to solve problems and reduce repetitive incidents in the future.

There’s lots of other exciting features too, like a virtual agent, which will make it easy for customers to find information by typing in a request and interacting with the virtual agent.

 

How will it affect how customers contact Redcentric and how customers get issues resolved?

For enterprise customers where our service desk team is typically liaising with the customers’ own service desk on a daily basis, this is going to simplify communication and allow us to gather all the data we need quickly and efficiently right from the outset to help us to diagnose and resolve problems more effectively. We’re confident that with the new self-service capability even those customers who are infrequent users of our current customer portal, will find it intuitive and easy to use

We want to encourage all customers to use SMAX because it will help both us and our customers to realise the benefits that SMAX can deliver. That’s not to say that customers can’t email in, or call us, but ultimately, if customers are able to quickly find the resolution themselves rather than log a ticket and take their place in a queue it must be a win-win all round.

 

How will it help teams within Redcentric?

Behind the scenes, we’ll be using the ITIL based best practice service management expertise of SMAX to create efficiencies and the workflows and features built into SMAX will helps us to replace repetitive tasks with automation, to streamline our processes, and be more consistent in how we deliver services. Importantly, automation increases our capacity to handle the more complex requests from customers, releasing resource and helping us spot trends so that we can implement changes which improve outcomes for customers and mitigate risk.

 

In practice, what will it improve for our customers?

At the end of the day, we know that our customers want to be able to resolve problems and request service changes quickly and efficiently and that they can raise tickets in the knowledge that they will be correctly prioritised according to impact. They also want to understand how tickets are progressing, to avoid duplication of effort and to be kept up to date at all times. Communication is at the heart of all of this.

SMAX is going to help with all of this, standardising processes, using machine learning to surface more relevant information for customers to self-serve, improving visibility of tickets and providing analytics to help customers and Redcentric see trends in tickets and take a more pro-active approach.

 

What’s coming next?

One of the key features we’re really excited about is the self-service capability. Nowadays, when you buy any service, customers expect to be able to search for help and have the capability to solve issues themselves. The knowledgebase within SMAX will provide this from the outset, but importantly it will continue to grow and populate the database with relevant information due to the embedded machine learning technology.

We’ll continue to evolve how we use SMAX, for example in phase 2 of our release in the first quarter of 2022, customers will be able to use the SMAX mobile app which removes any barriers to communication when working away from the office. This will be a real benefit to those customers who have adopted hybrid working and allows customers to monitor their tickets, changes, service, and support requests anytime, anyplace, anywhere.


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