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Ed Zaval (1 Posts)

Ed Zaval

Ed is a global leader with proven abilities in KPI-based services and support operations, CSAT/NPS, and maintenance revenue retention management in the enterprise and service provider markets. He is a long-standing ally of sales; providing high attachment use-case services solutions that enable product/license sales expansion while providing senior-level customer engagement to ensure customer "referenceability."

SumTotal Wins TSIA’s STAR Award for Transformation of Support Services

SumTotal Wins TSIA’s STAR Award for Transformation of Support Services

“Customers don’t expect you to be perfect. They do expect you to fix things when they go wrong.” – Donald Porter

I joined SumTotal over a year ago at a time when we were at the tail-end of a challenging 16-month software platform migration project that was increasing customer’s case resolution times. To address this situation, we established a number of customer support initiatives to ensure SumTotal’s customers get the support they require when they require it and enjoy the intended business outcomes of our solutions.

Fast forward to today and SumTotal is the proud recipient of the Transformation of Support Services category in the Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) STAR Awards. TSIA provides service and support and customer success industry benchmarking and research practices, so this is the ultimate recognition from our industry peers and one of SumTotal Support’s most significant achievements this past year.

So how did SumTotal win?

Companies seeking the STAR Award undergo a rigorous evaluation process, with the winners selected by TSIA’s service practice advisory board members. When considering the SumTotal application, these are just some of the areas that the TSIA reviewed.

  • Escalation processes and resolution times
  • Premier support entitlements
  • Customer communications
  • Customer self-service tools

Thanks to SumTotal’s TSIA membership, which provided access to industry pacesetter benchmarks for response and resolution times, we began improving our resolution times with a clear understanding of what great looks like, and therefore what we needed to achieve. From there we retooled our support infrastructure and built systems with a focus on creating accountability and empowering individual technical support engineers (TSEs).

This foundation paved the way for us to go ahead and streamline the process for customers to access support. We created a self-service Knowledge Management portal and the mySupport mobile app, the first customer support app designed for the corporate learning industry. Both self-service platforms enable customers to resolve or triage a wide variety of issues on-demand directly. The mySupport mobile app also provides customers with a transparent view into metrics such as site status and availability, case activity and more, delivering a single, end-to-end destination for all support and service needs. We were thrilled that the Craig Weiss Group recently described mySupport as “by far the best mobile app for Support.”

The results

“What’s measured is improved” – Peter Drucker

Here’s what our changes and improvements led to:

  • 92% achievement of initial response time as per the Service Level Agreements
  • 31% faster resolution times (year-over-year)
  • 107% increase in net promoter score (NPS) (year-over-year)


Next steps

As we enjoy the recognition of our hard work, we know the journey isn’t over. Ensuring our customers achieve their business goals means we need to iterate and keep innovating. Thanks to data and insights gleaned from NPS surveys plus direct customer feedback, we already have our next initiatives:

  • Adoption of intelligent and predictive knowledge management technologies
  • Enhanced self-service product embedded support
  • Schedule a chat with an expert

However, back to today.

Today we celebrate and thank all our customers for their continuous improvement feedback and assistance on every technical support case.