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Whitaker-Taylor Insights

Setting Up a Global Support Program – 3 Recent (and Perennial) Lessons Learned

Mar 22, 2016 1:00:00 PM / by Scott Burton

WT__setting_up_a_global_program_-_lessons.jpgEvery time we set up a new global support program we learn something new.  In fact it seems each year the dynamics change.  There are new technologies in place, whether it be Jam in SuccessFactors or new cyber security policies regarding the use of external file sharing sites.  Not to mention the continued shift to virtual team members, which brings expanded coverage across regions and countries.

So, when we recently began a new global support program for a customer an international mining and aggregates company with over 90,000 employees worldwide here are some knowledge bits we gathered:

  • Single point of contact – Know when and when not to have a single point of contact on both sides of the partnership. This can be an issue for tickets opened with SuccessFactors.  You don't want timeline delays since a single person is inevitably in a single time zone and will have off hours that can't afford to be lost.  
  • Common language – When there is a common language understood by all team members, it’s best to use it in all email communications.  Sometimes a different team member may have to pick up an issue and read through the history. Pretty hard to do if you don’t understand the language in the email chain. In turn, variable time will be lost if the new member stumbles through the language in the email chain.
  • Approval process - If approval to work on tickets is centralized in a given country, make sure there is a process in place for off-hours approvals to avoid critical delays in beginning work. 

The important and perennial lesson we learn, from year to year and partnership to partnership, is that there are always new factors to consider and new ways to improve.  So, make sure that your Operational Guidelines documents are indeed dynamic documents, updated as often as key factors change and as lessons are learned.



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Topics: Global Support Program

Scott Burton
Written by: Scott Burton

As the President of Whitaker-Taylor, Scott Burton has managed operations for more than 30 global, national and regional SAP users, spanning the manufacturing, automotive, retail, information systems and energy industries. His range of expertise includes systems implementation, change management, support analysis, project management, and account management.