A few months ago, I visited my General Practitioner and told her, “I’m having a lot of shoulder pain.” She didn’t immediately send me into surgery. Rather, she asked questions about the pain. She wanted to know about the exact nature and intensity of the pain before taking appropriate actions.

“What is going on?” the first Key to Success at HCL Software Support, is about gaining clarity and understanding around you contacting HCL Software Support.

At HCL Software Support, we often see variations of the shoulder pain; ‘the performance of the application is slow,’ ‘the install fails,’ or ‘something is not working.’ Like a medical doctor, HCL Engineers will seek clarity, an assessment of the exact scope of the concern(s) raised. This is in collaboration with you, the client, to come to a mutual understanding of what help is needed and by when.

A powerful question you may hear from us is, “What do you mean by…?”. A report of an application ‘crashing’ can be interpreted in many ways. For example, a Blue Screen of Death, a specific error message, locking up, or simply shutting down are all very different forms of ‘crashing.’ The troubleshooting approach to each is very different. “What do you mean by crashing?” or “What exactly happens when it crashes?” are questions we ask to ensure we understand exactly how it is crashing. Screen share applications are powerful tools that allow us to see directly “what is going on.” Once your concerns are understood and agreed upon, together we can set priority.

My GP understood the pain was dull, not sharp. I could move my arm, and, though with difficulty, I could lift my arm over my head. Phew, no need for the knife! I was sent home with some ibuprofen, and she gave me some stretches to try the next day. She also sent a referral to a physiotherapist for further analysis in the following week.

Priority Setting helps us make sure that we utilise our resources, as well as yours, on the most important aspects of your concerns first. To do this, we look at priority in three closely related dimensions. What happens currently? What is the expected trend? And is there a timeline we need to take into consideration? Understanding these priorities helps us set appropriate action plans, steps that reflect both your expectations and ours. A question about a future application upgrade may not have any current impact but could very well in the future.

Not all cases require troubleshooting. Questions such as ‘How do I reset a locked record?’ likely have a straightforward answer, but we still seek to understand your unique situation and environment, so we can provide the best answer for you. Just like your GP’s awareness of your unique medical history and context is key to providing the best medicine for you.

Whether the next step is to provide an answer, to debug an error, or gather detailed program logs, the related action needs an owner and an agreed upon timeframe. This ensures we have a mutual understanding of who is doing what by when.

We all face time pressures and conflicting priorities. That pressure to act can lead us to take unnecessary actions or steps that may worsen the situation. This is the opposite of the old saying, “don’t just stand there, do something!” – it’s about taking a moment to just stand there, to think it through first. It is a collaboration between our teams and yours. There are situations where we do need to ‘just do something’, but often, obtaining a proper understanding through an initial dialog with you helps enormously in prioritising and directing our follow-up steps.

Responsiveness is, of course, the speed of ‘getting back to you.’ But not just how quickly we respond, but, most importantly, how accurately we respond. It’s also about thinking clearly before taking any action.

And my shoulder is feeling much better now.

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Further Reading
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Cloud Native | October 13, 2021
Darren Oberst | Transforming a Lifelong Passion into an International Leadership Career
Darren Oberst, Senior Corporate Vice President and Global Head of HCL Software, joins Innodata’s Podcast, Absolute AI, as a guest on the topic, Conversations With the Humans Behind Artificial Intelligence. Darren discusses how he transformed his lifelong passion into a career in international leadership.
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HCL Software | October 13, 2021
What is a Cyberattack? Everything You Need to Know
There is no doubt that cybercrime is rising. In 2020, data breaches exposed over 36 billion records. The average number of attacks increased by 33% (Over the previous year).
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HCL Software | September 20, 2021
HCL Software Support Achieves ISO 27001 Certification
I’m excited to announce that the Product Support team of HCL Software has been awarded the ISO 27001 certification. As Director of the Product Support team, I can’t be more proud of my entire team for having moved one additional step on the ladder of our Support Maturity Model.
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