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Customer Support in a Brave New World

Byrce Ambraziunas March 19, 2014

DevOps Integrations


There’s a lot of talk about DevOps and how it’s changing the way that businesses, especially those of a SAAS-variety, do work. However, we believe that focusing on the coordination and automation of just the Development and Operations teams is a great start, but a little short-sighted. The real issue is how are you supporting your customers, starting with your product and ending with your customer experience.

Our premise is that, in today’s environment, a successful company needs to apply DevOps  principles to the entire product chain, not just those two groups. A company can have a great DevOps culture and crank out and release a ton of code but unless they have a solid feedback loop from the customer back to product, how can they be sure they are releasing the correct features?

One of the main tenets of DevOps is reducing the silos that exist in the organization. The traditional means of customer support ticketing and escalation process can take days to do, since the problem has to travel from the customer to the support team to the right technical team and then back again in order to communicate the solution. But think about the time and energy saved if you could get customer support tickets in a place visible to everyone at once. Imagine if the entire team could see the support problems happening in real-time. Devs could jump in to help solve problems faster and product managers could incorporate customer feedback faster, making the support team more effective and customers even happier.

The way we’re addressing this issue of customer support is by building our own Salesforce integration. Our integration allows for customer support alerts to come into the main VictorOps timeline, enabling IT, Dev & Ops teams to see the problems as they’re happening. If an issue comes in that might relate to their domain expertise or a bit of code recently pushed, they can reach out to the Support team to proactively lend a hand. With this integration, we’ve removed the old world hurdle of getting customer feedback to the dev teams in the shortest amount of time possible.

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A key benefit of our product is to make companies holistically more nimble and better-equipped to see the overall health of their infrastructure. Of course, we’re also solving for a larger problem of situational platform awareness instead of just alerting you when something breaks. Our product vision is to enable companies to adopt DevOps philosophies throughout the entire business instead of limiting that speed to a few departments. In the end, it should always come back to the customer - whether you’re providing them with an actual product or technical support - because they are the reason you’re here.

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