2018 Heads of Support Data
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In which region is your company based?OtherHow many people does your company employ?How many customers does your company support directly?How much annual revenue does your company bring in? (Please estimate in USD)We sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueWe are non-profit/government organizationHow complex is your product or products?Approximately how much money is in the yearly total support budget?Approximately how much money is in the yearly support budget for professional development?Do you outsource any of your customer support?How many full time agents are on your support team?How many part time and/or seasonal agents are on your support team?How many managers and/or leads are on your support team?How much turnover does your team experience each year?Where are your support employees located?OtherPhoneMessagingChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaOtherWhat indicators do you use to forecast your support team’s budget?What is the most challenging thing about requesting the resources you need?What’s the most exciting and most worrying thing on the horizon for your support department?
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North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$30,000$2,000We outsource NONE of our support functions40121 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailVolume of work means overtimebusiness is constantly changingchat
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North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)600,00020,000We outsource SOME of our support functions932Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneMessagingEmailPast expenses and projected company order/revenue growthA lot can change between the time that I'm putting a budget request in for the following year and 8 months down the line when we're living with the budget that we requested.We're a food company so every year Thanksgiving is a big deal that takes a lot of planning, it can be a real make it or break it moment for our team and the company. More long-term we're going to expand to new locations and branch our team to provide more proactive support.
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North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)100,0000We outsource NONE of our support functions101We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedEmailNothing yetNot having the analytics in place to forecast adequately.Hiring with wave of growth coming
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North America1 to 49100,000 or more customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$150,000$1,000We outsource NONE of our support functions100Less than 10%We are mostly remoteEmailCommunitySocial mediaNone currentlyNone currentlyThinking about how we can use new tools to reach more customers, more quickly
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North America1 to 49Less than 499 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$500,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions431Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailTicket Volume, Ticket/Agent ratioSupport work load varies wildly, it's difficult to make requests with such uncertaintyWe might be developing an additional solution internally from scratch. That is very exciting but also opens up a whole bunch of challenges
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North America50 to 499500 to 999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1,635,000$20,000We outsource SOME of our support functions94211 to 20%We are mostly remotePhoneEmailCommunityNumber of customers, number of users, tier of schools, past ticket volume, past volume increases/decreases, contractors neededSupport is still seen as mostly a cost center and we're prioritizing revenue generationExciting - finding better tools and processes to help customers and ourselves. Worry - team burnout, onboarding, team ownership/accountability
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$1,200,0020,000We outsource NONE of our support functions1902Less than 10%We are mostly remoteEmailSocial mediaSpeed of response time-- if that slows we need more resources. Growth of our customer base as well.Balance of bomb ass support and efficiently using our current resources. We haven't been told no before, so asking isn't a problem. Knowing when to ask is. Growing too large that we lose quality and culture.
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Europe1,000 to 4,99910,000 to 49,999$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)8,000,00010,000We outsource NONE of our support functions200202321 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailCommunityDictated by the finance team, based on forecast revenue Any additional FTE requires a business case, results are not based on need in the team but EBITDAFocus on prevention, i.e. Other departments taking an interest.
Budget
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North America1,000 to 4,999100,000 or more customers$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$800,000$25,000We outsource SOME of our support functions2502Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailSocial mediaSales forecastsbudget issuesnone
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$8,000.00$1,000 per personWe outsource NONE of our support functions24111 to 20%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailSocial mediaI don't really feel like I know what I'm doing! A lot of it is trial & error — v thankful to have found SD as a community.
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North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)CEO refuses to use budgets0We outsource NONE of our support functions1402Less than 10%We are mostly remotePhoneChatEmailSocial mediaNACEO does not listenscaling, retention
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Asia50 to 499Less than 499 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$90,000$0We outsource NONE of our support functions801We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedChatEmailIn appNumber of people we will hire in next 1 year.
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Europe50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1,000,00020,000We outsource NONE of our support functions3004Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneChatEmailSocial mediaNoneMaking it cost effectiveBrain drain
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$4,000,000?We outsource NONE of our support functions4017Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailSocial mediaForecasted company upgrades, marketing spendCFO doesn't trust Support Leadership decisionsExciting: Doubling down on Effortless Experience
Worrying: Team getting too big, culture changing, entitled employees
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North America1 to 49500 to 999$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)5000002000We outsource ALL of our support functions401We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly remotePhoneChatEmailSocial mediaContact rate (sales/unique customer contacts), SLA, Wait time, cost per caseGetting exec team buy-inSales forecasts
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North America1 to 49Less than 499 customers$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)200005000We outsource NONE of our support functions111Less than 10%We are mostly remoteMessagingEmailCommunitySocial mediaPrevious years' budgets and present education/conference requests.Discussing with the exec team why the funds make sense.It's small, and support demand is low, so it's difficult to hire as employees grow out of roles.
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North America1 to 49Less than 499 customers$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)5000We outsource NONE of our support functions030Less than 10%We are mostly remotePhoneEmailWe don't forecastWe don't requestOur sales is successful, so we can't handle the support burden
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Europe50 to 499Less than 499 customersUnder $100,000 USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We are non-profit/government organizationModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)No limit459.66We outsource NONE of our support functions301We don't measure turnoverWe have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneChatEmailNumber of sales forecasted against number of forecasted ticketsBeing undervalued as a support teamIncrease in using bots/automatons to handle support
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$420,000$0We outsource NONE of our support functions1213Less than 10%We are mostly remoteEmailSocial mediaIncrease in ticket volume, predicted continued growth in subscribing customersEngineering support to test/ implement new technology for support, like AI/ chat/ etc. It's hard to convince them to put in time for something that may not work, but it's important for us to try things out and see.Most exciting and worrying: desk.com shutting down, so we have to move somewhere else! I'm excited about the other options, but worried about the transition.
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North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)Under $150,000 which includes salary$1,000We outsource SOME of our support functions311Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailTicket volume by month and VC funding budget.The available money for the resources.Growth of our product which will allow us to grow the team is exciting. Getting Series A funding.
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Europe50 to 499100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$875,000$15,000We outsource SOME of our support functions1603Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailSocial mediaActive customers and RevenueWe're a high growth company so we need to over resource whcih can be a challenging conversation24/7 support, and continued global efforts
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North America500 to 9991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe are non-profit/government organizationComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)900,0003,500We outsource SOME of our support functions65111 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailAttempt to understand expectations of Sales & Product teams and budget for those as needed.I'm not high enough in the hierarchy to deal with headcount. My boss handles that and when I'm hiring I have to get him to confirm what salary was made available for the role.Growth! 100% growth in support cases for one product vs last year. We're not in a good place to handle that and keep up with our other responsibilities.
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North America1,000 to 4,999100,000 or more customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$4,500,000$1,500,000We outsource NONE of our support functions70121311 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaSales projections for all products across all markets and what that will do to our support volume. That impacts the need for additional full-time and part-time headcount along with the amount of usage that we pay for in our tools.Having the correct and accurate data to back up our assumptions, needs and requests for leadership.They are one in the same, but we're continually selling different products that are geared towards specific markets into all markets both up and downstream. This adds complexity to how we structure, train and develop our support teams across the globe. We don't "specialize" our support team, but with everything we have in the works in development, we'll likely start moving towards our own variation of specialization.
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North America1 to 49100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$20,000$5,000We outsource SOME of our support functions421Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailVolume, new products/ platformsTrying to communicate team needs and roadblocksExciting: growth as a company; Worrying: communications between other teams > support & lower quality of work
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Europe1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1300000200000We outsource NONE of our support functions7114Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailSocial media* Customer-growth, projections on support-load based on calculationsi often hear «but YZ could do more, then we don't need more people» and not considering the long term-effect of support (feeling like beeing trapped in a rat race).Exciting: We plan to expand support-times. Worrying: We've got a big team but no experienced managers.
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Europe1,000 to 4,999100,000 or more customersOver $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)1,200,00010,000We outsource NONE of our support functions501Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaWalk-inTickets per month, unresolved per month, review expenditures every monthMoney - being seen as a cost - not someone that helps business met its goalsGrowing from 4 to 6 (inc myself) / new technology and users reluctant to change
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)? does this include salaries?10,000We outsource NONE of our support functions221Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailCommunity
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Europe1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)750000We outsource NONE of our support functions221Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedEmailLooking at the number of wins sales are forecasting and then using that to plan out how many more bodies we’ll need.Since it’s a cost to the business, it’s a more difficult argument. Sales have a much easier ride as they can show how their investment turns into $. Our CEO is realising he can’t be so Sales-focused anymore, and next year I should be looking to at least treble my budget to grow our support and get customer success off the ground properly.
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$800,000$40,000We outsource NONE of our support functions1503Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailCommunitySocial mediaWe look at week-over-week and year-over-year contact growth deltas, and match that with average agent capacity, with a +/- factor of 5%.Convincing executive leadership that excellent customer service requires investment in people, and that the ROI can't be measured in the same terms as it is with the marketing team.Growth outpacing budget - more contacts mean more customers, which is good, but our budget to expand is locked in at the start of each fiscal year, so we can find ourselves underwater in a hurry.
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North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)220000500We outsource NONE of our support functions111Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailWe panic-hire after it's too late.Start up life = no budget until we need to put out a fireWe're growing rapidly, but fighting some bad fires we set for ourselves a while ago.
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Australia/Oceania1 to 4950,000 to 99,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)10000015000We outsource NONE of our support functions100Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedEmailCommunitySupport PortalContact Rate, New skills neededSelecting the resourcesMost exciting: More customers and more customer usage data. Most Worrying: Launching a new product and not knowing where the support baseline will sit.
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$100,000$12,000We outsource NONE of our support functions401Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial mediaIncoming cases, seasonality, growth rate, available fundsExpense of support compared to improved engineering. At the current state of things, we need to build/fix more than we need to help explain what needs building/fixing.Most exciting is making more money. Most worrying is the management of staff needed to manage as we scale.
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$4,000,00050000We outsource SOME of our support functions5006Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailSocial mediacustomers
tickets
benchmark % of budget for SupportAI
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)500,000500,000We outsource NONE of our support functions40121 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedEmailSocial mediaticket forecasting, product releasesnot challengingscaling
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North America1 to 4950,000 to 99,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)300,000about 3k per employeeWe outsource NONE of our support functions301Less than 10%We are mostly remoteChatEmailrevenue targets/ user base increasen/araising series a, nervous about the growth and lacking support resources
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Australia/Oceania1 to 491,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)3000015000We outsource NONE of our support functions40211 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial mediaTicket #'s / agent activity
NPS
CSAT
CES
Sales forecast
Gaining C-level/board buy in.
CS currently under Marketing umbrella/management.
Organisation is open to staff working remotely
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North America50 to 499500 to 999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)nanaWe outsource NONE of our support functions501Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailnaFinding the right person to request fromOur enormous backlog and how it affects the good will of our customer base.
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)450000450000We outsource NONE of our support functions602We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly remoteChatEmailSocial mediaThe support team doesn't determine this, C-level leadership does. Right now we're in a hiring freeze. Competing with other teams for limited resourcesMost exciting: the support we're able to provide with the resources we're given. Most worrying: We are struggling to be profitable right now, if someone left the team they wouldn't be replaced, which would be bad news for an already understaffed team.
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North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)2000001000We outsource NONE of our support functions201Less than 10%We are mostly remoteMessagingEmailCommunitySocial mediaI do not forecast our budget.Our company's revenue can be inconsistent and therefore there is a lot of reluctance to add more resource.The most exciting and worrying thing is the same for us! We're a gaming company that is browser-based and going to mobile soon, and we need to deal with all the challenges that we'll entail there.
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$1,100,000$50,000We outsource SOME of our support functions20357Less than 10%We are mostly remoteMessagingChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaWe forecast our staffing need more than the budget itself, but we do so by looking at the trends in growth of signups, support access ratios, and average team efficiency.Our leadership team is extremely supportive and allows us to hire what we need—plus more so we're operating with some slack.We currently provide chat in our mobile app only. Now we're looking at offering chat on our web app, which is both exciting and worrying.
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North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$290,0000We outsource NONE of our support functions401Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailThe big number I gave you is based on payroll. We don't have a formal budget, as I usually make a case for any new tool we need as it comes up. I get my requests approved most of the time (80% of the time), as our leadership understands my team's needs.It takes time to prepare my case for a new tool. I first explore options, and find free or less expensive alternatives. Once I am prepped, I don't hesitate approaching my CEO with the request. It helps that my CEO checks in with me about whether or not we need to hire more people too. Our product is growing! This means more users and more tickets, so it's going to be exciting/worrying to scale our support.
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customersOver $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)2,000,0005,000We outsource NONE of our support functions670511 to 20%We are mostly remoteChatEmailSales directly drive our contact intensityBecause CS doesn't drive revenue, sharing engineering resources with product team often means waiting a long time or losing out on getting fixes.Migrating platforms is both exciting and worrying, because we haven't decided on which platform we will use.
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$500,000$25,000+We outsource NONE of our support functions601Less than 10%We are mostly remoteChatEmailSocial mediaOur average first reply times, if they slip over 1hr average, then that's usually indicative of something that is awry. We also track our customer base growth as that impacts the amount of work needed and how many hands needed to best serve our customers.Making the case for adding additional team members and preparing for larger levels of volume as we grow.Super excited to be growing, we have multiple HUGE product releases coming soon that could heavily impact the support volume we receive. We're excited to tackle it and have several candidates in the pipeline available to bring on board if we need the help.
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North America1 to 49Less than 499 customers$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$80,000$400We outsource NONE of our support functions121We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailWe don't (yet)_Having_ resourcesBuilding our knowledgebase out
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North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)300, 00010,000We outsource NONE of our support functions501Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingEmailSocial mediamagic 8 ball would probably work as well lol - I use last years and support volume metricsso far I'm lucky and the company fully supports support. I get what we need when we need it. If I had to name something though it would be that it's a challenge to know when is the best time to get something we needMigrating the rest of our existing customers to our 2.0 version of our app. Very different UI and some core features changes. These are the people we'll be forcing to migrate because for one reason or another they haven't done it themselves in the 3 month window we're giving them
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North America1 to 49100,000 or more customers$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)980000We outsource NONE of our support functions211Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmail
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North America50 to 49950,000 to 999,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)5000000We outsource NONE of our support functions16324Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial mediaCPOProving we need developer timeCareer Path Building
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North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)500,00016000We outsource SOME of our support functions270311 to 20%We are mostly remoteChatEmailScheduled Phone SupportPercentage to MRRBeing tied to the MRR percentage and proving ROI before resources are granted.Exciting: Hyper-growth & Worrying: Keeping the Team engaged and properly trained
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North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)4000005000We outsource NONE of our support functions401Over 50% turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedChatEmailAlmost all of our budget is used for salary, so our workload, which drives how many people we need on the team, is our main indicator.Our hiring and budget processes are not formalized or transparent, so it's hard to know where we stand with requests.The most exciting thing is how much better prepared we are for our busy season in our second year! The most worrying thing is that we will continue to experience the high turnover due to stress and lack of good fit.
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North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)i was not given a budgetno budget givenWe outsource NONE of our support functions201Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmail
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North America50 to 499Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)1000000N/A - ad-hocWe outsource NONE of our support functions1614Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedChatEmailUser #sKnowing what those resources are - very supportive execExciting: Massive growth. Worrying: If the $ is there to support the growth
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North America50 to 499Less than 500 customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to enterprise or government (B2E)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)NANAWe outsource SOME of our support functions50021 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailCommunityNAVirtually no data has been collected about contact volume, sales volumes, etc. until very recently. exciting: building a brand new support team that gives award winning service. worrying: a sudden jump in volume that we are not prepared to handle.
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North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$5,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions101We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaThis is my first year, so I'm not sure yet!I don't know what resources I need. I don't really know how much money I'm allotted.We are about to launch a new product and with me being the only person in the support department, I hope I can take on the influx of support that will be needed!
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North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$2,000,000$10,000We outsource NONE of our support functions803Less than 10%We are mostly remoteChatEmailRevenue forecastToo many levels of approvalScaling to multi product multi team environment
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North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)\--\--We outsource ALL of our support functions502We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailticket volumegetting approvalchanging crm and all of our admin tools to new products
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Australia/Oceania50 to 49950,000 to 999,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)$350,000$15,000We outsource NONE of our support functions2947Less than 10%We are mostly remoteChatEmailWe use a unit cost model. Our support cost is averaged out over each transaction.Getting dev time to build new productScaling a company faster than we can build product
58
North America50 to 499Less than 500 customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$300,000$8,000We outsource SOME of our support functions401Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneChatEmailCommunityCustom Support PortalHiring plan, assessment of Support skills and training plan, data from past yearsrequesting resources has not been a challenge. The leadership team is fully on board with Support growth.Scaling the Support team fast enough to match business growth will be challenging.
59
North America1 to 4950,000 to 999,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)Support doesn't have a budget. >: )However much is allocated based off of employee interest.We outsource NONE of our support functions300Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedChatEmailDespite not having a budget, we still use typical methods like ticket count, handling time, etc. N/AThe most exciting is while our order count is growing, our overhead costs haven't in terms of the support team. We've actually reduced contacts year over year as the order count has grown.
60
Europe1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1200003000We outsource SOME of our support functions301We don't measure turnoverWe have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneChatEmailSocial mediaNumber of customers. Long term trends in ticket volume.Not having the autonomy of a full dept :(Switching off the old version of our API and ensuring all customers are using the current version by the end of this year (eek!)
61
North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)15000005000We outsource SOME of our support functions220311 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedMessagingEmailCommunitySocial mediaTie ticket volume to MAU, DAUMaking the argument about valueFurther outsourcing and distancing the customer from the product
62
North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)1.5-2 millionWe don't have a specific budget for this, we have an open education policy so pretty much any conferences, classes, or other resources will be paid for. Most people will attend about one conference a year.We outsource NONE of our support functions1101Less than 10%We are mostly remotePhoneEmailSocial mediaWe're not asked to propose a specific budget.The company doesn't want to grow too large, which means they tend to be conservative when hiring.We're about to promote people into "specialist" roles for the first time. That means they'll be staying on the support team, but will spend the majority of their time on non-direct customer support. So working on documentation, videos, training, etc. Doing this means our team will need to grow, so we're also about to build in another layer of leadership on the team. Currently, we have one lead and 11 direct reports, but we're about to add two "captains", who will report to the current lead (me).
63
North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)250,0003600We outsource NONE of our support functions601Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial mediaticket volume
upcoming workshops
hardware/software upgrades
last years
knowing if I'm getting the right resourceenterprise level SLAs
64
North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1,600,00020000We outsource SOME of our support functions1015321 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatCommunityWebformWe project volumes based on calendarized historical trends (we are very seasonal, with a summer busy season) and Sales forecasts
Trying to predict the future will always be hard!

Also, we're at a point (~8 years in) where the company is making a push towards profitability - so keeping quality up while keeping staffing levels flat is tough - but manageable by improving the efficiencies in how we work.
I'm excited about new tools that will make us more efficient, and at the same time improve our customers' experience with support - particularly Cobrowse (the ability to see what our end users are seeing).
65
Europe1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)38 0000We outsource NONE of our support functions60111 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedMessagingEmailCommunitySocial mediaNoneLeadershipBad communication with other departments
66
Europe1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)100000020000We outsource NONE of our support functions972Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial mediaTicket predictions based on 12 week averages to understand how well resourced we are, combined with sales averages/estimatesForward thinking and ensuring we are well equipped going forward, we’ve typically been reactive to resourcing needs and ramp up for Christmas but not much aside from thatThe future role technology will play for our team and customers - ensuring efficiency without throwing money and people at the problem
67
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)$30,000$100,000We outsource SOME of our support functions211Less than 10%We are mostly remotePhoneMessagingChatEmailSocial medianone that I know of.estimating ongoing need.losing an employee and time needed to train a new one.
68
North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)1 million100,000We outsource NONE of our support functions4004Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailProjected salesOther depatements taking agents to do work other than support, but not including them in their budgets.Mergers and acquisitions.
69
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customers$100,001 to $500,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$60,000$500We outsource NONE of our support functions111Less than 10%We are mostly remotePhoneMessagingEmailSocial mediaWe look at how many clients we have, how much support was handled in the past, and the tools/incentives needed to keep the team happy and confident in their jobs. Relating value to client retention/happiness.The most exciting is that our part time employee should move to full time in the next few months, and we're hoping to start hiring again hopefully before 2020.
70
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$175,000$500We outsource NONE of our support functions401Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmail
71
North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$8,000$48,000We outsource NONE of our support functions101Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailnonenonenone at the moment
72
North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)i was not given a budgetnot given infoWe outsource NONE of our support functions311Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmail
73
North America500 to 999100,000 or more customersOver $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)400000030000We outsource ALL of our support functions7015811 to 20%We are mostly remoteChatEmailCommunitySocial mediarevenue projections
anticipated travel needs
cost per ticket
contact rate
getting buy in from higher upsexciting: possibly adding a new vendor
worrying: staying on budget
74
North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueWe are non-profit/government organizationSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)$600,000$0We outsource ALL of our support functions901Over 50% turnoverWe are mostly remoteEmailArrival patterns plus any big-ticket items due the next yearBudget is usually set in place without much wiggle roomMoving outsourced providers, not only in terms of company but also location
75
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$150,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions802Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailInvite to share my screenThe rate of growth by end-points and devices managed.Since we're still transitioning to a true MRR model, forecasting is quite challenging (AKA: Impossible). Operating in constant uncertainty makes approval for any spend difficult. Both of these things: Expanding and growing our team with better clarity on roles, yet still offering an autonomy of work and task-ownership.
76
North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$475,000$10,000We outsource NONE of our support functions701Less than 10%We are mostly remoteChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaCalculate how many support staff are needed to keep an average first response time to 1hr or less.Forecasting team growth needed to scale with customer growth.We're launching some new products which will likely bring in a large new customer base with many questions.
77
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customersUnder $100,000 USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)$500,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions301Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaTicket Forecasting (for staffing purposes); Salary Benchmarks; Assessment of new tools for support needs.Illustrating customer benefit.Exciting: New self-service options (like Answer Bot). Worrying: Government regulations.
78
North America500 to 9991,000 to 9,999$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)750000025000We outsource SOME of our support functions5307Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailCommunitySales foreasting & upsell opportunities"Isn't it good enough?" Trying to uplevel capabilities without more resources is challenging, especially when some of the resources are technology related.Growing to a more managed services level where we have more Enterprise/White Glove level service, taking care of everyone that's $1M in spend and up for example.
79
North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)this question is confusing. salary or for tools?12000We outsource SOME of our support functions321Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedEmailCommunitySocial mediawe don't. we take as necessarynoneemployee burnout/boredom
80
Europe1 to 491,000 to 9,999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)no budget110000We outsource NONE of our support functions301Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmail
81
Europe50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)??We outsource NONE of our support functions94131 to 40%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailSocial media?motivate that increased activity is not better fixed by optimising our use of toolsHelping customers post GDPR
82
Europe1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)300500We outsource NONE of our support functions641We don't measure turnoverWe have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailProfit-Center basednoneProject of going international
83
South Africa1 to 49Less than 500 customersUnder $100,000 USDWe are non-profit/government organizationModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$10 0006000We outsource NONE of our support functions111Less than 10%We are mostly remoteMessagingSocial mediaBudgetDon't know where to startThe most exciting is learning a most worrying might not get the experience i need
84
North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Complex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)10000008000We outsource NONE of our support functions302Less than 10%We are mostly remoteEmailCommunitySocial mediaResearch and headcount estimatesDetermining fair and competitive compensationNot being able to predict headcount
85
North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1,100,0007,500We outsource NONE of our support functions140211 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailHeadcount, based on projected projects and volumeEstimating more than a year in advance. (Budget is due in October and covers the entire following year.)How to scale and keep excellent support
86
Australia/Oceania1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueSimple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)300,0000We outsource NONE of our support functions411Less than 10%We are mostly remoteEmailSocial mediaCustomer growth mainly. As our customer base grows, the team grows and therefore the budget needs grow.Lack of $$. Small startup means budget is always a strain.Rapid customer growth and scaling up for it without our quality standards dropping.
87
North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)200000010000We outsource SOME of our support functions200311 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedMessagingEmailSocial mediaMonthly active users, ticket volumeMaking a compelling ROI argument
88
North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$55,000$13,000We outsource SOME of our support functions1002Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneChatEmailWe don't get to set budget, it is handled by higher levelGetting buy in on training for team.Adding freemium product which will include support. We expect a big increase in customer contacts
89
North America1 to 4910,000 to 49,999$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to consumers (B2C)We have sales based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$0$0We outsource NONE of our support functions101We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly remoteEmailCommunityAs a support team of one, it is limited employees to take on other projects.Hiring and training a remote team
90
North America1 to 49Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Simple (single page application, one product or one feature set, one platform, etc)$10,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions331Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailI break down the costs of what my team will be doing each year and estimate the costs. I try to always come in under budget. I start by taking the cost of what we did last year and estimating the costs of what we will need this year to get to a full number.The CEO is sales focused and does not see much value in professional development.The most exciting thing is planning growth, but the most worrying thing is feeling like my department will not be prioritized in growth.
91
North America50 to 499100,000 or more customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$500,000$5,000We outsource NONE of our support functions401Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedEmailCommunitySocial mediaRough calculations around new user growth in conjunction with help desk conversation volumes to determine coverage and how we need to staff.We're an early stage (Series B) startup so there's no clear budgets; it's all gut instinct and things haven't been totally formalized.

While support for our product is great, we can't just keep growing the support team linearly and that is challenging. We *need* to scale linearly *until* we roll out better self-serve and reach a saturation point where our new user growth and support volume levels off.
Scaling support internationally. Offering enterprise support. What does that look like? Hire remote or use an agency?
92
North America1,000 to 4,9991,000 to 9,999$100.1 million to $200 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1700000050000We outsource SOME of our support functions120018Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedPhoneEmailCommunitySales growth, case work growth, and others.Difficulty in predicting accurate growth in workload and how that correlates to overall growth in the business.Explosive growth, regular new feature/ product launches, and pushing to profitability (i.e. improving efficiency in light of the rest above).
93
North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)N/A - we are 100% remote and small, so no need for a specific budget.No specific allocation; but should something arise that is valuable, like a conference, we will fund it. We outsource NONE of our support functions301We don't measure turnoverWe are mostly remotePhoneChatEmailSocial mediaWith such a small team, we don't have need for this.We need very little, so the requests made are generally honored. :) Exciting: scaling so that we can expand our roles. Worrying: Creating a new support channel for an entirely separate product - our same, small team will likely have to support two totally different products!
94
North America1,000 to 4,999100,000 or more customers$50.1 million to $100 million USDWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)500 ,0000We outsource NONE of our support functions1002Less than 10%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneEmailCommunitySocial mediamoneyAdding Zendesk and Laying off staff
95
Europe50 to 499Less than 500 customers$500,001 to $1 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to consumers (B2C)We have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)2000000We outsource NONE of our support functions0251We don't measure turnoverWe have a mix of remote and co-locatedMessagingChatEmailCommunity
96
North America1 to 491,000 to 9,999$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We have subscription based revenueModerate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)$260,0004000We outsource NONE of our support functions30021 to 30%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneMessagingChatEmailCommunitySocial mediaVolume + quality of support interactions, utility of current toolsSmall, cash-conscious company with budgets closely tied to salesHow much we will or won't grow in the next 12 months
97
North America50 to 4991,000 to 9,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)Moderate (one product but multiple platforms, or multiple products but only one version and/or platform for each)1,200,00060,000We outsource NONE of our support functions120211 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedEmailMultiple factors: avg. workload, no. of clients, size of the clients, change in support remit, etc.Quantifying the workloadExciting: Expanding the remit of the team, taking more presales and postsales responsibilities. Worrying: nothing at this point
98
Europe1 to 49Less than 500 customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1200002000We outsource NONE of our support functions15111 to 20%We are mostly co-locatedPhoneChatEmailHeadcount, Customer Count, Ticket/Chat volumescare ressources, forecasting customer growth
99
North America50 to 49910,000 to 49,999$10.1 million to $50 million USDWe sell to other businesses (B2B)We sell to enterprise or government (B2E)We have subscription based revenueWe have sales based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)1000001500We outsource NONE of our support functions101211 to 20%We are mostly remoteEmailReply time analysisPlanning for 24/7 coverExcited about increasing customer self service via knowledge base
100
North America1 to 49100,000 or more customers$1.1 million to $10 million USDWe have subscription based revenueComplex (multiple products and features, multiple platforms, etc)350,0000We outsource NONE of our support functions601Less than 10%We have a mix of remote and co-locatedChatEmailSocial mediaCompeting with other departments/developer costs.Exciting - We're working on developing a new knowledge base, which we anticipate will bring down overall support traffic. Worrying - Team growth / product success.
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