Passionate About Support? Come to our Conference on Advanced AI Tools Next March 27&28, Hosted by ServiceNow in San Diego.
AI tools are revolutionizing support! Want to find out how? Come to our conference and learn from those who are already doing it. Our conference is limited to 100 people, so you can get up close and personal with our speakers. They all know a lot about AI support tools and are willing to share. Conference hosted by:
Lily Ryzebol, Watson in Support Offerings Mgr at IBM
David Kay, Principal, DB Kay & Associates, Inc.
Sameer Patkar, VP Product Mgmt, Oracle Support
Sean Rivers, Director of Technology, Republic Wireless
Dan Nowitz, Application Owner of Digital Prototyping, Customer Success Operations, PTC
Jennifer Macintosh, VP Customer Experience, Coveo
Nitin Badjatia, Head of Business Strategy, Customer Service Management Product Line, ServiceNow
Robert Johnson, CEO of TeamSupport
Pradeep Rathinam, CEO of AnswerIQ
Alok Ramsisaria, CEO of Grazitti Interactive
Krishna Raj Raja, Founder & CEO, SupportLogic
Tom Sweeny, CEO, ServiceXRG
Giri Iyer, SVP Global Customer Support & Success, Rubrik
Dave Jobling, Sr. Program Mgr, User Experience Global Support Programs & Operations with Birgit Hansen, Content Mgr. Tableau
The topics are not listed as all presenters are speaking about AI Tools for Support. Several of them are from support organizations that have developed their own tools (PTC, Tableau). Several sell support applications like chatbots (AnswerIQ, Grazitti Interactive, SupportLogic), and some sell tools that are used to develop support applications (Coveo, IBM, Oracle). Two sell support software and have some AI tools as part of their offerings (TeamSupport and ServiceNow).Two are well-known industry consultants that have a keen outsider perspective (David Kay & Tom Sweeny). Two presenters, (Republic Wireless and Rubrik) have reviewed several vendors and implemented some of their tools. The topics are too similar to be of much help and might be confusing. The conference will be tightly focused. All attendees will be from support organizations, most are high level leaders. All of the presenters are support-savvy.
Non-Member pricing $1,250. Individual members pay $950, corporate members pay $850. Become a member for only $180.
Conference sponsored by:
ASP Free Webinar March 20 at 9:00am With Jennifer Macintosh, David Kay, and Al Hahn Discussing the Future of Support
Where is support going? Join us for a rousing discussion. Robert Johnson, CEO of TeamSupport will interview our panel as part of ASP’s partnership with TeamSupport for webinars. Jennifer is the VP of Customer Success at Coveo, David is the Principal at DB Kay& Associates, Inc. and a noted KCS consultant, Al is the Executive Director of the Association of Support Professionals. They are all speakers at our March Conference on Advanced AI Tools for Support. The webinar will be recorded, so if you register and cannot attend live, you can view the recording later. Go here to register (required).
Webinars in partnership with
2019 Top Ten Best Support Websites Competition Is On!
This is the 21st year that we have held this competition. We are now accepting entries and the deadline is April 30. Each entry is judged by at least five independent judges. Every company that enters receives a confidential custom report detailing their average scores in all 25 categories that are judged, compared with average scores for their size company. Judges comments are particularly valuable as they help explain their scores. They also tell companies the top three things that they need to do to improve their site. This is a very inexpensive way to get site audits and advice. Prices to enter are $700 for a small company, $900 for medium sized company, and $1,100 for a large company. When the competition is over an approximately 140 pages report will be published with essays from the winners, average scores, a list of judges, a trends analysis, and more. Go to AWARDS above and use the pull down menu for information and to enter.
ASP Partners With Coveo to Expand Newsletters
We have partnered with Coveo to expand our newsletter content and circulation. Starting this January we have added more articles and will continue adding content. This is part of our efforts to expand ASP that was requested by our Member’s Advisory Board.
Guest Article: Tom Sweeny profiles IBM’s Cognitive Support
In this Service Innovation profile, we feature IBM’s use of its own Watson technologies as a platform to deliver a new approach to service delivery – Cognitive Support. IBM’s Cognitive Support Platform introduces a layer of machine intelligence to supplement core support activities offering the potential to handle significant amounts of day-to-day effort allowing IBM Support staff to focus on issues that require their unique skills and experience.
IBM’s approach to Cognitive Support is subtle and elegant. They have introduced an intelligence into the end-to-end support delivery process that can learn and evolve to “augment and scale human knowledge and expertise.” IBM staff do not need to retool the system every time a new product is released; the system does not rely on a formal knowledge management process to create customer-consumable content; and customers do not need to choose between self-help and assisted support. The Cognitive Support Platform is fully integrated into IBM’s existing support delivery process. It is designed to assist when it can and when it cannot it learns for future situations.
When you deliver support at the scale of IBM every step towards efficiency and effectiveness is critical. Traditional efforts to transform IBM Support can have a positive effect, yet the potential efficiencies from IBM’s Cognitive Support Platform are transformational. This profile examines the capabilities of IBM’s Cognitive Support Platform and the innovative ways in which it is being deployed to help IBM Support deliver service excellence.
Tom is a consultant, researcher and friend of ASP. His website is https://www.servicexrg.com. This is an excerpt of his article, republished with his permission. ASP members can login, choose Articles from the drop down menu and download the complete article, which is much longer than this excerpt.
New Report On Advanced Artificial Intelligence Tools for Support is Online Now
The new generation of AI tools is going to revolutionize support. It is not just bots, but Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, Sentiment Analysis, and Predictive Analytics. These and more AI techniques will change the way that we deliver support and those changes are already underway. Our report has interviews with 13 different companies, including:
Some made their own tools and others bought tools. All of them have information to share with you. Many of the individuals interviewed will be presenting at our conference on AI tools in San Diego next March, hosted by ServiceNow. Members can just login and the report will be right there to download. You can purchase it for $360, but membership for a year only costs $180 and you get all of our reports.
Report on 2018 Top Ten Competition Available Now
This report on our twentieth annual competition features essays from all ten companies that were this year’s winners. It also has a trends analysis, average scores in all 25 categories that were scored, a list of judges, and much more. It can be purchased for $360 or you can become a member for a year for only $180 and get this report plus all of our other reports. To get it, just login and it will be right there.
2018 Top Ten Support Websites Announced
This is the 20th year that ASP has held a competition for the Top Ten Best Support Websites. Each site is judged by at least five independent judges, who are vetted for competency and conflict of interest with the site that they are judging. They score the sites in 25 different categories. Every entrant receives a custom individual report detailing their average scores versus the average score for their size company. Judges also provide comments that are priceless in determining how to improve the sites. ASP publishes an approximately 125 page report with essays for each TopTen site, trends in the year’s competition, average scores for each category and size company and more. This year’s report should be available by the end of August. The report is free to members and available to others for purchase. Just login to get the latest report. This years Top Ten are listed below in alphabetical order for each group. ASP does not list rankings. Please note that Ivanti, with it’s fourth Top Ten, joins our Hall of Fame.
Medium Sized Companies
Ivanti (Joins Hall of Fame)
BLOGS From Al Hahn & Other Industry Thought Leaders
Where is Support Going?
ASP’s conference March 27-28, hosted by ServiceNow in San Diego, is all about Artificial Intelligence (AI) in support. This, plus many conversations that I have had in the last year with support leaders has got me thinking about where support is going. This is, of course, the kind of thing that ASP cares about and should be frequently thinking about. There are many trends that are making a difference worth noticing, but three really stand out as far as making a significant difference. They are:
- The subscription economy
- Customer experience/success
- The new generation of AI
The subscription economy is significant in that it has changed the way that technology companies generate revenue in a very significant way. Instead of receiving revenue credit when a product ships (and the customer is invoiced for the whole price of the product), companies now get much smaller revenue every month or quarter as customers pay for their subscription. It typically tales 2-3 years to make any money on subscriptions. Customers can change products much more easily. This means that keeping customers happy is much more important as it basically equates with actually keeping your customers. Support is not all of the customer experience or customer success, but it is a very significant part of it. We have always felt that support was an important part of keeping customers, but subscriptions have put a fine point on this.
Subscriptions have really driven home the importance of the customer experience/success. Many companies have a Chief Customer Officer. To be sure, this is sometimes just lip service, but there is a real significance to the attention now paid to customer experiences and customer success. I believe that this is a long-term change. Certainly not all support leaders are taking advantage of this change, but some are. I encourage all of our leaders to rise to the challenge of this. Yes, the politics are scary, but it is better to try to take the strategic high ground than to be following the lead of someone who does not understand support or the effect we have on customers.
Finally, A I has achieved a new generation of maturity and is generating revolutionary changes in support, as well as many other areas. I really believe that bots will provide much of the level one support in the near future. They are already there in some companies. If you want to know more, come to our conference. All of these three trends cause me to think that the landscape is fundamentally changing. In the future, support may morph into more than it is today. I know that tech support people don’t like to hear this, but we have more in common with call centers that take orders than we want to acknowledge. They have the advantage that they generate lots or maybe all of a company’s revenue and they are taking advantage of that. I was made aware of a recent conference that was held for these folks and I was impressed with several things. First, it was big, very big. Attendance was in the thousands. Second, it was tiered. They had tracks for individual contributors through lower level managers, tracks for mid to upper level managers, and tracks for executives. They were providing educational experiences for all levels. Lastly, I noticed that they were using technology to a great extent. In fact, they were ahead of most support organizations in their use of technology. This is part of the difference between a revenue producing organization and a cost center. Having a P&L (profit and loss) center allows an organization to get more budget and make strategic investments that are much more difficult for cost centers. This is why we are a bit stuck on cost avoidance or call diversion in trying to justify budget requests. I think we should consider taking down the walls between support and “customer service” and merge these organizations as the fundamental aspects of keeping customers.
I realize that many people will not agree with me. I am not averse to being challenged or questioned, so bring it on! I will be delighted if many respond to this article. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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2018 Research Reports
2017 Research Reports
2016 Research Reports
2015 Research Reports
2014 Research Reports
2013 Research Reports
2013 Technical Support Salary Survey