Service & support portal offers more control over IT

A win-win situation. That is the result of the new Service & Support Portal from Simac. Store employees can report incidents even more easily and inquire about their status. Retailers get more insight and control over IT performances. And Simac has more time left to improve the service.

Has that network problem from yesterday been resolved yet? Who should I ask for a new printer? And have we had problems with the scale before? Shop assistants can now find answers to these and many other questions in the Service & Support Portal of Simac.

"Every store employee with a computer account can log in to the portal and report an incident themselves, request information or submit another request."

Monique van Thoor- product owner servicedesk, Simac IT NL

Thanks to the new portal, customers no longer have to wait on the phone until Simac's service desk can tell them when the field service engineer will come by. A few clicks are enough to request a new keyboard or hand scanner. "With the Service & Support Portal, we can serve our customers even better. Stores now have much more insight and control over the performance of their own IT environment and its support," explains Monique.

Interviews with stores

The idea of a service portal is not new. Simac already had a portal that some customers used. Store employees could report an incident there, but that was it. Checking the status of an incident was only possible if the employee had remembered or noted down the incident number. “Requesting a new printer was also one of the portal's capabilities, but only through a simple and error-prone form,” says Monique. 

Jumbo was one of the companies that used this portal. During the fixed evaluation talks, it became apparent that the supermarket chain needed more information about incidents. Jumbo also wanted the employees in the store to be able to solve more problems independently.

"We interviewed employees from a number of pilot stores and asked which specific functions they wanted to see in a portal. We used that information in the development of the Service & Support Portal."

Taking photos

As a result of the interviews, Simac is now also busy developing an app that provides access to the same Service & Support Portal. “Why? Because a store employee, of course, doesn't sit at the computer all day. They are active on the shop floor and want to be able to report a malfunction right away without having to walk to the office first. In addition, an app offers even more possibilities. Think of scanning the barcode on the device. Or taking a picture that is immediately added to the file.”

When there is a major disruption affecting more stores, the employees see it immediately after opening the app. “Then they see a bar on the screen stating which disruptions are known at that moment. A few clicks are enough to indicate that their store is also affected by the disruption. They no longer have to call and then wait a long time to report something that was already known.”

Live at jumbo

Simac first tested the Service & Support Portal in twelve stores of Jumbo. During the test, employees were regularly questioned about their experiences. All of these have been processed in the current version, which has been available for all seven hundred Jumbo stores since June 3. 

"We have integrated the Service & Support Portal into the digital workplace of Jumbo. When an employee logs in via a pc, laptop or tablet, he immediately sees a tile on startup that gives him access to the portal."

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“We have spoken with customers to discover what they need. Particularly at the headquarters of retailers, there seems to be a great need for more insight. Entering a store name or store number should be enough to inquire about the whole history of that store. Do the employees there often report incidents or not? Which IT devices cause the most problems? And which reports are still open?”

Instructional videos

The Service & Support Portal also offers tips and tricks that store employees can use to solve problems themselves. For example, the portal includes instructional videos for the ten most common notifications. In the future, a chat function will be added, so that employees can communicate even more easily with the service desk.

“The portal is not only convenient for store employees, but also for branch managers. They have access to a dashboard with all notifications from the past seven days. Also from the other stores that they are responsible for. The service managers of both the customer and Simac also have better control over the operation. They have more overview and know better which incidents deserve priority. And the service employees spend less time calling and emailing, so they have more time to improve the service.“

What is striking is that the portal not only offers the opportunity to file complaints, but also to give compliments. “At the moment we receive more compliments than complaints,” Monique laughs. “That's very nice. It shows that customers highly appreciate the improved service.

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