How is Software Service Evolving? Hint: Customer Support is leading the way
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Software has taken over our lives since 2000. From Microsoft, PayPal and Zoom to Adobe and DocuSign, we cannot carry out certain tasks without software. Software is a program of information used by our computers to carry out tasks. Some software helps store data like documents and pictures, while some perform money transactions. Yet others help us in creating audio files and graphic designs. There is a vast world of software variety to choose from.

Software eliminates manual labour, and at the core of its heart, it is designed to automate. Until 2007, you could purchase a software program and take it home. You could install it on your computer, which meant you owned it. But now, software has evolved a lot from that. In 2022, it is more common for software to work as a service. Software companies build a software program and advertise it to the customer. The company then installs the product in their system and gives customers access to it for a certain amount of money a month. This amount could perhaps be a thousand dollars or a million dollars. This is how software has now evolved to be.

Why Software Services Evolved

The reason for this major evolution in software service is because much software became too complex to install on a machine and run locally. A customer would have to be connected to the internet 24/7 to run these heavy, complicated programs. There could be possible redundancies in installing these programs. For example, if you try to install an app on a phone that is not connected to the internet, you would simply fail to

install and run it.

Another type of software is one that stores all of the photos taken by your phone. If you don’t have another backup, there is a chance you could lose access to all of your photos by accident. This is where a software service like Google Photos comes in. The company will back up all your data for you for a subscription. Google Photos is a tool, while the fact that you can subscribe to it for photo backup is a service. Thus, many companies have built tools and offered them as services to aid in saving your photos. They include Amazon Photos, DropBox and OneDrive.

Indian IT companies

India is also fast seeing the growth of IT companies which provide such services. Some of the biggest companies are Tata Consulting Services (TCS), Wipro, Redington (India) Ltd and Infosys. A growing Indian start-up tech company is Hiver. Based in Bangalore, Hiver creates helpdesk software that helps client companies in managing ticket response, automated response and other types of customer service.

Customer Support—Make or Break for a company

Customer support can make or break a company. Poor customer support service can break a customer’s trust in the product and portray the company in a negative light. This results in alienating customers and other potential buyers.

A former customer (let’s name him Y) recounts his experience with Croma. Croma is a retail chain for consumer electronics and durables that gave Y a three-year warranty on a fridge compressor. However, when Y’s product was broken and he went to Croma to exchange it for a new one, the employees did not follow up with the warranty. They blamed the customer, saying, “it doesn’t fall under the policy. So we can’t help you.” The compressor cost Y about Rs 40,000. 

This is an example of poor customer care. Y no longer buys from Croma.

Good customer support helps the company’s overall performance immensely. If you can satisfy your customers and fix whatever issue they have instantly and immediately, it sends the message that your company prioritizes the customer. This makes the customer feel happy and seen. And because they know your company, that association will remain. If the service you provide is good, customers are likely to return.

Hiver’s innovation: Software providing Customer Support Service

On a normal day, your company might receive 50 emails regarding customer support. In a disaster, that figure could be 1000! You’ll probably have three to ten employees dealing with these emails. Imagine if Swiggy or Blue Dart went down on a busy day… it would be a major fiasco for them. Thousands of app users will send emails to the company, asking for help.

How will a company with few customer care workers deal with this?

Hiver is a Bangalore-based tech startup which has built a tool to help your company with customer support at a large scale. Hiver writes different strategies for companies to adopt to deal with such crises.

Imagine that you are getting thousands of such requests daily. Every day. You need AI’s help badly. Hiver designs flowcharts where if a concerned customer asks for a refund, the customer receives an automatic response to send the company a picture of the damaged product. If the customer doesn’t ask for a refund, the flowchart directs the programming to send the customer a goodbye message. This is only one of the many

types of flowcharts Hiver has created to help minimize the manual labour needed by companies to deal with customers daily.

Another flowchart is created like this: If the ticket received by the company is one day old, the flowchart allows the customer support employee to wait for a day before reminding them about the customer’s request. A ticket has a maximum period without the employee replying. Sometimes it is 72 hours.

You can communicate with a colleague via Hiver’s software, asking them “How much refund should I give?” Or your boss might skim through the thousands of refund requests/complaints received by you, and ask you about a specific request and which order it was for. How will you track it back? Since many thriving companies receive over ten thousand tickets a month, it is not possible to remember every order, refund request or customer support message. You can trace a case or action through this software. Hiver’s software stores all these conversations in a log. So now, the boss won’t poke you regarding a past operation but go to the other employee who is meant to look over this data.

Yet another flowchart design decides on the percentage of refund to be given to the dissatisfied customer by basing it on the customer’s emotions. If they are really upset (decided by either star-ranking or a custom message), the program then gives them a 40 to 50 per cent refund. It also follows up on the customer to see how they receive the

refunding decision. If it worked, the program closes the refund.

Hiver helps you with accountability and feedback. It sees the customer satisfaction rates and keeps track of them as well as tracks the stars and rankings for representatives of each case. Hiver builds software to keep track of all these operations.

So one may ask, “how is Software Service evolving?” It has evolved to offer software programs and run them from the company’s computers. And companies developing programs to manage customer support are leading the way. Customer satisfaction plays a major part in the successful performance of a company. So start-ups are noticing this niche and helping fill that.

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