What's new in supportability for Microsoft 365
Published Oct 06 2022 10:00 AM 6,128 Views

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The Microsoft 365 commercial support team resolves customer support cases and provides support to help you be successful and realize the full potential and value of your purchase. Our support services extend across the entire lifecycle and include pre-sales, onboarding and deployment, usage and management, accounts and billing, and break-fix support. We also spend a considerable amount of time working to improve the supportability of Microsoft 365 services to reduce the number of issues you experience as well as minimize the effort and time it takes to resolve your issues if they do occur.


Our approach focuses on four key areas informed by deep analytics and insights:


1. Improve the Microsoft 365 workload services
Through deep partnerships with our engineering teams, we’re able to help improve all aspects of the service experience. This includes helping to design new features and wizards that are supportable and customer-friendly, as well as fixing many issues in the service directly with our in-house engineering experts.

2. Enable you to self-help
The Microsoft 365 admin center delivers a comprehensive online support experience, including a robust self-help platform powered by AI and machine learning. Our engineering experts train machine learning models as well as create and manage the solutions that get shown to you. They also develop inline diagnostics (Exchange/Outlook, Teams, SharePoint Online & OneDrive) that can often troubleshoot and resolve your issues automatically with minimal effort.

3. Help our support engineers solve issues faster
Our support teams around the world rely on diagnostic and troubleshooting tools, technical support guides and playbooks, and the ability to engage with deep technical subject matter experts, when needed, to ensure your issues get resolved in a timely manner. We work and contribute across all these areas to help our support teams keep pace with the high pace of production and feature releases from our product teams.

4. Tailor your support experience
We are constantly evaluating and testing ways to better deliver support services to meet the needs of all types of customers from the smallest businesses to the largest enterprises. As the solutions delivered by Microsoft 365 evolve and incorporate increasingly complex sets of technologies and services, our support services must strive to keep pace and balance the levels of specialization and expertise needed in our support teams.


The end goal with all of this is to ensure a set of support experiences are there to help you be successful – delivered digitally or by people – every step of the way.


Measuring impact and progress


Our team is continually evaluating data and signals coming in from a wide range of source including customer usage, service performance, support cases and issue drivers, self-help usage, and customer satisfaction and perception measures. From a supportability perspective, we tend to focus most on effort, because getting issues resolved quickly and with minimal effort correlates well with what customers tell us they want from support and in turn helps to drive higher satisfaction scores at an overall product level.


Some examples of metrics we use to measure and evaluate supportability on an ongoing basis are:

  • Incident rate: Ratio of support cases created to number of users
  • Resolution time: Total time it takes to resolve a support case from beginning to end
  • Escalation rate: Cases that require handling by a higher tier support team or a product group engineering team
  • Time in engineering: Time it takes to resolve issues that end up with product group engineering
  • Self-help success: Number of instances where a self-help solution resolves a customer issue


Key Considerations


As you can imagine, troubleshooting and driving supportability in cloud and hybrid cloud environments, which span many large, complex, and rapidly changing sets of systems, presents special sets of challenges, including:

  • Keeping pace with the velocity of release and production changes
  • Troubleshooting in a highly federated and distributed services model
  • Handling data in accordance with security, compliance, and privacy standards
  • Ensuring awareness of self-help solutions and technical documentation across all types of customers and partners


What’s Next


We hope you found this introduction interesting and insightful, and now know a little bit more about a team of passionate individuals working behind the scenes to continually improve and elevate your support experience with Microsoft 365. We look forward to sharing more details and examples in future posts about the ways we’re applying our technical, operational, and business expertise to bring you new tools, programs, and service enhancements to help you be successful.


In the meantime, check out these helpful articles to give you an idea of the different areas where we’re deeply engaged and actively working:


Brian Stoner is a Director in the Customer Service & Support (CSS) Modern Work Supportability Team where he leads a team of technical and business program managers.


The CSS Modern Work Supportability Team delivers innovative self-help solutions and diagnostics, in-service enhancements, and support programs to help customers get maximum value from their Microsoft 365 commercial subscriptions and create an easy-to-use, connected support experience.


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‎Oct 07 2022 04:40 PM
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