Has your organization reached a point where you are thinking about automating issue tracking?
When there is too much going on, it can become impossible to monitor it all. Issues fall through the cracks, important problems get overlooked and the organization suffers.
Whether your issues involve tracking incidents, problems, tasks, regulations, bills, or reports, the ten symptoms described below are signals that your business needs issue tracking software.
1. Important issues get lost.
Some organizations have people submitting issues multiple ways: phone, email, paper, even a hallway conversation. That's alright, except when they're not consolidated in one place, it can become very easy for issues to fall off the radar.
2. Employees and managers waste too much time trying to find out what's going on.
The lack of information on an issue's status slows down response times and affects customer service and satisfaction. When an issue comes in, employees and managers need to track who is working on it and what actions are being taken. Monitoring this information without software means holding more meetings than might otherwise be needed, and spending a lot of time on the phone or in email to get updates from the people who are working on the issue.
3. Customers don't know if their issue has been resolved.
Submitters will feel frustrated when they don't know if someone is working on their issue. This affects customer satisfaction. Some submitters will repeatedly request updates from someone they know, who may or may not be the right person, which can interfere with that person's work.
4. Employees don't realize they've been assigned an issue.
When affected employees don't know about an issue or its progress, it could lead to overlapping work, or worse, no one working on the issue. Some issues involve multiple teams; the more people who are involved, the harder it is for people to communicate seamlessly.
5. Management can't tell who is working on what.
It's daunting to track everyone's schedules and assignments for multiple projects with many tasks. This becomes a bigger problem when there's no central place for updates. Managers can't make tactical and strategic decisions without information, so they can spend a lot of time tracking down individuals to get updates on the issues they are working.
6. Some employees have too many issues to resolve while others have few.
Without an easy way to see who is and is not available, managers struggle to maximize employees' time based on availability.
7. Getting reports takes too long.
The only way to get reports is to have employees manually collect the data and convert it into readable reports. This can lead to errors. Because of the time involved to create a report, the report may be outdated by the time it reaches management.
8. You can't leverage problems you've already solved.
Employees start from scratch every time an issue comes in. There are no standard responses or best practices that can be shared, and employees don't necessarily respond to everyone with the same level of professionalism.
9. Managers don't know the cost of resolving specific problems.
It takes a long time and a lot of coordination to manually figure out how much it costs to resolve specific issues. Without that information, it's hard to justify changing your department's budget to meet the increasing volume of work you handle.
10. You could face legal penalties for not having a record of all activities surrounding problems and projects.
This is a costly problem to have, especially in organizations needing to comply with rules, regulations and standards like Sarbanes-Oxley and HIPAA. These require precise recording of events, audit trails, transactions and other activities. A manual process or using a spreadsheet leaves room for mistakes.
How many of these signs do you recognize?
If you're like most groups that start using issue tracking software, at least three or four of these will be very familiar. The good news is that fixing those problems – by automating your processes with issue tracking software – can be a simple and straightforward process.
And once you've done that, you'll find your employees becoming much more productive as they are able to devote more time to solving problems and less to tracking down information and updating others. Your managers will have better information at their fingertips, so decisions can be made faster. And you'll be able to provide a higher quality of service to customers, which improves customer satisfaction and retention.
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