Take the 2-minute tour ×
Programmers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Say, you have a team of 5 developers and your inhouse customers demand a reasonable support availability of say 5 days a week, 9am-6pm.

I can imagine the following scenarios:

  • the customers approach the same guy, every time. Downside: single point of failure, if the guy is unavailable.
  • each developer is assigned one week of support duty. Downside: how to you distribute the work evenly in times of planned (vacation) and unplanned (sickness) unavailability?
  • each developer is assigned one day of support duty. Downside: similar to above, but not as bad.
  • a randomly picked developer handles the support request. Downside: maybe not fair, see above.

What is your experience?

share|improve this question

4 Answers 4

In your scenario, the whole team should handle support tickets until they are all replied at least twice a day. If one has finished before the others, he helps the others with their ticket.

The process should be triggered:

  • One time just after the stand up meeting (if you have one).

  • A second time in the afternoon.

Don't specify any rule. Let the team organize itself.

If it doesn't work, change something.

share|improve this answer

I would guess it's going to depend on your product, but there is a lot to be said for having the person responsible for the code in question do the support. It allows them to learn from their mistakes and see how the customers are using what they wrote.

If support is eating up a lot of time you may want to consider hiring on someone to handle that and filter out anything that does not actually require a programmer. This would generally be someone at a lower pay grade and would allow your coders to spend more time on what you are really paying them for - progamming. (also, I know a lot of programmers that don't have interpersonal skills on par with their programming skills so this could be better for the customers as well)

share|improve this answer

Just make sure you capture the questions and answers and create a FAQ or some other sort of resource. Subsequent queries can then first be directed toward the existing entry. You also need to track areas that generate a lot of calls as those may need rework. It's a pain, but eventually it pays off more than constantly answering the same questions over and over.

share|improve this answer

Adding to Pierre 303 response

  • The tickets should be assigned on priority based on the tasks at hand already on the developers table
  • While it might be a good idea to let every one handle all types of tickets.
  • It would still be best decided on the priority of the request and the relative exposure/experience proficiency areas of the developers.
  • Do you already use Trac or somethig similar?
share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.