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Enterprise SaaS: Service and Support is Vital for Growth

Too many Enterprise SaaS and Cloud vendors focus their efforts on marketing and spinning a good story to attract new customers, rather than spending time or money looking after those customers once they have signed on. Once the ink is dry on the contract ongoing service and support seems to be an afterthought.

According to newly released global research from The Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), Enterprises value SaaS applications, particularly for email-management, but customers are facing significant service and support challenges plus a lack of ongoing aftercare from their SaaS vendors.

The “SaaS with a Face” report, which asked 248 global companies currently using SaaS-based e-mail management about their usage and service satisfaction, indicates the problem is so bad that of non-Mimecast SaaS customers 22% are looking for a new SaaS email management vendor.

Given some of the largest and most aggressively marketed vendors in the Cloud email management space are publically listed companies, it’s quite clear their drive to attract new customers is part of a shareholder-pleasing business plan. Ongoing aftercare and customer satisfaction seem not to be a concern to them.

If these vendors want to grow, they need to wise up about their customers’ expectations. Service and support is a vital addition to an Enterprise SaaS product offering; simply delivering a fancy Web 2.0 interface, or expecting your customers to fend for themselves on support forums is not enough. The ESG SaaS with a Face report identified that 66% of customers cited vendor support as an important vendor selection criteria, only 34% noted that they had actually achieved improved service and support compared to traditional software vendors. It would seem that well-known cloud vendors are letting their customers down.

The impact of bad service and support by SaaS email management vendors are wide and have a significant impact on their customers. When asked what service and support challenges customers faced with their SaaS email management vendor the list of problems indicates a severe lack of aftercare; for example 27% of non-Mimecast customers were not able to find the right person to solve their problem. A further 15% reported inexperienced support staff, while missed SLAs and long support wait times were reported by 18% and 17% respectively. Worryingly 12% of non-Mimecast customers cited that some problems were never resolved.

For a true Enterprise SaaS vendor, offering industry leading service and support is an essential part of the relationship we have with our customers. Unlike other SaaS and Cloud email management vendors who build their solutions by cobbling together a collection of acquired of OEMd products, Mimecast’s infrastructure is purpose built by our own team. This means we are not tied to 3rd parties for customer service and importantly can support our own customers in the high standards they expect.

This personal level of involvement by all our service, support, development and customer facing teams means the Mimecast difference, or out “SaaS with a face”, really shows; our customers rate our award-winning customer support highly and, as a result, report satisfaction well above the industry average – 85% of Mimecast customers have no plans to move to a different vendor.

To read the complete ESG SaaS with a face report, click here. We also hope you like our infographic, embedded in this post, which reflects the findings of the report.