Technical support is usually delivered over telephone, via email, over chat (IM) or using special software or software extensions that the user can employ to directly contact tech support. Technical support representatives are very familiar with the ins and outs of the products for which they provide support. If there is a problem that cannot be solved by the tech support, it is escalated to the development team and logged as a bug that should be fixed by a future product update or the next product iteration.
Here are just a few key types of technical support:
- Time and Material: This type of support is common in the tech industry. Also known as “break-fix” IT support, the payment of the materials and technician service charge falls upon the customer for a pre-negotiated rate.
- Managed Services: This is usually given to large-scale customers rather than individual consumers. A list of well-defined services and performance indicators are provided to the customer on an ongoing basis for a fixed rate, which is agreed upon on contract. Services provided could be 24/7 monitoring of servers, 24/7 help desk and the like. This may include on-site visits when problems cannot be solved remotely.
- Block Hours: This is a prepaid support system where the customer pays for a certain amount of time, which can be used per month or per year. This allows customers to use the hours flexibly without the hassle of paper work or multiple bills.