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Creating Effective Customer Messages (OSS Notes)

One skill that is completely under-appreciated is the ability to write an effective SAP customer message. It often is the difference between getting a critical issue corrected by SAP or being stuck on your own. Below is a summary of tips I’ve garnered by trial and error from writing customer messages  on writing effective customer messages as well as help from others listed in the “Special Thanks” section:

 

Be Courteous…

The support representatives on the other end from you are people. Begin your messages with “Greetings” and “Regards” as you would correspondences with anyone else. Frame your descriptions in a diplomatic tone.

 

…But Describe Your Issue As An Error

SAP support does not handle product “suggestions”. If they get the sense that you are asking for a new feature, they will shut down the requests. Therefore, whatever it is that you are asking about should be described as something that is not working as designed.

 

Be Thorough

The more precise you are, the easier it is for the support representative to understand the problem. You want to limit the number of follow up questions from the person who is on the other end. Also, by describing the issue well, you also let the support person know that you are knowledgeable and so your request should be taken seriously. 

 

Always Include Screen Shots

A picture is worth a thousand words and aids in diagnosis

 

Re-Read Before Sending

Make sure it’s clear how you’re describing the issue

 

Mention Any Notes You Have Already Applied, As Well As Notes You Have Considered

By doing this you signal to the support representative that you have made a serious effort to solve the issue on your own.  Plus, by thoroughly researching existing notes, sometimes you can.

 

Include Your Support Pack Levels 

This can save you a round of questions from the support representative.

 

Lastly…Keep You Cool

Sometimes things that seem obvious from the outside are not so apparent to the representative. If you get a ‘no’ and it’s a gray area, you may be better off accepting the ‘no’ and going on. I have heard from people within SAP that discourteous, unknowledgeable people are less likely to have their issues resolved. Being seen as obstinate on one issue may work against you on the next one.

 

Special Thanks

Luke Marson, Emeritus

Virgil Blipton, Independent Consultant

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