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Author's profile photo Former Member

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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      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member
      I would add:
      -Describe your problem with step by step instructions on how to recreate the issue.
      -Have an open connection ready so they can log on to your system.
      -Remember your language may not be the language that the support group is speaking.  Avoid slang.

      Creating the message is a skill. 

      Author's profile photo Francisco Milán Campos
      Francisco Milán Campos
      Note 1281633 - Speed Up Processing of a Customer Message
      Note 984434 - How to speed up customer message processing
      Note 90835 - SAP Message Escalation Procedure
      Note 67739 - Priorities of problem messages
      Note 36677 - Structure of components for customer messages 
      Note 607510 - Guidelines for more effective message processing
      Note 650389 - Effective creation of an OSS message for Netweaver Mobile
      Note 933631 - Guideline for a more effective message processing (SCM-FRE)
      Note 122722 - Message Creation - French Customers
      Note 873046 - Processing customer messages in English
      Author's profile photo Tobias Hofmann
      Tobias Hofmann
      Writing good OSS messages isn't everything: even when you attache screenshots, provide a clear description, logs, etc. it also depends on the support person on SAP's side; and sadly also on the checklist they are used to go through. I can write a book about my personal experiences 🙂
      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member
      I completely agree.  Although it helps to have everything to begin with, I could write one as well. 😉
      Author's profile photo Tobias Hofmann
      Tobias Hofmann
      Let's write one together.
      Due to my experiences, I already changed the way how I'm opening and processing messages:
      - adding way more information
      - detailing the notes already applied / consulted
      - to speed things up, I anticipate the next question (aka: I'm reverse engineering the AGS checklist 🙂

      br, Tobias

      Author's profile photo Jeyakanthan A
      Jeyakanthan A
      Excellent tips
      Author's profile photo Francisco Milán Campos
      Francisco Milán Campos
      To get familiar with the Customer Message Creation process it is worth to take a look at the file "OSS Procedure.pdf", this is an Accelerator included as part of the ASAP Methodology, -I’m sorry but I don’t have the URL to access it directly.

      More information on this topic available through the links below.

      "Customer Messages Creation in the SAP Support Portal", by Anat Ozerbach.
      http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/scn/go/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/10f30e90-9213-2b10-53a5-e1c38643b4af?QuickLink=index&overridelayout=true

      "How to Create a Support Message in SAP Service Marketplace"
      http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/scn/go/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/4022239b-80f0-2c10-40aa-98173299a320?QuickLink=index&overridelayout=true

      Author's profile photo Francisco Milán Campos
      Francisco Milán Campos
      Found another SAP Note related to this topic.
      1122407 - "Prerequisites for analyzing customer messages in BW-BEX-OT"