Disciplined Agile

Support Strategies

There are three categories of support strategies – direct assisted support, indirect assisted support, and self service – which may be combined. The strategies are described in the following table.

Support Strategy

Trade-offs

Direct assisted support. In small organizations you can take what is known as a direct-support strategy, often called the “you build it, you support it” strategy in DevOps, where end-users contact the delivery team directly for support.

  • End users get expert help from the delivery team itself; Team members gain a better understanding of how end-users work with their solutions
  • Requires team members to be available, able, and willing to support end users
  • Works well for small organizations with a small number of products and that have a small number of end users
 

Indirect assisted support. Large organizations often have a support/help desk organization providing support to all end users, in some cases routing complicated incidents to the delivery team responsible for a given solution.

  • End users get expert help from the delivery team itself; Team members gain a better understanding of how end-users work with their solutions
  • Requires team members to be available, able, and willing to support end users
  • Works well for small organizations with a small number of products and that have a small number of end users
 

Self service. Many organizations are offering sophisticated self-service support offerings, including but not limited to discussion forums, online help, how-to videos, tutorials, and more.

  • Effective when you are dealing with very large numbers of end-users, in the millions or even hundreds of millions; Dramatically reduces the number of support-desk requests that you receive
  • Still requires indirect and even direct strategies for complex or unique incidents
  • Commonly used for free or low-cost SAAS/PAAS systems or when end users are technical savvy
     

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