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How Snowflake Support Uses Data to Improve the Customer Experience

Customer advocacy is one of the Snowflake Support team’s most important roles. Working closely with customers around the world every day, we listen and learn to gain meaningful insights into Snowflake products, the ways our customers use those products, and the challenges they face. We feel a deep responsibility to take those insights and trends, analyze them, and drive positive change on behalf of Snowflake customers. 

In my last blog post, I discussed continuously improving the Snowflake customer experience at every touchpoint. The Customer Experience Analysis (CXA) program is one of the many ways we operationalize that mindset. Through ongoing support case analysis, the CXA Program targets two outcomes that are rooted in advocacy for you as our valued customers: 

  • For issue types that require support interaction, we optimize troubleshooting to help solve issues faster and provide feedback for Product improvements.
  • For the subset of issues that lend themselves to being “optimized away,” we simplify products, features and self-serve resources so that it’s not necessary to contact Snowflake Support.

Leveraging real-world data from customer cases and feedback, we proactively surface opportunities for our Product, Engineering, and Support teams to improve. Looking across all support case interactions allows us to provide tangible, objective findings and truly advocate for our customers. We pay particularly close attention to Customer Effort Score feedback shared through post-case surveys, where customers react to the statement “Snowflake made it easy for me to handle my issue” on a scale of 1 (“Disagree”) to 5 (“Agree”).

How we learn from every support interaction

Snowflake Support is in a unique position of having rich, contextual information about areas of opportunity for improvement across Snowflake’s customer support journey—as you’d expect, we talk to our customers frequently! We average over 3,000 support case touchpoints with our customers per week, giving us a wealth of content and context to identify the potential pain points our customers are experiencing. 

With this data in hand, we hold ourselves accountable to: 

  • Identify trends in support case creation, both quantitative and qualitative: We look for specific cases that require a high volume of troubleshooting data, and subsequently take a long time to resolve. Or we might uncover an issue that results in many short-but-avoidable case interactions. In either situation, we’re able to analyze the data and implement solutions to improve the experience or even remove the need for an interaction altogether.
  • Assess the impact to our customers in terms of time, effort, or product experience: We put ourselves in the customers’ shoes and identify how the situation impacted their Snowflake usage, or the amount of effort they needed to put in to obtain a successful resolution.
  • Make data-backed recommendations that will yield a customer-facing improvement: Enhancements to the Snowflake Product, self-serve capabilities, new knowledge base articles, clarified documentation, and even proactive communications to our customers are possible, and desired, outcomes.
How we turn learnings into improved customer experiences

After we identify meaningful improvement opportunities, we advocate on behalf of customers with our Engineering and Support Enablement teams at recurring touchpoints. Here are just a few examples of positive change we’ve driven as a result of the CXA program: 

  • Improvements to query incidents impacting our customers: We analyze the top query incidents our customers are facing—such as Out of Memory Errors (OOMs)—and leverage telemetry data about these errors to identify where we can improve error messages and documentation. If the product helps a customer understand solutions they can implement directly, we eliminate the need to open a support case.
  • Self-service to enable PrivateLink: We’ve worked with the Engineering team to make it possible for customers to enable PrivateLink for AWS and Azure without requiring a support case interaction. This capability launched with Snowflake release 6.15, opening the door to self-service that will save time for customers enabling this security feature.
  • Debugging / troubleshooting improvements for cloud support engineers: We are continuously assessing the debugging and troubleshooting tools used by cloud support engineers (CSEs) to resolve cases. On a regular cadence, we hold feedback sessions with CSEs and engineers, analyze case data to understand potential bottlenecks, then deliver input to tool development teams on approaches that could improve our case resolution time.
  • Improving connector troubleshooting: In the process of setting up a connection to the Snowflake platform, customers can find themselves up against any number of network, security, or proxy configurations that may impact initial connections. Our debugging tools can help both our customers and Snowflake Support highlight areas that need corrective action and remove unseen roadblocks.

The CXA Team doesn’t just analyze Snowflake customer data—we are also Snowflake customers ourselves. We use the Snowflake platform to store, analyze, and interact with and report out the data that makes up the foundation of this entire effort, including:

  • Support case interactions and metadata enriched with engineering touchpoint data (defects, enhancements, release information, etc.)
  • Customer satisfaction survey results
  • Support case quality reviews
  • Annual customer experience relationship surveys

Using Snowflake as the basis for our data and analysis also provides us direct insight into the experience of using our products. We include our own experiences as additional data points in our feedback loop with engineering teams to continuously improve our products, services, and overall customer experience. Look for more details on Support’s Snowflake-on-Snowflake efforts in a future blog post.

The Snowflake Support organization is proud to advocate for customers using a data-driven, truly customer-centric approach in partnership with our fantastic Product and Engineering teams. The CXA program is off to a great start!

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