Add Online Forums to your Support Portal

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The best way to fully understand your customers is to go beyond their needs and identify/solve their problems. We have tried to make this easier for you in Zoho Support through the introduction of the

Forums


add-on
. This add-on is powered by

Zoho Discussions
. The add-on helps you setup a result oriented, online customer community where your community members can start general discussions, share ideas, report issues, ask questions etc, all under one roof.

With the Forums add-on, you can engage your customers in various ways:

  • Start discussion threads
  • Make product/service announcements
  • Manage your product roadmap through voting of Ideas
  • Convert forum posts as requests in Zoho Support and track them
  • and do much more

The Forums add-on supports all the features of the Zoho forum (http://forums.zoho.com/).

You can read more about the Forums Add-on at http://www.zoho.com/support/help/forums-addon.html. To enable the 15 day free trial of this add-on in Zoho Support, go to

Setup

->

Customer Portal Settings

->

Forums Configuration
. Subscriptions are available @ $10/forum/month.

Go ahead and setup your own forum with individual sub-forums for each of your departments. Start building your customer community today!

Enable Collaboration and Innovation in your Organization

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A recent

Harvard Business Review article
talks about the need for people across hierarchies, functions and geographies within an organization to collaborate. Your employees should be empowered to submit their ideas and suggestions across the hierarchy. And your top management should be able to provide feedback and guidance to employees across verticals. Also, companies/teams within the same parent organization should be able to bridge differences in objectives and work together towards organizational goals.

Another aspect of collaboration required within an organization, is to tap knowledge and experience for process improvement in a large, global organization. The article suggests the need for online tools that can be employed to bridge these gaps and to enhance vertical, horizontal and global collaboration within the organization.

An Online Discussion forum can help you perfectly achieve all the above objectives. Here’s how:


Process Improvement and Innovation

All your employees can participate in process improvement by suggesting ideas or reporting problems. Your Online Discussion forum can provide a variety of topics to post under. For example an employee can post a process improvement initiative or a new innovative idea under the ‘Propose an idea’ category.


Besides suggesting their own ideas or contributing by commenting on existing ideas, employees can also vote on ideas or on whether a particular comment contributes value to the idea.


    


Problem-Solving and Decision-Making

Knowledge and Expertise across various functions can be tapped for solving problems.


Discussion posts can be organized into categories, making it easier for employees to view or contribute to relevant discussions.


Employees should be able to follow, bookmark or email specific posts, so that they can easily collaborate across a geographically dispersed organization.


The look and feel of the discussion community should be customizable and brandable, making employees feel at home work irrespective of where they access the forum from.


At Zoho, we offer one such tool and have in fact, been using it extensively for encouraging collaboration within our own organization.

Zoho Discussions
lets organizations create powerful internal communities which are fully customizable and come with a host of collaborative features. Apart from the above mentioned features, Zoho Discussions comes with a few more

integrated features
that enable employees across teams to collaborate and contribute, thereby helping us constantly innovate around the products and services we create for you.

Another important community powered by Zoho Discussions, is our

Customer Support forum
where customers can discuss Zoho products with our employees and with one another.

Your organization too can benefit in more ways than one, from a hosted forum service like Zoho Discussions. Watch

target=”_blank”>
this video
to learn more: