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Supernus is a US-based award-winning pharmaceutical company that specializes in treating diseases of the central nervous system. Some of the company’s most successful products include ground-breaking medication to treat Parkinson’s, depression and ADHD. In 2020, Supernus was recognized by the Financial Times as one of America’s fastest growing companies.
One of Supernus’ core values is ‘Caring’. This philosophy extends not only to patients, but also to internal staff. For the IT department, this means ensuring that each of the 800 end-users working at Supernus get their requests resolved efficiently. We spoke to Alejandro Massuet, IT Support Services Manager and Jem Burr, Support Services Supervisor at Supernus, to understand how Freshservice helps the IT team deliver on this promise.
Before moving to Freshservice, Supernus offered multi-channel IT support through email, phone and direct walk-ups. Alejandro Massuet and his team identified four main challenges with this legacy system:
“The lack of these clear processes was hindering operational excellence,” reflects Alejandro. “We envisioned a new solution that would be the single repository for all IT service requests and incidents.” The search for this new solution started with an in-depth evaluation of leading IT helpdesk solutions. Supernus had a partnership with Gartner and so the team looked into solutions that were listed as visionaries on Gartner. “Freshservice was listed as a strong up-and-coming solution for mid-sized businesses. This piqued our interest and so we looked deeper into it.” Right from the engaging sales pitch to the quick implementation time of 4 weeks, it was clear that Freshservice was tailored to Supernus’ requirements.
Speaking about the onboarding experience with Freshservice, Alejandro says, "I had a really good experience with my first engagement. The technical lead was very knowledgeable and always willing to answer all questions we had. I love the way Freshworks outlines implementation projects by creating Service Requests within the tool, so you start having exposure as end users right off the bat. During the onboarding, we had touchpoints at least every week to follow up, track progress, review blockers, and set goals for next meetings."
“Before onboarding with Freshservice, we had a conversation about our common vision and the IT initiatives we wanted to launch in the near future. We realized that Freshservice already had a solution for these, which convinced us that the solution would support our future scaling plans.”
IT Support Services Manager
Alejandro sees Freshservice as a powerful enabler in the company’s internal vision to grow horizontally and vertically. As he explains, “By horizontally, we mean having the same processes spread across the organization. Regardless of the service area, we want our users to be able to log in their service requests through a single portal.” With every new department that comes onto Freshservice, the company gets closer to realizing this vision. While Freshservice initially started out as a help desk solution for the IT team, it is now being used by Facilities, Purchasing, Finance and Lab Services. Whenever an employee has an issue related to these departments, for example faulty lab equipment, they can simply raise a ticket on Freshservice and it will be routed to the right team.
The IT department wanted to create new processes that could increase efficiency. Asset management was an important part of that strategy. Supernus had a different tool to manage assets but they quickly migrated this feature as well to Freshservice. “The fact that Freshservice can integrate with Microsoft Intune is very beneficial for us. With this integration, we have been able to manage and discover all assets within a single platform,” says Alejandro. Two features that he also believes will be critical to the efficacy of the IT team are release management and change management. “We plan on implementing these modules very soon in Freshservice. I love that the solution is ITIL4 certified and gives us the flexibility to define the three types of change: normal, standard and emergency.”
The lack of visibility into actual ticket metrics and team performance was a major challenge for Supernus. Once Freshservice was implemented, Alejandro was determined to use the solution to gain actionable insights into how to improve the IT team’s performance. But to do this, there first had to be sufficient user adoption of the tool. “On an average, we get around 1000 tickets per month. Our goal was that within five months of introducing Freshservice, 50% of those tickets should come in through the portal.”
With this goal in mind, the IT team launched a slew of initiatives to drive user adoption of the solution. 6 weeks before Freshservice was introduced, the team sent out internal marketing campaigns to announce the roll-out of the portal, its benefits and how to raise a request through it. Once Freshservice was officially launched within Supernus, agents took the initiative to increase awareness of the platform. If an email request came in that matched a service item on the portal, agents would show the user how to raise the request over Freshservice instead. These measures paid off. “Instead of 5 months, we achieved our target within 3 months!” says Alejandro. This number is only going up further. “Last month, 80% of tickets raised for all departments combined was through Freshservice. Compared to other companies within our industry, we are doing very well!” he says.
Freshservice has become the central repository from which the IT department fulfills all service requests. This is partly due to the flexible architecture of the solution that supports numerous integrations. Two integrations from the Freshworks Neo Marketplace that the team expects will improve internal collaboration are the Docusign and MS Teams integrations. “We plan to use Docusign for contract management as it will allow us to draft and finalize contracts completely right within Freshservice. We also heavily rely on MS Teams and so it’s great that Freshservice is able to integrate with it. We are planning on using AI and ML more extensively within our department and the Virtual agent/Service bot available in the MS Teams integration will be a very important part of that goal,” says Alejandro. The Freshservice-MS Teams integration, enables Supernus’ teams to manage and resolve IT incidents within their channel of choice - MS Teams.
Possibly the biggest transformation that Alejandro has observed after implementing Freshservice is a fundamental shift in the IT culture. Because the original system in place was largely informal, there were no predetermined performance benchmarks or processes in place to measure the effectiveness of service delivery. Alejandro describes it as a lack of an ‘SLA culture’.
Today, however, the team uses Freshservice Analytics (backed by the Neo platform) extensively to understand how they’re performing and what areas need improvement in delivering exceptional services to their employees. “We have become a more customer-centric IT department,” states Alejandro. “Our agents take complete ownership over tickets and want to solve our users’ issues as quickly as possible. As a result, we have over 98% tickets solved within SLAs!”
Tracking performance is made all the more easy through Freshservice’s simple and customizable reports and analytics. Previously, creating reports was a task in itself because department heads would have to collate data from multiple sources and add them to a spreadsheet. With Freshservice, all of that information is available at their fingertips. “I can view metrics like team performance and customer satisfaction at a single glance! Having these comprehensive reports is excellent because we now have the data to make informed decisions.”
When Supernus made the decision to implement Freshservice, they weren’t just onboarding a new solution, but changing the very nature of their work and how they deliver service to their employees. The team had to outline and formalize many of its processes, comply with ITIL v4 and set clear expectations for delivery of IT service. This has given end-users the guarantee that their requests will be resolved efficiently and accurately every time. As Supernus continues on its mission to develop innovative new drugs, it will be supported by a strong IT team that can easily scale to meet growing demand.
“Before Freshservice, we didn’t have the processes and automations that we do now. Today, we are much more efficient in resolving issues that our end-users have. Our long-term vision is to integrate every department that handles service requests into Freshservice.”
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