Framework Support is currently seeing the heaviest sustained contact volume that we’ve ever encountered since the formation of the team in 2021. With some of the customer experience challenges that we’re working through with Framework Laptop 13 (AMD Ryzen 7040 Series) combined with being in the middle of batch processing (Now Batch 5) resulting in the shipment of thousands of Framework products globally, we’re having to get very creative with ticket triage, and we’ll be working this week on additional optimizations to streamline the process. Order modification requests are now 40% of the contact volume with some customers having three or more subsequent tickets in queue with requests for changes just prior to shipment. To assist our team, if you could please review your Framework Laptop 13 (AMD Ryzen 7040 Series) or even your Framework Laptop 16 orders now, regardless of Batch, to make sure we can get your edits done in Support in a single request, that would help us out greatly in bringing the volume down.
Being absolutely transparent, we own the above issue which is contributing to the volume spike. Self-service order modification is something we’ve had in queue for development for a long time. The problem is that we’ve developed our system on an open-source eCommerce platform that allows for unlimited customization. Unfortunately, as a small company releasing products in quick succession (6 major products in less than 3 years), we’ve been perpetually in the NPI (New Product Introduction) phase. We’ve developed and bolted on new features as needed, but that connective tissue, over time, builds up tech debt that has to be addressed. Even for our agents via the Admin functionalities, order modification is complicated as the limitations of what can be modified or added is a complex process that can lead to orders requiring engineering intervention should a mistake be made. Opening up the functionality for customers to make their own edits, without taking into account all the complexities that exist, could lead to a catastrophic customer experience. While order modifications have been easily managed in the past by our team without service disruption, the percentage of order modification requests, and even multiples on the same order over a short period of time, has led to a continuous stream of time-sensitive contact volume. If we capture the final payment before those modification requests are completed, the order is locked and transmitted to our 3PL (3rd Party Logistics) partner for shipment processing. Attempting to modify an order that has already been transmitted is a painfully manual process which is rarely successful given that the order transmission kicks off a chain of events that is difficult, and sometimes impossible, to stop given how everything functions. Given all of this, we’ve scoped the development effort for self-service order modifications and we’ve made the project a priority. That said, it will be a challenge.
We’ve all rolled up our sleeves and are handling tickets in the queue. Many have likely received responses from me personally on Tier 1 or order modification tickets. You are probably asking, “Well, why doesn’t Framework just hire more people then?” Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. We partner with a BPO (Business Processing Outsourcing) company on Tier 1, 2, 3, Logistics, Loss Prevention, and B2B Support. As we do not believe in seasonality in hiring (which results in spikes of hiring and layoffs through stack ranking), we staff for average forecasted volumes. We understand that spikes in contact volume are to be expected, and we’ll temporarily fall out of normal response times, but we’ve always returned to a stable state fairly quickly. The current state has been an exception that we’ve had to adapt to. We’ve already brought on new Support resources and have more on the way, but new agents have to be trained, nest, and shadow to become production-ready, which can take time.
We know this has been frustrating and please know that we’re doing everything we can to respond as quickly as possible. Our oldest tickets without response are currently 7 days old (as of November 6th, 2023). If you haven’t received a response for longer than that, something else is at play, especially if it was your first submission and you haven’t received a response, ever. That means we likely aren’t seeing your submissions, or you aren’t seeing our responses. If you are using a custom email domain with custom rules, please make sure to whitelist @frame.work and @framework.kustomerapp.com. Also, please check spam folders or your routing settings as emails might be routed to other folders, etc.
Thank you for your patience during this extremely busy time for our small team. While we’d love to be at the scale and support capabilities of some of our large industry friends, we have a lot of growing to do across a number of areas. If you are in the support queue, please know that you haven’t been forgotten about, and we’ll be with you soon.