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40 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I FEBRUARY 2018 After a grueling month of research into the best medical insurance to invest in for 2018, we finally closed the deal back in December. I was therefore shocked to see new insurance cards arrive in the mail yesterday with a differ- ent plan name. As you can expect, I jumped on the phone and dialed my insurance company's customer support. Fortunately, the woman talking to me was a consummate customer support professional, and took care of my questions right away. As it turns out, someone had messed up and sent out incorrect cards to pre-existing customers for some unexplainable reason. Happily, this whole problem ended up being nothing that my paper shredder couldn't handle, and I was glad to emerge from this fresh hell so quickly. My experience with the insurance company's customer support depart- ment brought to mind some support experiences from my own past. For many years, I managed customer support for a PCB CAD software company, and I have seen my fair share of different support scenarios. Although some of my time with customers could be right- fully categorized as a nightmare experience, it was far more common for me to work with customers who were a pleasure to spend time with. Through it all, I have seen what custom- ers want and what issues they complain about most in their PCB design software. Here are some of those items; perhaps you can identify with a few of these. The Two Meanings of "How can I help you?" First, let's throw a leash around the elephant in the room and pull him out. That's my not- too-subtle way of saying, "Here are some things that designers want, but we in the sup- port business just can't give it to them." The first one that comes to mind: Cus- tomers have asked, manipulated, and even tricked me in their Customer Support: What Do PCB Designers Really Want? Tim's Takeaways Feature Column by Tim Haag, CONSULTANT

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