Mentor Graphics Adds Online Database to Customer Support Offerings


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Wilsonville, Ore. — Mentor Graphics Corp. announces the SupportNet KnowledgeBase, a support database that gives customers instant online access to the most up-to-date information on Mentor's products and solutions to commonly encountered design problems.

The SupportNet KnowledgeBase system provides a list of relevant solutions to a customer's question within an average response time of 15 seconds. Now Mentor Graphics customers have around-the-clock access to the combined expertise of Mentor's global team of 300 corporate applications engineers (CAEs) in a sophisticated database. The SupportNet KnowledgeBase system provides an alternate channel to existing telephone or online customer support, by giving customers the flexibility to search independently online for the information they need and offering immediate, qualified responses to the problem at hand.

To ensure that users can quickly locate the most relevant information, the SupportNet KnowledgeBase system includes advanced searching capabilities, such as natural language search and refine search functions. The SupportNet KnowledgeBase system is part of Mentor Graphics award-winning customer support services and expands the capabilities of the company's innovative SupportNet Web site.

Customers access KnowledgeBase through Mentor's SupportNet Web site with a password login and simply type in their question as they would ask it. The SupportNet KnowledgeBase system then brings up the related TechNotes topics, sorted by relevancy. Powered by technology from Primus Knowledge Solutions, a leading provider of knowledge management and natural language search software, the SupportNet KnowledgeBase system features rapid response times and an intuitive interface. It allows users to refine their criteria to search further within the results for more specific information. In addition to the question-based search, users can find information by selecting from a list of symptoms and product names. As they find the answers to their questions, users can print, e-mail or bookmark the appropriate TechNotes. If the customer does not find an appropriate solution in the search results, they can open a Service Request, pre-populated with their customer information and question, from within the TechNote with a single click. To help customers identify the information that is most relevant to them, each TechNote is organized in three sections, Symptoms, Solution and Environment and the TechNotes fall into six categories: Patch, Release, Defect, Solution, Enhancement and Business. The SupportNet KnowledgeBase system provides an effective way for Mentor's CAEs to capture and share knowledge with customers and each other. Since establishing the system in December 2002, Mentor has compiled more than 11,000 TechNotes in the SupportNet KnowledgeBase system. As part of their workflow, each Mentor CAE creates a knowledge record each time they answer a customer's support request. By capturing each solution, this process reportedly limits duplicate defect and problem reporting, and allows other customers to benefit from rapid and consistent expert responses to questions that have been answered for others. Before being added to the SupportNet KnowledgeBase system, each knowledge record is reviewed and verified internally and then incorporated into the database. The new knowledge capture workflow has become a well-integrated part of Mentor's CAEs processes, with new TechNotes being added at a rate of more than 600 a month.

Mentor Graphics Corp. is a world leader in electronic hardware and software design solutions, providing products, consulting services and award-winning support for the world's most successful electronics and semiconductor companies. For more information, visit www.mentor.com.

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