Monday, 14 April 2014

Is your IT Service Desk Still Effective?

Does your Service Desk need to evaluate its relevance to your business needs? For the most part IT organizations have set up a ‘help desk’ to address their business challenges with regards to IT. Over time IT has transitioned this to the Service Desk. The challenge is whether this has this been a transformation in name only.

First thing you need to realize is the way that the business uses IT is always changing. Think of about the way your business works compared to even just a few years ago. People are not tied to desks with computers all day, and when they are they have devices to augment this existence. They have become mobile and are leveraging an ever increasing wealth of external services from the cloud.

How has your Service Desk changed to meet this demand?

Coming back to your implementation of your Service Desk versus today, think about the following:

Ways you received escalations
When you started out you may have only received emails and phone calls to escalate issues. The first question is does this still support your business needs. Your business needs which are also ever changing may find these avenues inadequate. They may be looking to leverage information and modes of escalations to include messaging, social media as well as portals which have self-help knowledge articles. Your business is far better equipped to help themselves with the introduction of tools which are far more “user friendly” than they were in the past

Types of issues your customers experienced
As I mentioned above your tools have improved greatly with regards to usability. The challenge of this from the service desk perspective is that your business is able to look up thing online to help themselves in many cases. While this is great for them, the Service desk is limited in understanding the challenges that their customers face since they haven’t changes the way that they relate to their business. From their perspective the issues simply seem to be going away… unfortunately they are not

Ways you assisted your customers
In the past you may have relied on highly technical staff to triage and correct issues, mainly because they were seen as the people who fix things, so they should interact with the business. Now, as our technology has improved, the business requires a more customer friendly point of contact to facilitate the escalation. It is from there, when applicable, that the issue is routed to the appropriate technical support resources. It is in this interaction; whether it is online, on phone or something else which allows you to speak in business terms to better understand the business needs

Customer expectations
Your business is working in an economic climate which drives them to work as effectively and efficiently as possible. As such “time is money” and when they do not get the results they need they will look elsewhere for the answers they need. This is primarily where the term ‘Shadow IT’ comes into frame. But the need is there. If the Service Desk does not put itself back in a position to be a partner with the business to assist them in they will start looking elsewhere. IT needs to better understand the way in which the business works, not the other way around. Start by opening the dialogue to see where improvements can and should be made.

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