Tuesday, August 07, 2012

IT Service Desk Calls You Can Eliminate

Beyond the fact that it’s frustrating to handle repeat service calls that didn’t really require the IT service desk in the first place, it’s also costly. It takes valuable resources away from business critical help desk support issues. Here are three common IT service desk calls and what you can do to eliminate them.
  1. The “I forgot my password” call
    Ok, so the easiest, most effective way to handle the password reset call is with a self service option. But what happens when users prefer to call the IT service desk? That’s where a little marketing savvy goes a long way. Several companies have added interactive voice response technology that guides users through the password reset process. So while the user waits for the next available service desk technician, he or she is reminded that there’s a fast, easy way to reset his or her password. Or if your self service IT help desk portal has a top five or ten list, make sure the password reset issue is in the top three. It’s also good IT service desk practice to provide guidance on how to set up a password to make it easy for the user to remember, but hard for someone to hack.
  2. The “I don’t understand why the network is running soooooo slooooow” service desk call
    Many IT service desk calls don't really need the expertise of the IT service desk. With automation and self-help portals, IT service desk teams can eliminate three of the most common IT service desk calls.
    This call is often the result of a condition the IT service desk is already aware of such as a downed server or other outage. The best way to eliminate this type of service call is to use a multi-channel approach to notifying users. For example, add a pre-recorded message to the service desk phone line to notify users of the issue and let them know that you’re working on it. At the same time, the IT service desk can also send an email blast to users as well as post a notice of the outage on the self-service portal. This type of call, when there is no known outage or issue, can be indicative of a major problem. With monitoring software that’s integrated with the IT service desk, technicians can pinpoint a problem and act on it before the service desk queue becomes flooded with calls about the same issue.
  3. The popular “How do I <fill in the blank>
    Although this may seem like a cry for help, and often it is, it’s really indicative of a larger software training issue. How do I export my contacts? How can I add a widget to my SharePoint site? Why doesn’t my computer recognize this device? This is where the IT service desk and incident management software can add value to the company. With properly recorded tickets, the IT service desk can identify common end user issues and make their answers available in the knowledge base and for more challenging issues suggest a training course – or even offer to conduct the course over a few lunch-hour sessions. This is particularly helpful in reducing IT service desk calls following a major upgrade or installation of a new enterprise application. Better yet, if you know a new application is rolling out, start the training early to minimize service desk calls. Many organizations are using enterprise versions of a Twitter-like application where the service desk can “market” its training program or offer how-to tips. The same activity stream can also be monitored by a member of the service desk staff to look for trending topics or hashtags that indicate common issues that the service team can address en masse.
    We know it sounds cliché, but for many IT service desk calls “an ounce of prevention, really is worth a pound of cure.” Start with effective service desk software.

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