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Four Easy Ways to Create a Chaos-free Help Desk

Level 9

In my previous post, I listed some best practices for help desk IT pros to follow to save time resolving issues. The responses I received from that post made me realize that the best solution for one IT organization may not necessarily be the same for another. An organization’s size, business model, functional goals, organizational structure, etc. create unique challenges for those charged with running the help desk function, and these factors directly affect IT support priorities.

With this knowledge in mind, I decided to take a different approach for this post. Below, I have listed some of the easy ways that help desk organizations – irrespective of their differences – can improve their help desk operations through automation to create a chaos-free IT support environment.

  1. Switch to centralized help desk ticketing
    Receiving help desk requests from multiple channels (email, phone, chat, etc.), and manually transferring them onto a spreadsheet creates a dispersed and haphazard help desk environment. Switching to a centralized help desk ticketing system will help you step up your game and automate the inflow of incidents and service requests.
  2. Automate ticket assignment and routing
    Managing help desk operations manually can lead to needless delays in assigning tickets to the right technician, and potential redundancy if you happen to send the same requests to multiple technicians. To avoid this, use a ticketing system that helps you assign tickets to technicians automatically, based on their skill level, location, availability, etc.
  3. Integrate remote support with help desk
    With more people working remotely, traditional help desk technicians have to adapt and begin to resolve issues without face-to-face interactions. Even in office settings, IT pros tend to spend about 30% of their valuable time visiting desks to work on issues. By integrating a remote support tool into your help desk, you can resolve issues remotely, taking care of on- and off-site problems with ease.
  4. Resolve issues remotely without leaving your desk
    A recent survey by TechValidate states that 77% of surveyed help desk technicians feel that using remote support decreased their time-to-resolution of trouble tickets. Using the right remote support tool helps you easily troubleshoot performance issues and resolve complex IT glitches without even leaving your desk.

These are some of the simple yet powerful ways that organizations can create a user-friendly help desk.

Are you managing your help desk the hard way or the easy way?

Four Easy Ways to Create a Chaos-free Help Desk.png

To download this infographic, click here. Share your thoughts on how you reduce workload and simplify help desk support in the comments section.

16 Comments
Level 10

I would add #5 - Train your user base!

I once read a quote that went (paraphrasing)

COO asks CIO

"What happens if we train our users, and they leave?"

CIO asks COO

"What happens if we don't, and they stay?"

MVP
MVP

Self service for some items like password resets.

This would take a load off many helpdesks.

Level 13

it saves us about 20% of our help desk calls.

Level 12

Some really great ideas here.  I would add that one of the pitfalls I've seen is that many efforts to streamline support lend themselves to an impersonal and/or detached experience for the end user.  I think that part of what leads to so many walk-up, drive-by, direct contact approaches from end users is the desire for a personal experience.  It's really difficult to find that happy medium sometimes.

MVP
MVP

Sounds good!   If only, our companies approach is very fragmented and haphazard.  They supposedly purchased ServiceNow though and maybe that's the first sign of them trying to do something positive in that area.   Not holding my breath though, they've been very slow at even starting to think about actually implementing it, much less wanting to look at or explore the potential connection to Orion.   Been over half a year since it was announced we'd be moving to it and haven't heard anything on it.  *SIGH*

I know we have Dameware, although most of the techs tend to use other tools like TeamViewer or Bomgar, or any number of other tools...

Please expand on item #2, where a Help Desk Application can automatically assign and route tickets.

How is the application configured so it "knows" which assignments are appropriate for each technician?

Do organizations create an evaluation test for techs to pass, and then their supervisor checks off their capabilities somewhere that the HD App can use to automatically assign the right level job to each individual tech?

Maybe the tech's job description or title includes some "level" that the HD Apps uses to understand if a tech can be given a particular job?

How does priority of incident figure in to assignments?

Can an HD App automation actually perform the tasks needed for routing & assignment better than the Help Desk staff?

Level 14

Train your help desk people on the systems you take care of.  The more they can fix at their level, the more time you have for other things.

I've seen that infograph before!!! I used it to try and sell WebDesk to my company. Our Servic Desk has a lot of growth opportunity available. They are still rooted in answering calls only... <sigh!>

Level 21

Training and a continuous improvement process are critical here as well.

Level 13

Great points for new managers...not very expensive to implement and makes a huge impact.

Level 13

Absolutely, without a proper CQI process, you're just spinning the wheels...

MVP
MVP

from time to time "Chaos Free" and Helpdesks are mutually exclusive, like after a major software upgrade to the general user populace.

Level 10
  1. Switch to centralized help desk ticketing  - Done
  2. Automate ticket assignment and routing - Done
  3. Integrate remote support with help desk - Done
  4. Resolve issues remotely without leaving your desk - Done

My organization utilizes Remedy but we are in the process of moving to Service Now.

MVP
MVP

Remedy is not a remedy...

We are currently in the process of switching to Jira Service Desk. I've lost count of the number of times I've had to remind staff to create at ticket.

MVP
MVP

Agreed - that's what we use, but like all solutions it has a lot to be desired.