IT organizaons connue to face ght budgets and headcountrestricons that threaten to reduce the quality of service. This istaking place while IT’s role is being expanded to be the singlepoint of contact for both IT and non-IT related issues. In addion,the credibility of the IT help desk is based on key metrics that areoen aﬀected by lack of adequate resources. Metrics includeﬁrst call resoluon, call handle me, escalaon rates and averageme in the queue. These metrics are used as gauges to determinethe end-user’s or customer’s level of sasfacon and the supportteam’s success.Too oen, service desks are plagued by the lack of a centralized,accessible knowledge base, requiring support agents to escalatecalls, consult colleagues or struggle through complex key wordsearches to ﬁnd answers - ulmately producing negave supportmetrics. Today’s companies have discovered knowledge manage-ment as a soluon to improve the producvity and eﬃciency of thier service desk teams. But using the service desk soluonalone can be considered reaconary - your teams must wait forthe phone to ring or an e-mail to arrive before the end-user orcustomer can receive a resoluon to his or her problem. Thenext step in improving support - both quality and cost - is toprovide access to this support knowledge directly to the end-users or customers. This will enable them to proacvely answertheir own issues and easily escalate to a support team memberif necessary.
IntroductionSelf-Service: A Necessity
Self-service is important in many industries - from your localATM machine to online banking - people oen prefer to ﬁnda soluon or complete a task without assistance. Companiesare providing self-service opons on their corporate websites so customers can solve their own product and serviceissues. For many of the same reasons, IT service desks arediscovering Web self-service. Escalang employee expectaonshave resulted in increasing demands on the service desk. Plus,companies have more complex IT infrastructures than everbefore - complex networks, mulple integraons, a plethoraof applicaons running in global environments - creang moreopportunies for end-users to contact support. These newlevels of support drive hiring increases in the help desk,and come with escalang expense. Even if these highercosts were acceptable, they are not a long-term soluon.You can’t buy your way out of your IT support burden byincreasing your support staﬀ.As support management knows, most queries are similarin nature and oen ineﬃciently sasﬁed. Does someonereally need a live person - the most expensive method of support - to explain how to reset a network password?Of course not. Nor does an employee want to wait in aqueue for 15 minutes to get an answer. Gartner esmatespassword reset costs range from $51 (best case) to $147(worst case) per incident for the labor alone. So, theinﬂecon point is providing this type of support via achannel that is most convenient for the end-user orcustomer - 24 x 7 web self-service.
What About Knowledge?
It’s not enough to put the informaon on your intranetand ask your end-users to go ﬁnd it. You need to makethe informaon mely, accurate, easy to ﬁnd, and in theformat that most end-users want. To do this, you needto knowledge-enable your self-service portal. You mayor may not have already provided knowledge to yourteams in the service desk. Knowledge should be accessiblethrough dynamics FAQs that are updated with the mostrequested informaon, and a knowledge-base search.The knowledgebase should include a ranking system to ensurethat the most relevant informaon is easily accessible.Just imagine if there was a problem with your department’snetwork printer and everyone on your team called theIT service desk with the same issue. The support teammember would have to research and ﬁn the soluon onceand then convey it to every caller that experienced theproblem throughout the day. Is that an eﬃcient process?Use the self-service portal to post warnings and outagesto end-users. Overme this will reduce the call volumeassociated with duplicate issues. The win-win here is thatend-users are more producve and sasﬁed, you’ve reducedyour support expenses, and the knowledge-enabled self-service soluon remains a centralized point of contact. Themore a self-service tool is used the lower the transacon costto you.