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IT Service and Support
Anyone who has ever experienced an unexpected down time quickly realizes that Information Technology (IT) computer support services is a critical business function essential to keep business running smoothly. However, viewed as cost centers, IT organizations are also often the first to succumb to budgets woes that place support services at risk. Providing support is complex and expensive. The costs are mainly attributed to high personnel involvement, as they often require several exchanges between a caller and the support team from receipt of problem to resolution. Provision of these services are further complicated by those meetings being sporadic.
From a service desk support perspective, staffing resources are consumed to record the initial request from the caller, forward the request to the appropriate technical representative who may in turn contact the caller to get more information about the issue. A ten-minute conversation ensues only to take the details of the call. The support continues behind the scenes in investigating the problem, speaking with third party vendors, and playing phone tag on occasion. Multiply the time spent on a typical support request by the average number of calls each month, and an expense amount surfaces that targets itself as a candidate for cost efficiency improvement.
How to keep operational costs low and deliver a consistent level of quality support are challenges faced by IT organizations in virtually any industry. Cost cutting exercises and expansion initiatives without increasing staffing levels further places quality and timeliness of support services at risk. A company's IT support strategy must enable it to provide consistent quality support in the face of change.
To mitigate the risks that dependencies on staffing levels bring, the use of service desks is recommended to help deliver consistent and quality support. Service desks are beneficial when the average number of support requests reach levels that cannot be cost-effectively handled by staff alone. Support services entail a sequence of events that takes place over time. Service desks help to record and track progress so that additional resources are not expended in becoming familiar with the customer's request all over again. Furthermore, the nature of support often presents repeated problems where automatic forwarding of these requests to individuals with specialized knowledge will help promote better efficiencies. A web self-service option will further reduce call volumes, enable customers to self-diagnose, or access status of their support request progress.
Technology from Abacus Systems can help to implement such capabilities. Abacus Systems' Aegis Service Desk provide a service desk and tracking mechanism to link customer information, support requests, resolutions to common problems, and status of progress to help your customer support team make decisions and diagnosis that are consistent and accurate. Aegis Service Desk workflow capabilities will help detail the steps involved in the business process, enabling the customer representative to explain to the caller the next steps, or record additional information.
The Aegis Service Desk client web access facility enables customers to log on to the system using a browser such as Internet Explorer, to initiate support requests and to periodically check progress with around-the-clock convenience. This web self-service can deal effectively with common procedures that represent a large part of a support issues reported with little customer instruction. Furthermore, web front-end technology from Aegis Service Desk enables your support team to be distributed - whether to work from a company location, home, or airport - and does not require a client version to be installed on their computers.
The usage information captured by Aegis Service Desk systems can help you track responsiveness, cost of providing the support, and timeliness of response as feedback for continuous improvement initiatives.
Aegis Service Desk includes an asset management facility. The asset management component keeps all your asset data in one place and allows you to track asset allocations, components that made up an asset, asset service history and support calls for each asset.
The information captured by Aegis service desk systems can help IT departments with tracking and costing of service usage that will contribute to greater improvement in services provided. Aegis Service Desk is highly configurable - additional information such as customer attributes can easily be tailored to your specific business needs as required without development effort beyond defining the new attributes in a few simple steps. Or simply use the setups we provide to immediately see the value of your investment.