When contacting your company’s IT help desk for a failure, you often feel you are bothering the operator or interrupting something that is far more important than your issue. Help desk answers are laconic or ill-mannered. Does this sound like a familiar experience to you?

Although like support is a primary service in any IT department, this function is often neglected, and this might happen for two simple, but deeply linked reasons: the help desk is the training ground for young or less skilled IT professionals, and most users don’t trust it or misuse the service by accessing it for any trifle they stumble upon.

However, increasingly digitalised companies rely on IT assets and services to run their processes and grow their business, so every time a problem hits an application, a database, a system component, or a resource, there might be severe consequences for user productivity and overall business continuity. Improving the IT Help Desk is thus a valuable way to contribute to corporate success – while saving much money.

Far-sighted IT leaders have understood this, and are pushing their staff to become service brokers and offer what matters to business teams, that is a reliable, continued support to critical processes and workflows, and secured data availability.

How can CIOs get the most from their help desks? First, remember it is a customer-facing function, so user satisfaction should always come first, be accurately measured and scrutinised. If internal users are to be treated with the same level of respect and courtesy as external, paying customers, it is vital to hire operators who combine robust technical competences with some soft skills as ease of communication and empathy. Recruitment is therefore essential to design an appreciable service, and help desk staff should be provided with a career path to reward their ability and commitment.

Of course, people of goodwill are not enough. Performing solutions and tools to closely monitor IT operations and prevent potential issues before they even arise are fundamental for business effectiveness. Take our Kriu 4ITO; for example, it allows companies to collect, correlate, and enrich IT services data, displaying key information and recommended actions to deal with any detected issue. This gives the IT staff the opportunity to tackle any potential disruption, minimizing its impact on teams, workflows and business activities.

Moreover, a smart way to leverage the help desk expertise is to establish many links between operators and other IT functions such as database administration, system and application development. Capitalising data about frequent issues, unfriendly features or troublesome applications might direct efforts in replacing or upgrading IT resources, also suggesting relevant insights for future innovation.

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