It’s 8.30 in the morning
Andrea is a Tier-I IT support staff who has a confident smile in her face always. On a bright Monday morning, Andrea cheerfully walks into the office and finds a sticky note stuck to the front of her cabin. It reads “My laptop crashed and I need help ASAP”. Seeing the note is a déjà vu moment for Andrea, having received many such request notes in the past from Mr./Ms.Anonymous with no clue left.
A few seconds later, Dave, a sales rep, comes rushing to her cabin “Hey Andrea, Good morning. Hope you read my note? Can you give me a new laptop immediately? Mine crashed in the middle of a meeting.” Andrea smiles and quickly helps Dave, who had left the anonymous request note. However, this request is not tracked or accounted anywhere. Andrea is that IT girl who always offers “selfless service”.
After handing Dave a temporary laptop, with a promise to look at his crashed laptop tomorrow, Andrea starts her day with a cup of coffee and looks forward to completing many of her pending tasks. She recollects Friday’s pending tasks and quickly plans for the day. Andrea then reboots the support systems and applications and gets them up and running.
It’s 10 am now
Time to start working on queued tickets. She checks her mailbox and has an unpleasant surprise! A lot of new tickets have been wrongly assigned to her.
Some of them include:
- Account locked error
- My computer is too slow
- Password reset request
- How to restart my ERP application
- Finance reimbursements
- Blue screen error
Andrea reads the mails again calmly and draws a virtual mind map to organize to-do list for the day. Meanwhile, her colleague from IT, James comes to her desk asking, “Hey Andrea, what’s the status of the maintenance ticket INC 1223?”. Andrea recollects the ticket details with the help of her powerful memory and replies, “It’s resolved., Maintenance completed successfully!” Andrea is a true savior and the most humble IT girl, who goes above and beyond to help anyone.
Andrea then logs into the IT service desk portal to get started and she starts re-assigning all the wrongly assigned tickets to the right agents. There are ten tickets due for today and there is an escalation from CIO for a high priority ticket regarding a maintenance schedule. Andrea sends first response to all these tickets and updates statuses of existing tickets. She waits for her Manager to reach office to discuss about the escalation and to get some hands on advice on how to respond to the escalation.
The clock ticks 2 pm
Andrea realizes that it’s already time for lunch and feels panicked thinking about the amount of work still left for the day. There comes a pop up for a meeting that is scheduled with Alex from the finance team on helping him to set up his printer . Andrea grabs her food at her desk and spends most of her time in remote assistance with her colleagues, fixing different issues. By the time she finishes, it’s already 5 pm. Andrea then starts the planned email migration activity and new employee onboarding request that includes workstation allocation, account creation, phone extension etc.
It’s already 6pm
Andrea suddenly remembers a friend’s birthday party that she has to attend. She is in the middle of an OS upgrade and waits patiently for it to complete before rushing back home to get ready for the birthday party.
Are we missing the bigger picture??
Omg! Sounds too hectic and stressful, doesn’t it? It definitely does! Andrea arrives early to office and works odd hours too. She is an energetic IT girl and a fast learner. But, what are we missing here? She works in silo and there is no clear goal set for her to work towards. The problem is not with Andrea but the process followed which is inefficient and not scalable.
The onus lies on the management to communicate the business vision and IT Manager is responsible to assign clear roles and responsibilities to the team members. Defining goals and reviewing current processes play a significant role in achieving what is expected out of an IT agent. IT is the backbone of any organization and therefore, IT team building is an important exercise for effective resource utilization and service delivery.
Andrea’s day will look much better by rethinking the way IT works in her organization and implementing some of the proven best practices. IT can be a thankless job and therefore, it is important to keep them motivated. Technology is not sufficient enough to improve service management but it largely depends on the way of communication, understanding people and interaction that happens among stakeholders. This would solve the bigger problem of information silos, culture mismatch and service inefficiency.
Rethink your IT and the way IT agents work.
Stay tuned to discuss more on how to improve Andrea’s workday and some hands-on productivity tips.