How to Optimise the Daily Activities of IT Support Agents

Companies all across the globe are continuously increasing the number of different technologies that exist within their workplace, differing in both variety and complexity. These technologies include ‘bring your own devices’ (BYOD) such as mobile phones and different employee laptops or desktop computers, all presenting potential errors to be solved by the IT support agents within the service desk. With so many problems that vary in frequency and complexity, how can companies underpin their support capabilities?

Same Question – Same Answer

Many simple inbound tickets that are presented to IT support agents more often than not are easily solved with simple answers. However, with so many of these daily inbound tickets, agents really have their work cut out to answer questions quickly and efficiently whilst also dealing with uncommon and complex support tickets.

The most effective solution to overcome the vast volume of routine issues, is to enable users to self-serve their own queries via access to an interactive IT support Knowledge Management system or a dynamic set of FAQs.

Deflect Routine Tickets

Allowing employees access to a repository that is both interactive and accurate, is a sure fire way to reduce inbound ticket volumes by up to 50% whilst vastly improving the speed at which issues are solved. 

This not only benefits agents but also employees as people are more and more in preference of self-serving in today’s society, increasing both productivity and satisfaction for company employees.

 

Streamline Knowledge

A common problem faced by IT support agents is that they know what information they are looking for but not where it is located or in which document it is to be found. This leads to a great deal of wasted time locating documents from multiple repositories and trawling through to find their answer.

When queries cannot be answered through self-service, tickets are inevitably going to be received by IT support agents. Basic technical information and common knowledge can be provided by agents quickly, but when answers require higher consideration and technical knowledge documents must be scoured.

Up to 80% of an organisation’s knowledge is deemed to be tacit knowledge, however only 15-20% of this knowledge is captured and so transferred to others. Effective service desk Knowledge Management ensures that the more technically astute 2nd or 3rd line support agents, are able to easily transfer their invaluable tacit knowledge built up from years of training and experience. Making this tacit knowledge easily searchable by front-line support agents is the most powerful way to ensure that this high-grade information is both captured and shared with those who can also learn and benefit from it.

By streamlining content and documentation through an effective and easily searchable IT support Knowledge Management system, agents are able to retrieve information at the click of a button being taken directly to both the relevant document and document section.

Knowledge Maintenance

IT support Knowledge Management is an answer to many service desk issues, however outdated and badly maintained knowledge is futile when answering queries relating to new information and can lead to confusion amongst agents and more importantly circulation of inaccurate knowledge.

Appointing administrators or knowledge managers wins half of the battle, but having a system that can be easily maintained by these personnel can be the gruelling other half.

Having the ability to provide feedback of potentially outdated articles to knowledge managers and furthermore having the ability to easily make editions to these articles, can play a key role in optimising your organisation’s knowledge sharing culture

Allowing the creation of new content or knowledge within an IT support Knowledge Management system is fundamental to maintain productivity of both workers and agents, therefore providing a system in which this can be effectively and effortlessly achieved is just as important.

Content contribution that is undertaken on a continual basis, ensures that information is both current and accurate, reducing escalations and increasing the rate at which responses are provided.

Effective methods of doing this include, notifying groups or individuals of updates within the knowledgebase and making previously escalated and answered queries readily available through Natural Language Searching.

Key Reports for Prioritisation

In order to effectively prioritise the workload of an IT support agent, they first need to know areas of highest importance and how frequently certain issues occur. For effective IT service desk Knowledge Management, agents require access to reports such as document usage counts (and what individuals are using them), knowledge contribution, knowledge gaps and the time taken for an issue to be resolved.

By having access to these reports, service desk managers have the ability to clearly define the future goals and areas of greatest interest for agents as well as having the resources to accurately provide relevant topics to be included within self-service options such as FAQ lists.

Having a clear structure in place for future goals based upon key metrics and by deflecting up to 50% of tickets through the use of knowledge articles, agents and service desk managers have all the appropriate tools to ensure that their service desk excels to increase productivity and innovation by up to 25%.

Successful service desk Knowledge Management adoption and utilisation will go a long way in reducing annual support expenditure levels by up to 20% and optimising the satisfaction of any organisation’s most prized asset, their workers.

What’s more each agent’s received and read status is easily viewable through the production of full audit trails, allowing call centre managers to easily monitor who has seen these vital updates ensuring that everyone is kept in the loop.

Agents are also (if given the authorisation to do so) able to provide feedback on content if they deem it to be outdated, or whether it requires some tweaks to help preserve 100% accuracy of circulating knowledge.