Tag Archives: MSP

5 Tips to Increase Your IT Help Desk Inquiry Efficiency

IT Help Desk Inquiry Efficiency Concept

How efficient is your internal help desk?

The usefulness of your IT help desk isn’t just in the software you use or the skilled technicians solving problems. It’s also in how your employees approach their problems that need solutions. If you really want to increase both the efficiency and effectiveness of your IT help desk, part of that formula is helping your staff ask questions efficiently and learn to solve more common or basic problems on their own.

Here are five highly effective ways to increase the inquiry efficiency of your IT help desk.

1) Include Live Chat and Ticketed Inquiries

Traditional help desks function with ticketed inquiries. Employees send an email or use a form to submit an asynchronous request for assistance with any information they have. This works well for off-hours or long-solve solutions, but it can actually slow down the solve on quick or surface-level problems. Live chat has been found to be more effective at high-speed and interactive IT support than email or phone because it allows both parties to ask and answer questions quickly, share files, and run troubleshooting tests in real time.

2) Build a Detailed Tech FAQ – Keep it Updated

Interestingly, you can also increase help desk efficiency by eliminating a percentage of inquiries made. The answer is simple: A really helpful and well-build FAQ. FAQs have evolved well beyond a list of question-and-answers into ‘help portals’ that assist the user in finding the answers to common and easy to solve problems.

For example, you probably don’t need as many IT help desk calls about troubleshooting printers or employee emails as your help desk handles. A good FAQ as your first line of defense can help employees quickly solve any problem that is already known and has only a few simple steps to try.

3) Equip Chatbots to Answer FAQ Questions

Of course, not everyone is apt at searching a FAQ or help portal for the answers they need. Others don’t have time to explore the interface. For your rushed employees, the key to streamlining quick IT services and access to the FAQ is a simple chatbots. Programmable chatbots can be ‘loaded up’ with answers to common questions. And a common question is a FAQ by any other name.

What this means is that not only can you provide a FAQ answer portal, you can also equip a chatbot assistant to listen for ‘FAQ’-like questions and give the standard answer. This will speed up early troubleshooting immensely. A Chatbot can also direct employees to a real live IT help desk member for questions that go beyond the scope of the FAQ.

4) Provide Micro-Learning on Common IT Solutions

You can even teach your employees to handle increasingly complex-yet-common fixes through the use of micro-learning modules. These ‘just-in-time’ lessons can walk employees through how to do complex fixes that your company may deal with on a regular basis. The best part about micro-learning lessons is that you can ask your IT help desk team to create or map them based on the questions they really do get and solve the most often. From there, employees can summon the lesson and walk themselves through common solves without having to call IT again.

5) Have Employees Mark Category and Urgency

Finally, for problems that can’t be handled through FAQ best-practices or a quick live chat, you want a superb ticket sorting procedure. Your IT help desk can do their job best when they know what each ticket is about, how much time it will take, and how urgent the solution is before they start. Which means your team needs to know how to convey this information when they submit a problem.

When possible, ask employees to mark the category, severity, and urgency of every support ticket they request from your IT help desk. The more detail you encourage to be shared, the better. This gives your IT team a clear place to start when they pick up the ticket, live or asynchronously.

Providing an IT help desk to your employees is an important step in streamlining any modern business. But the help desk doesn’t have to be on your permanent staff. Take advantage of internal streamlining techniques and the logistic advantage of outsourced IT professionals. For more information about how to make your IT help desk more efficient, contact us today.

Why Have an Employee-Facing IT Help Desk?

Smiling customer support operator agent with hands-free device workingan employee-facing IT help desk

Staffing a internal Help Desk is difficult, why not outsource?

Traditionally, help desks are considered to be customer-facing services. Customer service help desks, exchange and return help desks, concierge service desks. But when it comes to IT, there’s a long tradition of internal employee-facing services instead. Even companies that don’t offer tech products to customers use plenty of technology on the inside. An internal IT help desk is the key to ensuring that each and every team member can handle their own workstations, devices, and work software on the fly — without interrupting the normal workflow of your business.

Employee-facing IT helpdesks have been a hallmark of the business world since the days of separate college internetworks and internal company email. IT help desks are older than the world wide web and have been necessary for as long as employees have been using computer workstations. And today, we’re here to highlight how an IT help desk can streamline any business, even those that don’t spend all day every day on the computer.

No Need for a Computer Whiz On-Site

Many businesses that do not focus primarily on technology (but still use it daily) rely on one or two IT talented staff on site. Your computer whiz is the person with enough IT background or DIY skills that they can solve most problems just by poking around the controls for a while. But not every team has one, and those that do often demand too much IT from someone who’s job is not defined as IT support.

Working with an IT help desk designed for employee-facing service is the key to no longer needing someone on your work team to have the incidental skills. Outsourcing your IT help desk can even mean saving money, as internal IT staff are highly priced in the current job market.

Supervisors Not Expected to Provide IT Fixes

When an employee’s computer, network connection, or work software stops working, the first person they usually call is their supervisor. Unfortunately, supervisors in non-tech industries are seldom equipped to solve more than simple and common technical hiccups. Not to mention, calling one’s boss for every email malfunction or connection problem is bad for business efficiency.

With an internal IT desk, your team members can call IT instead of their boss. The IT technician on the other end can quickly walk any employee through their technical problems or even take control of the computer remotely. They will fix things up quick and get the work back on track without any further interruptions to the workflow.

Staff Can Seek Solutions to Job-Unique Problems

Then there are problems that supervisors or the on-site computer whiz can’t solve because they are not common or easy. Issues that only come up in certain positions using unique devices, software, or tasks that no other role does. In these cases, technical problems can stop work all day as an employee tries to troubleshoot their unique problems or find someone who can.

However, your unique role employees are not alone with the help of an internal IT service. Technicians who specialize in business software are also great at figuring out solutions to not-so-common problems. This can get your team back on-task without losing hours to unusual technical challenges.

Network & Infrastructure Issues Solved Quickly

Finally, an internal IT help desk is key to keeping your entire office or non-office business online. Network and tech infrastructure are what all other computer-based processes are built on. Without your internal network and the workstations it connects, nothing would get done. Which is why infrastructure errors or network interruptions are so important to fix quickly.

An IT help desk can make sure your network is online from working with the local router to contacting your ISP (internet service provider) if necessary. They can also ensure that your infrastructure is up-to-date, defended, and repaired quickly should anything go wrong. This way, your computers stay online and your doors remain open no matter what happens.

Having an internal IT service for your company isn’t just something big corporations do. With MSP (managed service provider) outsourcing, you can have all the benefits of an internal IT help desk without the extensive cost of building a team of full-time technicians on staff. For more information about how an MSP can help you build the IT help desk services your company deserves, contact us today!

5 Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Managed IT Service, Not IT Repair Service

Executive Optimizing Well Performance Via Apps - Managed IT Service

Is it time to partner with a managed service provider and get out of the break fix environment?

Small businesses need all of the core infrastructure that larger businesses do. Your business needs a marketing team, salespeople, financial and legal analysts, and a help desk. But depending on how small your business is, all of those departments might be yours. Take one of those loads off your shoulders with a proactively managed IT service. Here’s why the plan is basically built for small businesses, especially compared to traditional IT help.

1. Your business is in the field, not in the office.

If your business offers a service that isn’t on-premises like a restaurant, then you and your coworkers will be spending a lot of time traveling. Instead of the traditional office setup of a desktop computer, printer, and modem, you might have a tablet and a VPN. That mobility means you can’t afford to be locked in one place as someone shows up to investigate the issue and make repairs.

Managed service providers, or MSPs, provide remote monitoring and preventative services instead. They monitor (without being invasive) potential network outages, malware and cyber threats, and signs of developing problems in your computers systems. When you’re operating off the cloud and through dozens of different apps and websites, that’s the service you need.

2. Every business is global, even when it’s local.

One of the best things about the Internet is that it opened up the international playing field for small businesses. Even if you run a business by yourself, you can do business everywhere from the United States to New Zealand. Your customers can be anywhere without the fees associated with international shipping and communication from even just a decade ago.

But that also means your business is open 24/7. A midnight website crash isn’t just a small problem anymore: it means your website was offline during some of your customers’ most active hours. A traditional IT repair service won’t send someone out until the next morning. They might even wait until the next business day. But a 24/7 software-based service is on top of the problem immediately.

3. Cyber threats consider small businesses to be low-hanging fruit.

Hackers usually aren’t aiming at a specific target. Instead, they’re looking for easy targets that get snagged in their nets and which require the least effort to break into. Small businesses, unfortunately, are prime targets because you have a lot of useful information but not a lot of resources to chase them down with. So make sure your company’s cybersecurity is too strong to make your company a tempting target.

4. Stay light with software protections instead of hardware fixes.

When you own a small business, you probably don’t want all of the heavy hardware investments that larger companies invest in. You don’t need an arsenal of backup computers, and you don’t need a dedicated floor full of internal servers. As more and more tools become virtual, that means your need for a physical IT service diminishes, too. Look for online solutions such as antimalware programs, cloud subscriptions, and VPNs instead of traditional measures.

5. Pay according to your company’s size, not according to man hours.

When you schedule a window for a traditional technician to come to troubleshoot a problem, you’re going to pay a transportation fee and by the hour. It’s going to be the same rate that every other company is paying; it might even be lower because larger companies can negotiate prices. But with an MSP, you pay based on the size of the network you want protected, and that means your monthly expenses are easier to manage.

Go to SystemsNet to learn more about managed IT services and why it’s the best move your company can make to protect itself.

What Your Customers Get From an IT Help Desk

Smiling business woman working an IT help desk

No one likes using chat wizards when they have a problem, it’s frustrating

Providing great software is no longer enough to stay competitive in the modern online business culture. Between mobile apps and the full-funnel experience, any kind of technical problem can cause you to lose leads and frustrate customers who might otherwise glide smoothly through purchase after purchase. Incorporating an IT help desk is a great strategic decision for a growing company for the simple benefit of helping your customers use the website and mobile app as intended.

While this may sound small, to customers it can matter a great deal. Let’s take a closer look at the top four things that an IT Help Desk can bring to your customer experience.

A Human Answer to Frustrating Problems

When a website or mobile app doesn’t work the way it’s supposed to, customers get frustrated quickly. It only takes one or two extra clicks, waiting for the site to respond or load, before the situation feels completely ridiculous. For most customers, the first place they go is the help center, or even the chatbot in the corner. With an IT Help Desk on the job, a real human will be ready and waiting to take their question.

Talking to a real person immediately relieves some of the tension, especially when followed up with compassionate help. Whether it’s a login issue or a payment card error, a real human on the other end of the chatbox means a lot to customers when they need assistance.

Assistance Completing Purchases

Purchase completion is one of the most frequent sources of customer technical issues. This is because so many different exchanges are required to complete a purchase. They may not be able to save their address, their card may not be accepted even though it works for them everywhere else. Frustration during the checkout phase leads to cart abandonment unless customers have somewhere fast and helpful to turn to.

An IT help desk integrated into your website is the best possible way to save sales that are stopped by technical difficulties. In fact, you can even create triggers to alert a help desk team member if someone has reloaded or attempted to edit a payment page several times in a row. Offering and providing help in this critical moment can significantly reduce your instances of abandoned carts and lost customers.

Mobile App Support

If your business has a customer mobile app, an IT Help Desk team is even more important. Many modern consumers do everything through their phones and prefer to interact with apps over websites in most cases. These users are also familiar with the ability to quickly chat with or call a help desk and will assume this is an option for your app even if you don’t yet have help desk support.

A help desk can make sure that users of your mobile app are always able to use the features they love and troubleshoot problems in real time. You can even find and fix any bugs in your mobile app quickly because users have a friendly place to send reports. Which takes us to the final point:

Having Problems Solved Immediately

Bugs in websites and mobile apps can’t always be fixed immediately, but an IT Help Desk is the key to helping customers outside the bounds of the software. Solutions can be manually implemented for customers, and then long-term fixes can be worked into future updates of the software. An IT Help Desk is essential for making sure customers get the service they need, even in cases where that doesn’t work exactly right with the website or mobile app.

So what can an IT Help Desk do for your customers? They can provide real-time solutions, human assistance in frustrating problems, save purchases from technical difficulties, and provide support to mobile users. This is something any growing brand needs to consider providing in order to remain competitive and keep customers happy. For more on how to implement a great IT Help Desk for your customers, contact us today!