A logical IT Help Desk structure is important to ensure your company’s users know what support is available and how to contact IT Help Desk support. The ideal state is what we call a Single Point of Contact (SPOC) IT Help Desk structure. The SPOC IT Help Desk provides help and support for any issue verses just logging a call and escalating it. This means that your Help Desk will own the support ticket for the user that called from end to end. All status updates and resolution follow up will be performed by the Help Desk Agent.
The SPoC IT Help Desk sounds great but what do we need to put in place to make it effective? Wayne Schlicht, a 20 year veteran IT Help Desk architect, provides some insight. Wayne states, “to make a SPoC Help Desk effective we need the following”;
1. A single number that is readily available for the users to call for questions and support. This is important. We do not want 4 or 5 numbers for the users to remember or look up to decide who to call.
2. A Knowledge Base with every type of issue identified and a solution or an escalation point available. This will ensure a uniform service of consistent quality. If the user calls, our IT Help Desk needs to be able to solve it or know where to send the ticket.
3. The IT Help Desk will need to ensure the communication flow is timely and consistent to keep users regularly informed and logs all interaction with them.
4. Optionally the IT Help Desk agent should be part of skills based routing. Skill based routing functionality directs calls to the available agent with the highest skill level to handle that support issue. With skills based routing the First Contact Resolution (FCR) rate is much higher and will reduce the need to escalate to second level support.
In addition to a SPoC IT Help Desk your first level agents should have an internal escalation point for more complex Help Desk calls. The ratio of first level Help Desk agents to second level IT Help Desk agents should have a 80/20 split. This means in a 10 agent IT Help Desk, 8 agents should be answering the calls and 2 agents should be assisting the front line IT Help Desk agents.