As humans, it is common to find two tendencies when we work:
- We exaggerate very quickly. When mass psychology is involved, we tend to overreact.
- We are very adaptive. Even in challenging situations, we innovate and find workarounds.
Remote working began as a significant challenge. Many teams saw falling productivity and morale. Some people even declared it the end of ‘fixed working hours’ as we know it. As all of us started getting used to the concept, we started seeing solutions to alleviate, if not entirely eradicate the problems.
ITSM has risen as the go-to solution for many organizations since COVID-19 onset has meant that even the most mission-critical teams have to work from a distance. Organizations and teams everywhere are now adapting recognized ITSM modules like service desk, asset management, knowledge management, and service catalog to provide various services to the remote workforce.
Here are some ITSM use cases for your team to support remote workforce:
1. Seamless and Rapid Service Delivery
For most organizations, their IT support teams are usually always understaffed. The issues with their IT infrastructure keep going up, but there aren’t ever enough people in their IT team. COVID-19 has made this situation worse. There is no surprise that on average a service request takes as much as 10 hours to elicit a response.
Here are a few ways through which you can speed up your IT service delivery during these times:
- Use a Centralized Ticketing System: A centralized system that automatically analyses and assigns tickets to technicians can increase IT technician productivity by a considerable amount. The centralized system would allow the IT team to look at all the tickets in one place along with their priority status. This way, they can respond to the most critical issues, take care of the clogged tickets, and perform a pattern analysis on the types of tickets being raised. This allows for proactive service management to stop IT issues before they even occur.
- Integrate SLAs: With employees working from home, tickets are bound to be raised for even the slightest issues. Whether the tickets being raised are internal or external, the IT strategy should be robust enough to have automated SLA updates for the tickets. This would enable technicians to resolve tickets rapidly based on urgency, get notified of SLA breach, and measure SLA performance using a compliance monitor.
- Use Automated Network Tickets and Knowledge Base: For IT support teams that have just been put together as a response to remote working will have a tough time understanding each node of the company’s IT infrastructure. Using a Network Management System (NMS) integrated with an ITSM solution can help identify various network issues, automatically assign these issues to technicians, and track the status of their resolutions.
2. Robust Asset Inventory Management
Every organization makes use of different IT and non-IT assets like software, hardware, and contracts. While these assets solve a ton of productivity and connectivity problems, managing them is no simple task. In an ideal situation, the teams are barely able to physically maintain the usage data and inventory of each asset. But you can imagine how difficult it can get to track and monitor each asset of a company while people are working remotely.
It is the right time to understand the significance of investing in an IT Asset Management (ITAM) solution. The right ITAM solution can help companies continue with their business, even as teams grow physically apart.
A robust asset management tool is crucial for organizations planning to grow, even in the face of COVID-19. Here are some use cases you can configure around:
- Agent Enabled Discovery Support: An agent is installed on each remote employee’s machine. These agents track assets, provide extensive data recovery, and enable monitoring for proactive measures.
- Software License Management: Even with teams working from home, technology licenses can be tracked to mitigate legal liabilities and extract maximum value from each software license. This would also help ensure that no software is being underused, overused, or used beyond its licensing date.
- Relationship Support for Network Health: Understanding the contextual interdependence between each asset can help determine the potential impact of an incident or a problem on the network. Problems pertinent to one category of assets might carry over to others. This can be used to proactively reduce problems in the network.
- QR Codes and Barcodes for Asset Tracking: Giving any asset a scanned value can make the asset management process very efficient. QR Codes and Barcodes can help manage all forms of an asset – IT, Hardware, Software, and even Non-IT. Barcodes can also help in having contextual information about the business unit, team, group, or department. This can be of great help in managing asset life cycles while remote working.
You can even take a step further and automate notification systems to get the workflow permits from responsive assets. IT assets that are not compatible with an agent-based support system can be managed using a rule-based approach and one-time configuration options. This way, even without active monitoring, major issues can be resolved in the system using its contextual network-relative information.
3. Remote Support
Teams are well aware of the impact remote working has caused business operations and how IT support can help them. That said, they are often unable to explain and map out possible issues. If providing critical support by being in the same workspace used to be difficult, imagine how difficult it must have become to provide support remotely.
A remote desktop would empower technicians to fix issues remotely, eliminating the need for physical intervention. Instantaneous remote support would help the support team to save time and make work more productive, which in turn results in greater end-user satisfaction. Furthermore, the capacity to record the activities carried out through an automated session recording could help for future reference.
4. Self-Service with Knowledge at your Fingertips
Every time an issue or a problem is resolved, it should be documented. Once all this documentation is put together, it forms the company’s Knowledge Base.
Since the majority of employees are working from home, they might not easily be able to get the information they need to perform their regular activities. Deploying limited IT service man-hours for known and minor issues would be inefficient. Instead, Knowledge Management can be capitalized to help users take care of the smaller queries by themselves thus promoting self-service.
Each issue and problem should be available in the form of an accessible and searchable article, a blog, or FAQ in the company’s Knowledge Base. The employees can easily use this repository to help themselves before raising a ticket with the IT Team. At the same time, the IT Teams can use the Knowledge Base to bring recruits up to speed.
5. Enterprise Service Management with Service Catalog
Employees, often referred to as the internal customer in a company, require a certain set of services from different business teams that help them execute their responsibilities. While these employees work from home, not only IT but all business teams like HR, admin are flooded with lots of emails and requests which are difficult to maintain and to communicate.
In this scenario, companies should build a comprehensive service catalog that is the central repository of services and liabilities the company has towards its employees. Just like how they make a catalog for external customers, the company should build a service catalog for internal employees that would present different services from different departments to enable Enterprise Service Management, e.g.:
- IT-related services like Hardware Acquisition, Requesting for any software license, or even Troubleshooting basic issues like password reset.
- HR-related services like Leave Approval, Complaint Filing
- Admin related services like Reimbursement
All the services mentioned above could be streamlined through Workflows, Approval Workflows, Auto Assignment of request tickets among the teams as per their workload.
Moreover, these services should be made available through a Mobile Application supporting the ITSM solution so that users can communicate with the technicians over the Mobile App, and the service teams can in-turn resolve requests through the app, thereby reducing their workload.
This pandemic is giving most businesses a tremendous opportunity to hit refresh and rethink their ITSM Strategy. Instead of a categorical overhead, ITSM can help companies become more efficient by providing seamless service delivery, managing assets, reducing the lead time in ticket resolution, promoting ticket avoidance with knowledge management, and giving a clear idea about the enterprise services for the internal customers.
Motadata services can help you get all these functionalities and much more integrated into a single unified platform that helps you manage, track, and improve your service delivery even while working remotely.