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How Skagit County Leveraged ITSM to Meet Increased Support Demands During COVID-19

05/01/2020 by: Josh Kuhlman

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IT support is a crucial cog in the wheel for any business, large or small, and as change is a constant in all facets of business and economic growth, it is imperative that IT support remains elastic to meet these changes. COVID-19 threw the world a curve ball, but those armed with the right ITSM tools, like Skagit County, Washington was, were able to effectively react to and support the sudden change in IT support needs.

SunView Helps Skagit IT Through Demanding Time

The Government of Skagit County’s mission is to serve its residents by providing high-quality, efficient services to protect and strengthen its communities and environment. Like most organizations across the world, Skagit County was hit with an increased IT support load ranging from password reset requests to a 55% increase in service requests due to COVID-19. This increase in IT support demand in the wake of COVID-19 could have very well crippled Skagit County’s ability to meet their mission by limiting their ability to effectively prioritize and manage incidents and service requests; however, Skagit County was well equipped with the right technology to allow them to thrive when they, and more importantly their community, needed it most.

As increased IT support demands were received, Skagit County took to action to prioritize incidents and service requests by those needed to assist: first responders and public health, at risk individuals, operational and other non-COVID-19 related departments, and lastly, but certainly not ignored, everything else. Skagit County was able to monitor in real-time the workflow of all incidents and requests as well as the current workload of their IT resources. Having this real-time look into workflow and workload statuses allowed them to maximize organizational efficiency and ensure that high priority items had proper resource allocation to effectively resolve items as quickly as possible.

If an already increased IT support demand during COVID-19 was not enough, Skagit County was then hit with a phone system outage that added onto to the already increased demand their support team was facing. Thankfully, Skagit County had the ITSM tools in place to aid in swiftly identifying the larger issue, send out an outage communication, and focus on solving the underlying problem.

In performing to their mission to strengthen their community during this time of COVID-19, Skagit County launched a new blog website to keep their community informed daily with updates on health, resources, connections, and overall community information. They were able to do so, in part, with the aid of their ITSM tools.

Skagit County and ChangeGear

Skagit County leveraged SunView Software’s ChangeGear as their ITSM tool that allowed them to have full visibility over the demands of their support team while improving decision-making and reaction time. To start, ChangeGear allows incident tickets to be opened in multiple ways. One of which is directly from email submission, which just happens to be how Skagit Country receives most of their IT requests. This improves efficiency by saving the time of manual user entry. Skagit County was then able to leverage a real-time dashboard allowing IT staff and management to quickly prioritize items and identify any tickets at risk of missing an SLA. This provided the ability to efficiently assign additional resources to help resolve tickets as needed. This greatly helped Skagit County in resolving high priority tickets to ensure that first responders can do their job without interruption during this time of global pandemic.

At the initial onset of COVID-19 when Skagit County was shifting to a work-from-home way of life, their support team was suddenly inundated with laptop requests. Not only were they able to leverage ChangeGear to automate the bulk entry of 60-100 laptops, but they were then provided with real-time tracking from order status through setup. This provided Skagit County with great oversight in tracking their organizational assets during a time when employee resources are remote.

ChangeGear enabled Skagit County to have needed visibility into incidents and service requests to improve support response times and business communication during COVID-19. The flexibility and customization of ChangeGear meant the Skagit County team could keep things moving whether procurement of hardware, the prioritization of requests based on current community needs, or knowing what relevant information to keep the community informed of.

An event like COVID-19 has unexpectedly stressed many business continuity plans, and unfortunately for some, it has highlighted the need to implement one. An effective ITSM solution can help organizations become more flexible and adaptable during unprecedented times.

| customer success / featured

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