Managing people is just as important as managing technology on the IT service desk. A good service desk worker who understands the nuances of your company's processes and how to handle different types of service requests is an invaluable asset. However, keeping such a worker happy and content to stay with the organization depends on managing the people on your service desk effectively. This means having enough staff to prevent people from getting burnt out, and dealing with tedious issues quickly so employees can focus on more engaging tasks.
Business intelligence solutions can give service desk managers the information they need to support staff more effectively. A few particularly valuable features in this area include:
1. Anticipating demand for new staff
Demand peaks and valleys are common on the service desk, and you don't want to have such an excess of staff that people are sitting around with nothing to do during slow days. At the same time, you also need to be able to anticipate when an increased number of incidents is not a peak, but instead a sign that you need more people. More importantly, you must identify when those increases are going to happen and make hiring decisions early enough to have a new worker ready to step in.
Having staff members get burnt out because they are overworked can quickly lead to employee retention problems and wasted resources trying to hire new people on an ongoing basis. Using BI tools to anticipate hiring needs can prevent overwork from becoming a problem and help you avoid having to make rushed hires when sudden problems emerge.
2. Balance schedule loads
The service desk will have different demands at different times. Furthermore, organizations with service desks supporting distinct branches may face unique requirements. Understanding these nuances and deploying staff members accordingly can keep everybody fresh, focused and free from having to deal with the same work environment all the time. BI solutions provide the analytics information needed to properly understand how the service desk functions in various times and locations, making it easier to balance employee schedules for optimal efficiency.
3. Improve training/education
BI solutions can give you the data you need to track what skills your service desk workers have and help you identify when the best times to train them for the future is. In particular, BI systems help you predict demand at any time, allowing you to select the best situations to train employees without having them fall behind in other areas.
BI tools are not always considered mission critical in the service desk, but they can play an integral role in improving IT service management plans.