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Advanced Service Desks Provide Vital KPIs for Managers

11/12/2013 by: The SunView Team

Key Performance Indicators, KPIs, Service Desk

Transparency is a vital component of operational success in many industries. Sometimes, like in the public sector, an organization needs to be transparent to outside auditors. However, internal visibility is often critical as well, especially as businesses with tight budgets try to maximize operational efficiency. It is nearly impossible to optimize operations without clear insight into how work is accomplished, and transparency provides the visibility necessary in this area.

In the IT segment, many businesses are facing a myriad new challenges as emerging technologies unite to form a wide array of paradigm changes that technology leaders must respond to. As such, budget space is extremely tight and operational waste is too expensive to let go without being addressed. This is where having transparency in technology departments really pays dividends, and advanced IT service desk solutions can give managers the insight they need to evaluate operations successfully with advanced Key Performance Indicators or KPIs.

Using the service desk to create transparency
A sophisticated service desk featuring incident and change management will usually also include automation functionality. These automation tools will handle some processes for employees, while also creating an audit trail because the process followed by the automation platform is scripted. This creates visibility in and of itself, but is really only a first step toward transparency.

Service desk solutions will also usually include an advanced ticketing architecture that not only takes advantage of automation, but also features project management tools. These capabilities stand out from a transparency perspective. With a homegrown or simplistic help desk, a manager must manually go through emails or improvised ticketing systems to track which tasks have been completed, how they were handled, how long it took to do them and which incidents are still pending. With a more robust ticketing system, a manager only needs to open up a central status report tracking the KPIs to identify the state of different tickets and identify performance statistics.

Another advantage presented by an advanced service desk is the ability to gather statistics about operations. Besides being able to see how tickets are handled, IT leaders can use the service desk to track different areas of operations and report on how things are going. For example, identifying KPIs like the average response time to incidents, the number of incidents handled on a daily basis, the primary solutions leading to incidents and problems, how many tickets are handled by specific workers and which parts of the service desk are busiest is feasible with a service desk.

Considering the full value of service desk metrics
These advanced service desk metrics can make it much easier for managers to determine the root cause of operational problems and solve them before they lead to financial damages. Similarly, the data can also be leveraged to identify peak performers, recognize areas where more training is necessary and otherwise advance the service desk toward more efficient and intelligent operational schemes.

However, this data can also be used for strategic purposes, such as understanding whether the help desk will be able to handle a new technological deployment. This knowledge will help IT leaders identify if a new application release should be accompanied by help desk expansion, and could lead to a smoother release process as enough workers will be available to deal with incidents that naturally arise when a new solution is deployed.

Similarly, strategic data can help IT leaders identify when it is time to add new modules to the service desk, when the scale of the solution needs to be increased and how to fine tune the solution to improve operational efficiency. Metric data is vital to understanding operations and how to improve them, and an advanced service desk can provide the transparency needed to gather such information effectively.

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