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Help Desk Best Practices

Mike Matchett

Recently I had the great pleasure to interview Logically’s chief expert in all things managed IT services, their CTO Jeremy Kurth. One of the surprising things that jumped out for me was the glaring problems IT organizations are having with help desk services.

The number one thing that customers want in their help desk is a fast response rapid problem resolution. Being able to get the right person on the phone the first the time is imperative for any help desk team. When an end user calls into the help desk, their goal is to speak to a real person and get their issue resolved as quickly as possible. Having a team of help desk technicians that can quickly track down all the changes to the environment, find a root cause of the issue, and either resolve themselves or escalate the issue to an engineer is crucial. The help desk can be a tall order for small to midsize businesses (SMBs) that don’t have the internal resources or technical expertise to handle these issues.

Why is the help desk such a challenge and why is it so hard to identify, troubleshoot and fix IT problems? To put it simply, IT is inherently complex. Over the years, IT has moved from mainframe to minicomputer to client-server to the internet, and now to the cloud. Today’s modern workforce means that end users are often remote and mobile, using a variety of corporate and personal devices including smartphones laptops and tablets. Along with this new consumerization of IT comes a high set of expectations about the user experience. Today’s users expect their business apps to be as easy and intuitive to use as their smartphone personal apps.  Add to this the fact that the internet and the cloud have unleashed unprecedented and you have the perfect storm for complexity. 

And then there is the challenge of cyber security.  The reality is that cyber attacks have become more frequent, and unfortunately, many small to midsize businesses do not have the resources necessary to track security trends, respond to security incidents and update controls. Cyber threats are broad-ranging and include breaches, espionage, theft of IP, denial of service attacks and destructive malware.

Because of these IT complexities and challenges, one of the most popular services that small and midsize organizations seek from a Managed IT Services Provider (MSP) is a quality help desk. Good MSPs have dedicated help desk resources and IT management tools that allow them to be very responsive to end users.  They have a deep bench of experts that are skilled and certified across core networking technologies and core office applications, as well as hard to find cloud and security experts. 

Good MSP’s can leverage subject matter experts across their many clients. In fact, one thing to think about when looking for an MSP is understanding their technical depth, the technical certifications their team holds, as well as the vendor partnering relationships. 

With decades of experience managing hundreds of IT environments, Jeremy has a unique perspective on help desk services.  During our conversation Jeremy explained how he and the Logically team have spent years developing and refining their automation, help desk and care team approach – a strategy that assigns a consistent team of technicians and engineers to each client to streamline the escalation of issues to provide the best possible service to our customers.  Good automation and IT management systems enables Logically to accommodate unique client requirements and ensure the help desk and care team have up to date visibility and insight into every customer’s unique environment.  It is Logically’s goal to deliver the best of all worlds – knowledgeable customer care, customized service delivery and fast issue resolution.

In fact, Jeremy says that it’s “all about the relationships and making sure that we are not only doing our jobs, but that we are also being held accountable for it, listening to our clients and making sure we are aligning as best as possible to provide that service.”  

From an end user’s perspective, help desk services may be the important service an MSP provides. Getting the right person on the phone the first time and being able to resolve the issue as soon as possible is the goal for any help desk team. Feel free to check out the full interview with Jeremy to learn how to optimize your help desk team and provide the best support for your customers.