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What is an IT service desk?

What is an IT service desk?

The service desk practice's goal is to record demand for service requests and incident resolution. Additionally, it needs to serve as the service provider's main point of contact with all of its customers.

James Mason profile image
by James Mason

Users can report problems, questions, and requests to service desks, where they will be noticed, categorised and dealt with. The management and delivery of this practice may be handled by a team of individuals working shifts, a distributed group of people connecting online, or automated technologies and bots. No matter the model, the function and value remain the same. The emphasis of the service desk is to provide help for "people and business" rather than just technical concerns as a result of growing automation and the progressive elimination of technical debt.

The service desk has developed into an essential component of every service operation as it is increasingly used to organise, clarify, and manage diverse issues rather than only remedy malfunctioning technology. No matter how effective the service desk and its staff are, there will always be situations that require escalation and supporting assistance from other teams.

To present and provide a "joined up" approach to users and customers, support and development teams must cooperate closely with the service desk. The service desk may not need to be highly technical, although some are. However, even if the service desk is fairly simple, it still plays a vital role in the delivery of services and must be actively supported by its peer groups. It is also essential to understand that the service desk has a major influence on user experience and how the service provider is perceived by the users.

An experienced service desk should have practical awareness of the users, business processes, and the larger business context. Service desks contribute value by comprehending and responding to the business context of an activity, such as incident logging, in addition to the transactional acts themselves.

The service desk should be the empathetic and informed link between the service provider and its users.

The service desk should act as a knowledgeable and sympathetic intermediary between the service provider and its customers.

Service desks are shifting to give more self-service logging and resolution directly via web portals and mobile applications as a result of greater automation, AI, robotic process automation (RPA), and chatbots. Reduced phone contact, less low-level work, and a greater ability to concentrate on providing excellent CX when personal contact is required are the effects on service desks.

Service desks offer several access points. These consist of:

Using specialised technology during phone calls, such as interactive voice response (IVR), conference calls, voice recognition, and others
Service portals and mobile applications, supported by service and request catalogues, and knowledge bases
Chatting using chatbots and live chat
Email is used for updating and logging as well as for confirmations and follow-up surveys. Emerging solutions based on AI and machine learning are starting to solve the challenge of processing unstructured emails.
In some industries, such as higher education, where there are significant peaks of activity that require physical presence, walk-in service desks are becoming more common.
Users can send assistance requests via text and social media, which are useful for alerts in the event of big incidents and for getting in touch with particular stakeholder groups.
Public and corporate social media platforms, as well as message boards, can be used to get in touch with the service provider and get peer help. Some service desks only offer service cover within a specific support time, for instance, from Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. To ensure continuous support levels, staff are therefore asked to work in shift patterns.

In certain instances, the service desk is a real team with members based in one place. Supporting technologies needed for a centralised service desk include intelligent telephone systems with computer-telephony integration, IVR, and automatic call distribution.

  • Workflow systems for routing and escalation, as well as resource planning and management systems.

  • A call recording and quality control knowledge base.

  • Tools for remote access.

  • Tools for a dashboard and monitoring.

  • Systems for configuration management.

Service desk analysts

Training and proficiency in a variety of wide technical and business areas are required for service desk workers. They must particularly exhibit outstanding customer service abilities like empathy, incident analysis and prioritising efficient communication, and emotional intelligence. The core competency is the capacity to thoroughly comprehend and diagnose a specific issue in terms of business priority and to take the necessary steps to have it resolved to utilise the skills, knowledge, people, and processes that are at hand.

Improve to promote ongoing alignment, monitoring, and value creation, service desk actions are regularly assessed. The service desk gathers customer feedback to promote ongoing improvement.
Engage For tactical and operational user contact, the service desk serves as the primary conduit.
Design and transition Users can be informed about new and modified services via the service desk. Staff at the service desk take involved in early life support, testing, and release planning.
Service desk staff members may help with the acquisition of service elements needed to complete service requests and handle problems.
The centre for managing problems and service requests is to deliver and support the service desk.
James Mason profile image
by James Mason

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