Stupid User Tricks: 8 Reasons You Gotta Love IT

Sometimes IT support means a whole lot more than troubleshooting hardware and software.

Susan Fogarty

February 10, 2016

9 Slides

Let's face it, when it comes to technology there are two types of people: those who get it, and those who don't. No one is more aware of this dichotomy than you, the IT professionals who deal with daily requests that, eight or nine times out of 10, can be solved with a pinch of common sense. (Cough, have you tried turning it off and on again?)

In honor of Valentine's Day, we want to acknowledge the myriad ways IT staffers support their users' help desk requests. We asked our thwack community to share their best and funniest help desk stories. Their tales provide good reasons for us to love our IT professionals and be ever so grateful for all they do.

And remember, to make your own help desk more productive:

  • Benchmark and provide feedback – Understanding your environment's key performance indicators is imperative, not only to provide insight into trends and issues, but to allow you to provide feedback to your staff.

  • Document every interaction – Keep historical records of incidents for cases, users and assets to spot trends and solve future problems.

  • Automate as much as you can – Working on and closing help desk tickets can be a repetitive process. To help, implement automation at every stage of ticket lifecycle -- from ticket creation and assignment to escalation and closure.

  • Clearly define and communicate your help desk process and SLAs – Have a clearly defined process that not only sets user expectations, but also gives your staff a clear framework that they can leverage.

  • Enable users to help themselves – Create an easily searchable knowledgebase that will allow users to find quick resolutions to the problems they frequently encounter. This strategy will help to reduce the number of help desk tickets that come in and will allow you to focus on more challenging problems.

  • Check your pulse – Survey your users for overall satisfaction after their help desk interactions to see what you are doing right and what can be improved.

  • Transparency is key – Give users access to their ticket status and openly communicate what the next steps are and when they will be happening. This prevents unnecessary frustrations and contact.

(Image: youngID/iStockphoto)

About the Author(s)

Susan Fogarty

Director of ContentSusan Fogarty is the Director of Content for Interop and UBM’s media properties InformationWeek and Network Computing. She’s an industry veteran who knows the IT audience very well, having served in content development for the event for four years and media for IT professionals for more than 20 years. Prior to joining UBM in 2012, she held an Editor position with Dell and worked at TechTarget, where she served as an Editorial Director, for 11 years.

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