Mastering your IT team’s service desk demand feels like playing a painfully long and complex game of chess — the end-game must always be at the forefront of your mind, you need to carefully evaluate the impact of every change, and one wrong move can bump you right back to where you started.
With the right mix of intelligence and foresight, your service desk manager can develop a game plan to adeptly maneuver challenges as they arise. Read on to learn five ways managers can best service demand, then check out Numerify’s eBook on how to conquer IT service complexities with analytics.
1. Pinpoint Influxes
Service volume variability is inevitable — but you can control your service desk’s reaction to influxes in ticket quantity. Historical data offer a complete snapshot of ticket volume, enabling you to search for dips, spikes, and other notable variations in volume. Service analytics let you dig even deeper into that data to identify larger patterns such as seasonal changes or peak volume periods. You can then utilize this intelligence to predict future influxes as well as institute a plan for addressing such swells in service demand.
2. Take Stock of Incident Trends
Beyond detecting recurring spikes in historical volume, your service desk manager needs the ability to see incident trends on a weekly and monthly basis. Service desks with robust data systems can easily extract this information from their repositories and spot trends in the type, origin, and time of incidents. If your organization relies on lighter service processes, a scarcity of incident data can hinder your team’s analysis of service volume. A tool like text analytics provides insight into incident descriptors and enables your team to prioritize those with reappearing keywords.
3. Uncover Incidents Caused by Change
In organizations that introduce hundreds of changes each month, those changes frequently end up affecting the number of incidents logged at the service desk. Yet your service desk manager may lack the means to definitively correlate changes with service incidents, especially without a mature CMDB.
Analytics allow you to drill into users, locations, assignment groups, and business services/applications to infer change-to-incident relationships. The robust visibility gained from service analytics gives your team the upper hand in pinpointing the best approach to quickly neutralize spikes in change-based incidents.
4. Conduct Root Cause Analysis
Changes represent a portion of the underlying problems driving up your service volume, but by no means are they the only unidentifiable issues lurking under the surface. Root cause analysis lets your service manager drill into specific service events and discover hidden drivers of service disruption. Investigate whether the issue behind a rise in service demand stems from a business service or configuration item (CI), an issue with staffing or workloads, or another area of IT operations. With root cause analysis, you can transform your service desk operations from reactive to proactive — instantly honing in on a spike in demand and linking it back to the original event or complication.
5. Reduce the Burden on Your Service Team
Equally important to improving existing processes is considering how you might help offload some of the burden from your agents. Implementing a self-service portal can help deflect as much as 50 percent of incidents. In addition to reducing agent workloads, self-service can help cut costs as well. HDI estimates the cost of resolution for self-service to be between $1 and $5, compared to the cost for agent-assisted support between $22 and $85 (depending on the support level).
Did you enjoy this adaptation from our eBook? Learn more in Numerify’s definitive guide to IT Service Analytics.
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