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Every service desk owner seems to have the same set of challenges.

  • How can I reduce the ever growing number of incidents and change requests I have to deal with?
  • How can I provide better value and service to the business?
  • What can I do to improve my customer satisfaction scores?

 

The answers to these questions can often lie in automation. If there are commonly recurring incidents or requests that are currently handled manually, why not automate them? Automation enables requests to be handled instantaneously, greatly improving response times. And as a machine is doing the leg work things are done the right way every time, removing the potential for human mistakes.

 

Everyone wants self-service

What about the handling of common requests such as password resets or providing access to new applications? How long do these requests take to manage and deliver manually? Hours….days? Orchestration can enable organizations to move from a reactive, manual handling of requests to a fully automated delivery system exposed to the end users through a catalog of requestable services.

Most service desks now provide a service catalog capability, but requests made are still delivered manually. Why not automate the end to end delivery of a request through orchestration? Once again, speed and accuracy are key here as well as reducing the costs of a manual fulfillment process.

 

I was recently talking with an organization about their project in this space. The service desk was suffering from a bad reputation. It was taking them up to 5 days to reset a users password and up to 3 weeks to create a new users account. Calls for desktop support to install new software were taking weeks to fulfill. What’s the point offering these services if it takes you so long to deliver them, you’re just going to make your customers mad right!

 

The service desk made the decision to change. It didn’t have a whole lot of money to throw at the problem, they just had to work smarter and more efficiently and this was where orchestration came in. After analyzing the types of tickets and requests that were hitting the service desk they put automation in place to automatically handle the top items (like password resets) reducing the number of tickets handled manually by 30%. This alone saved them about $1m through cost avoidance. Most importantly though, the service desk satisfaction ratings rose significantly. Requests that were previously taking days or weeks were now fulfilled in minutes or hours.

 

Onwards and upwards
Once you get going with service desk automation it’s difficult to stop. Analyze potential use cases and pick the ones that will have the best business impact for the smallest amount of effort.  Deliver the use case, show success and move onto the next one. And don’t forget to show the business all the good things you’re doing along the way. Reports showing the “before automation” and “after automation” picture are great ways to demonstrate the value you’re providing. In fact our own internal BMC IT team are masters at this and publish reports for all to see on the corporate intranet (see below)

 

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Now if this doesn’t get people excited, I don’t know what will. Why not give your organization an early Christmas present and see how orchestration can help your service desk team become superstars too!

 

Happy automating!