Vanessa James recently posted an article on TechRepublic that is part of a growing theme being tossed around in help desk IT support circles – that as technology becomes more integrated into all aspects of how a company operates – so does the IT department become more involved with all aspects of a company’s operations. Invariably this places them in a position where they are not only supporting their ‘internal’ users but external ones as well. As she so succinctly puts it – learning to do this is not an overnight task.

The article goes on to outline four primary areas where the IT support team needs to start making changes so they are able to incorporate this new and different avenue of support:

1. Adjust your perspective;
2. Implement new support tracking software that saves you time;
3. Reassess how you look at your tasks;
4. Refine your objectives.

Although, when you read the article you will quickly see that there are really only two points here.

Point One: Outline the needs of, and support strategies for, your internal users and then side by side do the same for your new external users. Look for overlaps and similarities in processes and procedures so instead of just doubling your workload – you can intelligently apply the correct procedure based on the situation regardless of customer type. What you will end up with is a slightly expanded set of tools and a better understanding of how to support your new customer base.

Point Two: Get new help desk software that can actually save you time – she actually says that you shouldn’t just read about cool new technology but focus on “boring but useful” articles – I hope that this series comes somewhere in between . With new help desk software, your goal is to either automate some of your existing processes or find support tracking software that will work more intuitively with both internal and external customers so you can accomplish your tasks quickly and efficiently.

So what does this new help desk software need to be able to do?

From a generic standpoint it needs to be easy to use for the tasks you accomplish every day, like:

- Logging and working with tickets;
- Tracking Time;
- Accessing the knowledgebase;
- Communicating with the customer.
From an automated standpoint you will benefit from:
- Automated ticket assignment;
- Email to ticket conversion;
- Automatic email alerts;
- Active SLA tracking with escalation;
- Custom workflows.
And from a purely manual time savings perspective you will want:
- Ticket templates;
- Workflow templates;
- Pre-defined action notes;
- Pre-defined emails.

Lastly, and possible most importantly, you need to make sure that your new help desk software can easily work with both internal and external customers so you will want the ability to customize some of the above items based on the customer or the support team or both.

This is essentially, what Revelation Helpdesk does. Check out these videos to get a better understanding of how Revelation helpdesk operates and ask for a live online demo.

In the next article we’ll explore how Revelation can meet these needs in more detail (with pictures!).

Relevation™ Helpdesk 2012 is the latest version of the popular web based help desk software from YellowFish Software that helps IT departments and technical support organizations improve their end user support efficiency, maximize human resources, streamline processes and improve customer service.

Revelation is popular with IT incident management professionals in organizations of all sizes. Its modular structure is scalable from the smallest operations to those with thousands of users and hundreds of support technicians. There are various license configurations that make the software affordable for your budget.

The nimble, web based help desk solution enables IT service professionals to receive and report on the disposition of more end-user incidents in real time. Statistics gathered by YellowFish Software show that technicians can log a call in half the time it takes other systems. Revelation Helpdesk delivers a high return on investment with a low total cost of ownership.