We might not be living the futuristic lives of The Jetsons just yet. But in today’s world, we rely on internet technology to a degree that would have been unthinkable even 10 years ago.
While IT can push a business to giddy heights, it’s a crippling liability when things go wrong. That’s why good IT support management (ITSM) software is so crucial.
It can be tempting for a company to skip over ITSM and budget for areas that help bring a profit more directly. But remember the old adage, “For want of a horseshoe nail, the kingdom was lost.” Sometimes it’s the areas you never even think about that can give you the edge over other companies.
Good ITSM can give you that edge because your employees are free to perform at their highest level when IT problems are not bogging them down. ITSM delivers real value to your bottom line.
It can be hard to know what your business needs, however. ITSM companies offer a dizzying array of services, functionalities and modules, but which ones are really important? Below are three features you absolutely need to look for when you’re choosing the best tool for your team.
1. Knowledge Management Is Power to (and from) the People
Most of the time when something goes wrong with your computer, you’re not the Lone Ranger. Others will have had that problem too, and some of them might have even solved it. Maintaining a dynamically updated knowledge base is important because doing so gives your employees the ability to access a library of those potential solutions.
Moreover, accessing articles means your employees can completely sidestep the ticket queue and search for—and implement—solutions themselves. A faster, self-serve fix means less expenses and less downtime for your workers, yielding more completed work at the end of the day.
An article database also empowers employees to create their own contributions and submit them. This ability frees up IT support staff to work on the truly unusual problems. Crowdsourced articles might seem like a minus since they cause employees to invest time in writing them, but they’re actually a big win.
Sometimes a problem is truly particular to a certain building or network, and it’s much more efficient overall to be able to learn from someone else’s experience.
2. Problem Management that Gets to the Heart of the Matter
It’s important to distinguish between a problem and an incident. Incidents are the everyday issues that cause computers to crash, lock up, or otherwise mess up. A problem is a condition caused by many incidents that are related in some way.
Now, any ITSM worth its salt can deal with incidents with reasonable competence. But there is a difference in seeking out the causal factor behind the incidents. Such a factor requires you to develop a work-around in order to prevent the problem from happening again.
Managing problems takes an entirely different level of skill than managing incidents does. You don’t want to waste time dealing with the same issues popping up again and again. You need to be able to empower your IT staff to seek out and deal with the root causes of those incidents.
Recurring IT problems are a definite waste of your employees’ time, so fixing problems for good is a big help to your company’s bottom line. After all, your Employee of the Month can’t close that sale if her computer keeps messing up.
3. Work Smarter with Automation
You know the old saying: work smarter, not harder. Sysaid’s helpdesk software includes automatic routing features that can help you do just that. The software makes sure that every incoming service ticket is categorized, given a priority ranking, and assigned to the right person in your IT department.
For example, with automation you can set up rules for escalating a ticket. If a ticket hasn’t been resolved within a certain amount of time, you can ensure it becomes a higher priority for the IT service desk.
Or say that one member of your IT staff is an expert with Macs. In that case, you want to make sure that all tickets for a Mac computer incident get routed that way. Automating tickets also means you’ll be able to monitor how long your service tickets spend in each state of resolution. Doing so will help you identify and troubleshoot any bottlenecks that might occur.
Finally, automation can be helpful on a purely mundane level. You can set up reminders for tasks such as software expiration dates. Keeping software updated is one area in which you surely want to be vigilant. Computers with outdated virus protection, for example, are vulnerable to an attack that can bring your whole system down.
To Sum Up Tech Support Software Features
There is one theme that connects all three of the software features I just named. They can heavily impact a company’s bottom line. That’s true for a company of any size, from the fledgling firm operating out of a rented basement to a Fortune 500 veteran.
All businesses can benefit from a robust IT service management program. Just make sure it has the qualities you need.
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