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How much is IT support costing your business?

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Many organizations do not actually know how much IT support costs them. Sure, they probably know exactly how much they spend on wages, software and equipment for their service desk. But what about the hidden costs? What about missed opportunities?

The IT service desk is a vital part of any business, affecting everything from employee productivity to customer satisfaction to overall operations. It’s how new hires get onboarded and departing employees are deboarded, and it helps the company work better. It’s not only a problem-solving site, but also a source of organizational strategy, development and digital transformation

The service desk is an extension of the company and it typically interacts with workers, clients and customers as much as – or more than – any other department. If IT support isn’t efficient and effective, it can have a detrimental impact on organizational output and the entire business might suffer.

Maintaining permanent IT staff does not always make economic sense for a small company, which may feel its needs and budget don’t warrant an in-house service desk. Of course, not providing quick and useful support can lead to long wait times for unhappy customers, significant productivity gaps within the workforce and operational inefficiencies throughout the business. But, unfortunately, the prohibitive cost of such round-the-clock support for information technology systems means many small organizations struggle without it. 

Because of this, some companies decide to outsource service desk support, which can be a flexible, cost-effective solution. Choosing an expert managed services provider enables businesses to leverage the benefits, savings and security of innovative IT automation and support.

IT support has come a long way

Legacy IT systems rely on outdated software or hardware no longer supported by a supplier, inferior equipment and outdated strategy. This support is wasteful and disjointed, often requiring countless staffing hours, upkeep and expense that could better be used on process improvements. Many small companies today – and even large ones in industries like airlines, banking and insurance – still use antiquated IT systems from as early as the 1990s.

But there’s a faster, cheaper and more efficient way to manage your IT support. Self-service options now give both customers and employees access to crucial help on a 24/7 basis. Automation solves problems instantly or allows end-users to troubleshoot issues themselves using a vast digital knowledge base.

Thanks to developments and integrations in artificial intelligence (AI), natural language processing (NLP) and robotic process automation (RPA), including chatbots, machine learning and other innovative new tools, organizations can slash support costs and eliminate many low-value processes. This results in streamlined communication and operations, keeping key employees free to concentrate on more important work that drives profitability, customer satisfaction and business growth.

For too many companies, the IT service desks spend the majority of their time and resources on low-value tasks, such as password resets and system crashes. Automated IT support from an outsourced provider can analyze user tickets and deliver solutions that don’t require the involvement of a busy employee. 

Self-service portals, chatbot functionality, database management, automatic onboarding, superior infrastructure and enhanced security are among the features of an IT Process Automation Manager. This enterprise-grade solution can boost service delivery speed, reduce lag time, minimize manual errors, increase staff productivity and help achieve organizational compliance.

What should your IT service desk provide?

Automated IT support can deliver a range of services to make your business more efficient, including:

Ticket processing

Automated IT service desks handle incoming tickets to reduce human intervention. Each ticket is categorized and then routed to the relevant department, or a self-service solution is offered to the user. Ticket processing is a time-consuming, laborious job for people, but it takes mere seconds with a powerful IT service desk in place.

SLA compliance

Service level agreements (SLA) are vitally important to technology firms. Repeatedly breaching an SLA can result in legal and financial consequences. Automated IT support desks identify SLA issues and escalate them to the necessary individuals as a matter of immediate urgency.

Customer updates

Based on the customer’s ticket request, an IT service desk can provide an automated update on the progress and status of an issue. For example, if a password reset request is made, a chatbot can be programmed to provide an average waiting time for help. Or, the chatbot can easily provide detailed instructions on how to reset a password.

Productivity ratings

Assessing a traditional IT support desk’s performance can be a painstaking and hard-to-measure process. But an automated system provides you with a vast array of reports via a simple dashboard. The accessible metrics include average time to resolution, average answer speed, downtime, first contact resolution rate and more.

Repetitive tasks

IT departments spend nearly one-third of their time on basic, low-value tasks. But robotic process automation (RPA) can handle several tasks with no human intervention. Among others, these tasks can include password resets, multi-factor authentication setup and cybersecurity configurations.

Automated onboarding

Traditional onboarding is a lengthy, fragmented process. New hires need a lot of assistance, information and access, which often comes from many different places and involves a lot of separate tickets. The same goes for departing employees, and it also involves security issues.

Automating the onboarding and deboarding process increases efficiency and improves security, so that a new hire is set up and ready to go with just a few clicks. But not every business has the technological tools or resources to implement this on its own.

How Calance can help

Calance offers clients a Process Automation Manager and its proprietary Service Delivery Manager for automated onboarding and deboarding. We leverage a number of technologies and streamline the process with scripted, but still-customizable, programs to make the hiring process easier, faster, more integrated, efficient and secure. In addition, we can provide all the other automated solutions and support benefits of an IT service desk.

Rethink your IT support strategy sooner rather than later to start saving money and time. An automated IT service desk solution can help you cut costs, reduce calls, improve end-user experience, boost your organizational capability and increase business profitability. Calance is a global IT services firm but the small-business IT service desk solution.