Service Desk: A Complete Guide (2023)

What is a service desk?

A service desk is a centralized point of contact between an organization and its employees and is responsible for managing and resolving service or support requests. The service desk is typically the first point of contact for employees who need assistance with their internal support requests, and it is responsible for managing and coordinating the resolution of those requests. Service desks use a set of best practices and frameworks, such as the ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library), to ensure that they provide high-quality, consistent support to users.

Why do you need a service desk?

Service desks are important for internal support resolution because they provide a central point of contact for employees who need help with IT, HR, and service issues. This can help to ensure that employees are able to get the support they need in a timely and efficient manner, which can help to improve overall productivity and reduce downtime.

A service desk can help standardize and streamline the support process and ensure that employees receive consistent, high-quality support. This can help prevent problems from escalating and reduce the overall time and cost of providing IT support.

Additionally, a service desk can serve as a valuable source of data and information for the IT department. By tracking and analyzing the types of issues and questions that are raised by employees, an IT service desk can help the IT team identify trends and patterns, and can provide valuable insights into areas where the organization may need to improve its IT support.

What are the most common channels for a service desk?

    A service desk channel is a medium of communication through which your employee chooses to submit a support request. Here are the most popular support channels:

  • Self-Service: Knowledge base (FAQs) and Self-Service portals
  • Internal communication: Slack or Microsoft Teams
  • Support email
  • Employees in large organizations can also contact support through direct phone calls

Who manages a service desk?

It is typically managed by a team of professionals who are responsible for specific modules at a service desk. The specific responsibilities may vary depending on the size and needs of the organization.

For an enterprise, the service desk team usually comprises an asset manager, an incident manager, a change manager, a release manager, a process manager, and an account administrator.

For small or medium businesses, either a single or a group of administrators, including a site administrator, an account administrator, and a super administrator, will manage the service desk.

What is service desk software?

Service desk software is a tool that is designed to help organizations manage and solve their employee’s internal support requests. It typically includes a range of tools and features that are aimed at improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the service desk, such as ticketing systems, inventory management, asset management, vendor management, and service catalogs. Service desk software may also include tools for tracking and analyzing employee feedback, as well as tools for monitoring and reporting on the performance of the service desk.

What are the popular features of service desk software?

Request Management: This is a function that groups incidents and service request tickets under their respective categories, which will enable easy assignment of tickets.

Service Catalog: A service catalog is a database that lists the services that an organization provides to its employees. It provides a centralized location for employees to browse and request services and is used by service desk staff to manage and track requests.

SLA management: SLA or service level agreement are goals companies set to meet employee expectations. They help define consistent and efficient service delivery. A service desk system would provide the company with data on how often they meet their goals and alert them when tickets are likely to breach their SLA.

Custom Reporting: Reports help analyze support performance. Customize metrics on staff performance and ticket inflow to understand problem areas and tackle critical pain points.

Asset Management: It is the process of tracking and managing the hardware and software assets of an organization. It helps reduce the risk of security breaches and data loss, and streamlines the process of troubleshooting and resolving issues with hardware and software.

Incident Management: This function lets you organize all your incidents, assign them based on complexity and urgency, and build a strong system that eliminates incident tickets and their recurrence.

What questions should you ask yourself before you start looking for a service desk solution?

What are the specific needs and goals of your organization?
Consider the types of service requests you receive, the number of users you need to support, and what would be the main incoming channel on which you would receive the support requests.

Who will be using the service desk?
Understand what business processes around internal support would be implemented in the service desk. Finalize which departments would be using the service desk to provide support.

How will you measure the success of the service desk solution?
Determine what metrics you will use to measure the success of the solution, such as the number of service requests resolved, the time it takes to resolve service requests, and the overall satisfaction of users.

What are some of the most popular service desk software?

Some of the best service desk software available are cloud-based (SaaS). The most popular service desk software are ServiceNow, HappyFox Service Desk, Freshservice, and Jira Service Desk.

What are some of the most popular apps that work alongside service desk software?

  • Slack, Microsoft Teams, to raise tickets and give updates through chat
  • Okta, to sync user data from Okta to service desk and trigger and access management actions
  • Jamf, to sync asset data into the service desk
  • Azure DevOps and JIRA, for general tickets syncing between the apps for status updates
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