Service Management Software – 3 Benefits To Mapping Your Business Processes

by admin on July 12, 2011

Service Management Software – 3 Benefits To Mapping Your Business Processes

Implementing a service management software tool, getting the facts over time primarily will give you an excellent ITIL service desk implementation.  Tracking and resolving incidents is one of the major goals of a service desk software solution. However, what you measure, the way you measure, the reports you create and how you interpret the results can bring you help desk best practice.

The first priority is to map out your business processes from an incident being reported – where it goes to, who it goes to, what do they do and then the various paths that are taken depending on the incident and what happens after that. The companies with best practices have a lot of up to date documentation available whereas others without the documentation still know what to do with an incident once it is logged. However, does this make the best use of the available information? Are there other opportunities to get more value from the investment made in people and technology?

It is very possible that well thought out business processes will help develop staff measurement indicators, create real time, in depth dashboard reporting that give the immediate facts and help make business decisions and respond to critical situations with clear escalation procedures.

Staff Measurement
Performance measurement is fundamental to getting best practice. Often, incident resolution is achieved quickly, but with the help of many of your staff. How do you measure the value each staff member contributes?   For example, if you were running statistics on closure rates, the person who opens and closes the incident might get all the closure rates, but the resolution might have actually come from other people. You need to look at how the system is tracking who has worked on what and which piece of data you’re going to report on. Knowing this gives you a much clearer way of understanding how well your staff are performing.

Dashboard Reporting
Dashboard reporting is a growing trend as companies want to understand in real time how they are progressing against their performance benchmarks. Today’s systems allow you to develop graphs and drill down to see what are the underlying records immediately. Dashboards can be made available to service staff, call centre managers and business unit management. For example, a graph can show the currently logged, active or waiting incidents. Everyone in the service value chain can quickly make decisions based on live data, although the view can be different depending on responsibilities.

This capability is very important because the team leader will want to see their team’s current workload and they might have to adjust that workload for each person. People on the front line might have a different view as well, depending on your process.  You may have a closed loop process where an incident comes into a customer service representative person, is resolved by many, but comes back to same representative to deal with the customer. The customer service rep needs to see whether service levels may be breached and will have a graph or an alert so that escalation procedures need to be invoked, priorities changed.

Escalation Procedures
Part of managing your service levels is to have escalation procedures in place. Many service desk software systems have these in built and customer service staff and management follow these procedures based on alerts. These alerts are different for various organisation levels. For example, your dashboard should give you the first idea of the progress of incident resolution. However, if a service level may be breached, a customer service representative might be alerted, if it continues an automatic notification goes to customer service management and then possibly to the business.

Often, a customer service representative waits for the customer to provide additional information to resolve an incident. For example, if a screen shot of an error has been requested and the customer does not respond, then having the ability to “stop the clock” until the information is received gives a more correct indication of how quickly the incident is being resolved. It also allows service desk staff to escalate to the business when the required information has not been given.

To get the best return on your service management software, mapping your business processes so that they are well defined and understood will give you the best chance of achieving best practice. While customer satisfaction with fast and accurate incident resolution is the goal, your business processes will help you better define staff measurement, dashboard reporting for great customer communication and escalation procedures to deal with potential service level breaches quickly and decisively.

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