A growing number of end-users are circumventing their IT departments and instead seeking help via social networks and communities, citing that their IT Service Management team is slow or doesn’t actually solve the problem. With a growing number of end users turning to social media to seek faster help for IT service issues, perhaps it’s time for IT Service Management to take a closer look.
Organizations are increasingly adopting social media in various functional areas including marketing, sales and customer service. And the call to “socialize the enterprise” is indeed beginning to reach the IT Service Management organization. However, instead of taking a “can’t beat ‘em join ‘em” approach or completely ignoring the social side of IT service, we recommend a social IT Service Management plan that begins by focusing on improving communications with customers while delivering high service levels. Following are several uses of social platforms to enhance ITSM.
Leveraging social platforms in IT Service Management
Organizations are beginning to see the value of deploying social platforms internally, to better connect colleagues and leverage knowledge while encouraging innovation. Social platforms have been especially useful in larger, geographically dispersed organizations and those that are highly mobile. Enterprise social networks such as Chatter, SharePoint, NewsGator, and Yammer are popular social platforms that ITSM teams could leverage to not only improve service delivery, but more importantly improve the business of IT Service Management.
One use of social media can be to communicate an upcoming service advisory or notify end users of an outage. But it also has the potential to transform IT Service Management from a reactive one-to-one problem solving approach to a proactive and collaborative community approach to serving multiple customers simultaneously. The idea is that it is faster and more efficient to use social tools to leverage the collective knowledge of the community, especially when it comes to more basic IT service issues. Setting up communities or user groups that enable support teams as well as other users to field many of the more basic issues, can free valuable phone and chat queues for more challenging issues and reduce overall time customers spend in the queue. Blogs and wikis can leverage incident reports and the knowledge base to keep users updated on common issues and how to resolve them.
Self-help IT Service Management
While we’re not suggesting that every issue be handled via social platforms, there are numerous IT service issues that can be handled more quickly through social platforms, many of which end users are more familiar with and comfortable using. By socializing the more mundane issues that service desks field, IT Service Management organizations can operate more efficiently with existing resources and keep critical business applications and IT frameworks running smoothly.
The reality is that companies are using social platforms to communicate and end users are turning to social platforms in lieu of their own service desks to seek help. The IT Service Management team should at least monitor social platforms to be aware of issues and intervene when necessary to either provide a resolution, direct the user to a wiki or knowledge base where the answer lies, or ask the end user to complete a support ticket, providing a link to the ticket system.
Social IT Service Management is not about putting all of IT support in the hands of a community. It’s about being present in the platforms and making ITSM even more accessible where your customers are already.
Learn more about how you can enhance your service organization by contacting the ITSM experts at Nimsoft today.