Can you improve your self-service portal in one hour?

Sounds impossible right? Yet by following a few simple steps, your self-service portal can improve measurably. Eric Wright explains how.

Quick steps to improve your IT self-service portal

Quick steps to improve your IT self-service portal

Automated IT support delivered via self-service must be mastered to improve efficiency and service levels. However, the effort involved in gathering knowledge and adding it to the self-service portal means that projects often stretch to months without delivering benefits.  

However, by taking a step back and employing some smart technology, it’s possible to improve the business value offered by your self-service facility in less than an hour.  

The starting point for improving knowledge management and self-service is intelligence gathering.   

Tackle the big topics
Given you only have an hour, you don’t have time for surveys and extensive feedback. Fortunately, all you need is a snapshot of the problems you’re trying to solve. The best people to give you this info are the front line people speaking to customers: the service desk.

I guarantee that a quick straw poll of these people will reveal the most common problems they deal with. They will also know the fix off by heart.

The art of improving your self-service portal in one hour is capturing this critical information and finding the best way to impart it to the business. 

What are the top five issues that people need help with? Can you add this to a knowledge base or automate the support interaction in a similar way to a password reset process? Spend your hour adding one or two of these problems/solutions to your self-service facility and you’ll stave off a decent volume of problems.  

(If you want to go beyond my allotted hour, bring department heads into the conversation. What are the IT challenges they face? Not only can the intelligence this reveals help you improve self-service, it can help hone all the services you offer.)

System problems
You may at this point be thinking: “Hang on. Did Eric just tell me to find out my top five problems and add a few of them to the self-service portal, all within an hour? Bwaaaahahahaha.”

The problem for most organisations - the reason why my one hour challenge appears folly - is the speed of updating the self-service portal. Yes, you may be able to quickly feed into the knowledge base, but it will never become a usable article connected to any associated workflow in that time frame.

This is true for most self-service portals. But Richmond ServiceDesk is different. We’ve built something called Customer Service Workflow into our self-service portal. This allows you to quickly add knowledge. But crucially, it allows you to create the knowledge ‘tree’ which is critical to effective self-service, e.g. if you answer X, move to step Y. Best of all, this is actioned by a drag and drop interface.  

Don’t believe me? Please arrange an online demo. Once you see how quick and easy it is to create usable knowledge articles and workflow solutions in Richmond ServiceDesk, you’ll believe the hype. It IS possible to improve the self-service portal in one hour.