Posted on: August 10, 2018
Managing IT Support for Small to Medium Organizations
The changing business landscape continues to uncover never-before-seen challenges for small to medium-sized organizations. Given the technology-driven operations, one of the main challenges organizations face is how to manage IT Support services for their teams. Regardless of the size of the team, from a two-man partnership to the huge, multi-department structure, organizations face these three common challenges:
1.Raising concerns about IT problems and responding to them do not have a structure or process to follow.
Many organizations don’t have a standardized way of resolving problems and issues. For small to medium-sized organizations, most of the time, there’s no “ticketing” system for employees to raise their IT concerns. The usual case would be an employee opens a ticket; the ticket gets assigned to an IT personnel; They troubleshoot and fix. But, in the end, nobody quite understood why the issue happened (is it user-error or a system-error) and there’s no documented reason on why the solution implemented was the best way to go. An IT service management solution can provide structure to such challenges providing an IT helpdesk or support to make srue there are formal workflows to be followed by employees whenever an IT issue is identified. Some of the minor and repetitive requests may even be streamlined and automated. There are ways to have a standard / “templated” response to specific and repetitive issues. Setting the IT resolution workflow can surely help organizations roll-out a formal process for these day to day queries.
2. Low to no understanding of what works and what doesn’t work for their type of organization.
Without a proper IT support strategy in place, organizations rarely have a complete understanding of what works and what doesn’t work for their structure. This means that organizations don’t know which processes actually resolve IT problems much faster, which processes are “band-aid” solutions and should have a more long-term resolution to it. Sometimmes, the first step to understanding what works and what doesn’t is to ask the main “customers” of the IT process. Ask for customer satisfaction and see what affects their work more and see where the positive and negative feedback fall right into.
3. Impact of IT Problems to staff efficiency cannot be measured, thus making it hard to identify if IT support is an organizational priority or not.
One of the most common source of misunderstanding between the IT support professional (if there’s anyone assigned to that role in the organization, especially for small organizations) and the internal clients is the long turnaroung times in resolving IT issues. IT teams have a hard time gauging whether or not their teams and the people who compose the team are actually effective at doing their work, or if they’re even equipped with the right tools, training, and resources to actually resolve IT issues across the organization. One of the most immediate steps which may be taken to address this common pain point is to set Service Level Agreements (SLA) for the different types of concerns and communicate this across the organization. This sets the baseline for the IT team to deliver results at the most agreeable timeframe, agreed upon by different stakeholders in the organization.
Organizations like CMS Information Technology in Australia can provide external guidance and support to small- and medium-scale organizations to address some of these concerns. Given the limited manpower and resources of small organizations, management can and should consider outsourcing this function to organizations whose expertise are precisely in this area of IT support.