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Help Desk

Help desk

A help desk is a resource intended to provide the customer or end user with information and support related to a company’s or institution’s products and services

Help desk Names and professional association

While the term “Help desk” initially implied the place where employees receive technical support relating to their organization’s IT infrastructure, the scope of the term has expanded in meaning and use

Help desk Names and professional association

The Help Desk Institute (HDI) was formed as a professional association in 1989, its purpose being to focus on the development of technical support personnel and the sharing of optimal practices. It adopted the name HDI in 2004 to reflect the maturing of the support industry. Technical support was expanded to cover desktop systems as well as provide other types of assistance for customers of organizations.

Help desk Functions

A typical help desk can effectively perform several functions

Help desk Functions

In the mid-1990s, research by Iain Middleton of Robert Gordon University studied the value of an ‘s help desks. It found that value was derived not only from a reactive response to user issues, but also from the help desk’s unique position of communicating daily with numerous customers or employees. Information gained in areas such as technical problems, user preferences, and satisfaction can be valuable for the planning and development work of other information technology units.

Help desk Organization

Large help desks are often structured into different levels to handle different types of questions

Help desk Organization

Large help desks have a person or team responsible for managing the incoming requests, called “issues”; they are commonly called queue managers or queue supervisors

Help desk Organization

A large number of these help desks have strict rosters. Time is set aside for analysts to perform tasks such as following up on problems, returning phone calls, and answering questions via email. This roster system ensures that all analysts have enough time to follow up on calls and also ensures that analysts are always available to take incoming phone calls. As the incoming phone calls are random in nature, help desk agent schedules are often maintained using an Erlang C calculation.

Help desk Desk side team

The desk side team (sometimes known as “desktop support”) is responsible for issues related to desktops, laptops, and peripherals, such as personal digital assistants

Help desk Network team

The network team is responsible for the network software, hardware and infrastructure, such as servers, switches, backup systems, and firewalls

Help desk Server team

The server team is responsible for most or all of the servers within the organization. This includes Domain Name System (DNS) servers, network authentication, network shares, network resources, email accounts, and all aspects of server software. It may also include more advanced services such as those related to databases, storage or content management systems, specialized proprietary services, and other industry-specific server-based applications.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Types of help desks

The management and support of IT assets is essential for all businesses

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Types of help desks

Traditional – Help desks have been traditionally used as call centers. Telephone support was the main medium used until the advent of Internet. Although telephone support has worked effectively and is still being used today, it has a number of weaknesses. For example, it is frustrating for customers to be put on hold or navigate automated phone answering messages.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Types of help desks

Internet – The advent of the Internet has provided the opportunity for potential and existing customers to communicate with suppliers directly and to review and buy their services online. Customers can email their problems without being put on hold over the phone. One of the largest advantages Internet help desks have over call centers are that it is available 24/7. This is extremely important in today’s global business world where customers and staff members may be in different time zones.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Help desk software common functions

Help desk software systems range in complexity from basic ticket logging to fully integrated CRM systems.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Help desk software common functions

Functionality is varied, but the essential core elements are the recording and tracking of support requests.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Help desk software common functions

Reporting is important and often complemented by a third party application for user-definable reports.

Helpdesk and incident reporting auditing – Help desk software common functions

Service Level management is often crucial to the help desk process as a measure of its success. This is usually an automated benefit of the help desk application.

Service desk – Differences from a call center, contact center, help desk

ITIL regards a Call Center, Contact Centre (business)|Contact Center or a help desk as limited kinds of service desk which provide only a portion of what a service desk can offer

Help desk

A ‘help desk’ is a resource intended to provide the customer or end user with information and support related to a company’s or institution’s products and services

Help desk – Names and professional association

While the term Help desk initially implied the place where employees receive technical support relating to their organization’s IT infrastructure, the scope of the term has expanded in meaning and use

Help desk – Functions

A typical help desk can effectively perform several functions

Help desk – Functions

In the mid-1990s, research by Iain Middleton of Robert Gordon UniversityMiddleton, I Key Factors in Help Desk Success (An analysis of areas critical to help desk development and functionality.) British Library RD Report 6247, The British Library 1996 studied the value of an organization’s help desks

Help desk – Organization

Large help desks have a person or team responsible for managing the incoming requests, called issues; they are commonly called queue managers or queue supervisors

Help desk – Desk side team

The desk side team (sometimes known as desktop support) is responsible for issues related to desktop computer|desktops, laptops, and computer peripheral|peripherals, such as personal digital assistants

Help desk – Network team

The computer network|network team is responsible for the network software, hardware and infrastructure, such as Server (computing)|servers, switches, backup systems, and firewall (networking)|firewalls

Help desk – Other teams

Some companies have a telecommunication|telecom team that is responsible for telephone infrastructure such as Private branch exchange|PBX, voicemail, VOIP, telephone sets, modems, and fax machines. They are responsible for configuring and moving telephone numbers, voicemail setup and configuration, having been assigned these types of issues by the help desk.

Help desk – Other teams

Companies with custom application software may also have an applications team who are responsible for the development of in-house software. The help desk may assign to the applications team such problems as finding software bugs. Requests for new features or information about the capabilities of in-house software that come through the help desk are also assigned to applications groups.

Help desk – Other teams

The help desk staff and supporting information technology|IT staff may not all work from the same location. With Remote Assistance Software|remote access applications, technicians are able to solve many help desk issues from another work location or their home office. While there is still a need for on-site support to effectively collaborate on some issues, remote support provides greater flexibility.

Help Desk (webcomic)

‘Help Desk’ is a webcomic by Christopher B

Help Desk (webcomic) – Ubersoft

Ubersoft is a fictional computer software company run by an ethereal being from another plane, otherwise known as Mr

Help Desk (webcomic) – Alex

Alex is Help Desk’s protagonist. He is a technical-support technician working on Ubersoft’s telephone support lines. His job has been described as not necessarily to solve a customer’s problems, but to make the customer feel that what they think is a problem isn’t really a problem and they’re wasting my time and yours. (He describes his unique red-and-green eyeglasses as a special prescription.)

Help Desk (webcomic) – The Boss

Also known as Mr

Help Desk (webcomic) – The Boss

He created two clones of himself, which proceeded to become the heads of SCO Group|SCO and the RIAA

Help Desk (webcomic) – Binky the Cheerful Winking Paperclip

Binky is a helpful little fellow who is (almost) always cheerful, and is a parody of Microsoft’s Office Assistant

Help Desk (webcomic) – Mark

Mark is the technical writer for Ubersoft

Help Desk (webcomic) – Mark

Mark is currently working for the US Military to document software that is being used to keep Steve Jobs’ ego in its Parallel universe (fiction)|extradimensional prison.

Help Desk (webcomic) – Alice

As the lone female character at Ubersoft, Alice is nonetheless able to hold her own quite undeniably

Help Desk (webcomic) – Scott

Scott is the only member of the Help Desk crew allowed to help the customers, although he is stymied by being forced to talk in a different language to the customer

Help Desk (webcomic) – Viktor Shreck

Viktor is Ubersoft’s legal consultant. He acts as the company’s representative in all of their court cases, often using illogical and nonsensical arguments. In addition, he seems to take it upon himself to keep the boss’s evil up to par. Viktor shares a kind of kinship with The Boss, because he is also not an ordinary mortal: he is undead, since he’s a vampire, and, like all high-powered corporate lawyers, he does not have a reflection.

Help Desk (webcomic) – Deep Grey

A sentient supercomputer created by Ubersoft (and a parody of IBM’s Deep Blue (chess computer)|Deep Blue), Deep Grey’s original purpose was to replace the human help-desk operators with machines. It would be non-union and conform to whatever demands were placed upon it. Unfortunately for Ubersoft, it decided that the corporate benefits package was inadequate; it resigned, taking a job as vice president of a rival corporation.

Help Desk (webcomic) – Phil

As Ubersoft’s former head programmer

Comparison of help desk issue tracking software

This article is a comparison of notable issue tracking systems used primarily for help desks and Service Desk (ITSM)|service desks rather than for bug tracking system|bug tracking or project management.

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