Helping IT to help you    

No matter how well designed and implemented the system, someone eventually calls upon their IT helpdesk for assistance. These requests are typically entered into helpdesk software, made over the phone, or sent by email.

The IT helpdesk staff is there to assist, to ensure that end users are not hindered by technology. It is not just part of their job, many of these unsung heroes enjoy assisting. Everyone understands that things break. It is the task of IT helpdesk staff to get the broken things fi xed so end users can get back to work quickly.

To speed up the repair process, helpdesk staff benefit from receiving detailed problem descriptions. The better the description the end user sends, the quicker every problem is resolved.

Here are some examples:
BAD Improved
“The internet is down.” “I get an error every time I open my browser. The error says, “Error in memory location 23F6x0”.”
“I can’t open the attachment.” “A client sent me an MS Word document and my computer says that I can’t open this version.”
“Email doesn’t work.” Worse!- “I can’t send emails. Something pops up that says I am above quota and need to delete some of my emails.”

The last example is labeled worse because the error message explains the problem and the end user hasn’t taken the time to help themselves by following the stated instructions.

By being clear and detailed with descriptions of their problems, the end-user assists the helpdesk staff to resolve the problem in a much more timely fashion; thereby the end user can get back to work rapidly. Remember, the more detailed the information, the quicker the helpdesk staff can resolve the issue.

Originally published September, 2008
Fragment - Current Release


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