The service desk goes social - does it?

There has been a lot of hype about social media and the service desk over the course of last year. There is no doubt, the social media trend is shaping IT service management and the service desk. And, an up to date IT service management solution should leverage from the scope of benefits that social media platforms provide.

 

What does this mean? IT Service Management and social media is a really complex subject with many facets. In this blog post I want to focus on one aspect only: By "leverage" I mean here that IT and IT service management solutions can learn a lot from worldwide online communities, and use parts of the related communication technologies and communication behavior to become more efficient as an IT organization and to act as expected by their customers.

 

But neither the need for support (again I mean provided by IT, not an anonymous online community), nor the need for process will go away. Automation and improvement need workflows and process to make sense - just to name two. But then I also see a trend that more first-level support is handled more ad-hoc by communicating with someone in real-time, someone from the same company who may have a quick solution, within the same location or another part of the world. Maybe there is a colleague in the application team, maybe a database expert, or a network specialist who has a quick answer. This is especially important for support requests where self-service support and the knowledge management database do not provide the expected answer. Online collaboration (chat) capabilities, built into or integrated with the service desk, can support this trend.

 

While just using standard social media chat platforms as they are appears to be a good start for this, they are lacking the service desk context. HP Enterprise Collaboration provides context-based conversations and integrates with HP and 3rd party solutions. Its out-of-the-box integration with HP Service Manager allows you to carry on online conversations in the context of an incident. Everyone being part of the conversation automatically gets the incident context, no matter when and from where this person logs in ... Everyone has the information needed to quickly and efficiently collaborate to find a solution. For more details you can visit the link mentioned before or directly go to the HP Live Network.

 

To answer my introductory question whether the IT service desk goes social: Well, it depends how you read it. Will popular social media platforms (or similar technologies) replace the service desk? They will not do so in the shortterm, I think; but the way IT - in fact we all - communicate is and will be changing. It looks like the era of phone calls, text messages and email being the predominant means for remote personal communication is approaching an end. I know this is a rather provocative statement but I think there is some truth in it. Your service desk should be prepared for these changes to go social step by step - a first step can be to leverage context-sensitive online collaboration capabilities.

 

What do you think about ITSM and social media? Does your IT already use social media technologies? Will self-service support and online communities entirely replace first-level support? What would this mean for the service desk? ... just some food for thought.

 

Have a nice day,

Michael Pott

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About the Author
Michael Pott is a Product Marketing Manager for HP ITSM Solutions. Responsibilities include out-bound marketing and sales enablement. Mic...


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