Working with Your IT Team: Five Tips for Submitting a Service Request

Working with Your IT Team: Five Tips for Submitting a Service Request

By: Dakena Harper, Client Services Coordinator, Focus Data Solutions

You’re having an issue with your computer. Needing help, you submit a service request to your help desk support team. The computer issue is not stopping your work, but it’s an issue that you’d like addressed. Your IT team has acknowledged your request and offers you a service window in two hours.

It’s often here that the Manage Services Provider (MSP) – client relationship can take a turn, and not always for the best. In our 24/7, immediate response and results culture, we’ve all come to expect instant gratification in our personal and business transactions.

It is important for IT teams and their clients to communicate effectively for a successful service experience.

Here are five suggestions for working better with your IT MSP:

Be specific

When submitting a request, either via the IT team ticket system or by phone, share the full scope of the issue. Explain the problem completely. Does the issue affect just you, or your floor or the entire company? When did the issue begin? Can you work on the computer at all?

Is this a real time emergency?

Has the server completely ceased to function? Do you suspect (or have evidence of) a hacker or data breach? Is the presentation in an hour and your computer isn’t working? IT teams respect that there are true emergencies in all businesses and will work with you to get a technician assigned to request. This level of personal service is accomplished when you calmly describe the full extent of your issue and the severity to your business.

Confirm your schedule request

Many IT service providers offer schedule windows or specific appointment times. If your issue is not an emergency and is not stopping you from being productive, ask for an appointment in the reasonable future. The Client Services Coordinator or dispatcher will help you find a time that works for all. Most important, be available during your scheduled service time. If something changes in your day, let us know and we will work to reschedule your service window.

Request updates

IT teams have communication protocols that help desk members are required to follow. Ask when your first update will be once a technician begins work. This will help you set your personal schedule and offer you an insight into your service time. If it is determined that your issue will take time to fix, your IT team can tell you this and help you understand the estimated completion time. Often IT firms can offer you a loaner computer or find other ways for you to remain productive.

Respect the IT team

Professional IT teams assist multiple clients throughout a day, sometimes in stressful business situations. Teams are asked to prioritize and re-prioritize tickets on an hourly basis to meet client demand. Understanding this and working with your IT team to address less severe tickets and emergency situations will help you develop a strong service relationship with your IT team.

MSPs do their best to quickly address issues. Firms offer Service Level agreements (SLAs) or other basic service parameters. Beyond the SLA, IT teams prioritize service requests based upon factors like: severe emergency ( a hack, data breach or server failure) severity (the server is non-responsive but functioning), number of people affected (more than one or two staff members), outages (no cable or Internet connection), and the client’s ability to work. Ticket receipt order is also considered, as no one wants a service request to linger. However, tickets may be rescheduled to address severe emergencies or immediate work stoppages. Understanding how IT firms prioritize tickets can help you help your service request to move forward.

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