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Getting the most out of the service desk

Getting the most out of the service desk

If you are reading this, it is safe to assume that you are familiar with the services we offer and have already had to call for assistance. We genuinely love helping out each and every one of you, but sometimes, the turnaround rate can be a little lengthier due to the volume and complexity of requests. At times, it can be incredibly frustrating to wait on us. While we can’t get rid of the inevitable wait times, hopefully, we can alleviate that frustration by providing some tips on how to help us help you, specifically regarding the ticket process we’re all so familiar with.

The best way to keep everyone informed and not overwhelmed is to minimize the number of people involved in the conversation. Obviously, there are cases where this is not realistic and completely unavoidable but, think of it like a game of telephone. The message is usually misconstrued more and more as you add people to the conversation. Try to think of who in your company would usually have the most contact with NPI and have communications go through them if possible. Otherwise, you can always call directly, or email our service desk at If you choose the latter route, please try to provide the quickest and most effective means of contacting you. This will help us get in contact with you sooner.

Bellingham Service Desk Team

As well, a very important thing to consider is the scope of the issue, and how the problem impacts the company as a whole. This isn’t to say that a program not working for someone isn’t a critical issue or matters less to us, but realistically, the inability to view a photo on a workstation will generally have a lesser financial impact on a business than the entire phone system being offline. If you can tell us objectively how critical and important an issue is, it will help the service desk immensely. Do not downplay your issues either! If your phone system is offline, email is not functioning for anyone, or an application you use 24/7 isn’t working, that is a big deal to us. Remember, if you can remain as objective and honest as possible regarding the issues that you are experiencing, it will go a long way in helping us assist you quicker.

Most everyone is naturally good at spotting differences or highlighting behavior that is different than the norm. One of the best ways to get the most out of the service desk is to explain what you are expecting to happen, what is not working, they can generally form a quick hypothesis of what is wrong with your computer. There is a fine line with this however, as something too granular can sometimes lead us astray, and increase the time we spend troubleshooting. If you come to us saying that “Outlook doesn’t work” you have landed on the other end of the spectrum. While that might be accurate, there is not enough information for us initially.

Sometimes, it is hard to take a step back and boil the problem down to the brass tacks. We are all prone to be upset by computers from time to time. If you are having a hard time quantifying or describing the issue, try taking a picture of it, or tell us what it is supposed to do or how it is supposed to behave. There is a handy shortcut on most keyboards that will allow you to turn your cursor into a lens and take photos of your desktop to share with us. To do this, you can press the Windows + Shift + S key simultaneously on your keyboard. Attaching images of the problem or error message directly to your ticket is going to make the experience just that much faster as we won’t have to recreate the problem initially.

Gary Manker - Service Desk Manager

If the matter is urgent and you’re going to be calling us to get help immediately, you can also do a little preparation work. If we need to get connected to your computer, you can start by getting your device prepared to have us connect remotely. This entails closing and saving anything you have open that isn’t directly related to the problem you’re experiencing.

Although it feels like it might not need to be said, one of the most important things you can do for us is be patient. We’re all very empathetic and understanding towards the issues you experience, and we know how frustrating it can be when computers stop working. The service desk deals with a vast array of issues and customers, and sometimes the problem you’re experiencing is a little harder for us to diagnose. We try our hardest to be realistic with ourselves and you and generally, know when we’re out of our depth. We will be honest with you; just bear with us and remember we here, at NPI, all genuinely want things to work well for you and feel bad when you’re having a tough time with your technology.