Have you considered operating your IT service desk around the clock? What are the advantages? Will the extra time and expenses offer a return on the investment? Here are a few cases when 24/7 service desk operations are worth the extra staff and resources expended.
If You Serve a Large Remote Workforce
Remote workers typically don’t adhere to the normal 9-5 workday. These workers set their own schedules in order to make the most use out of their time and energy, and to serve clients who might not be available during “normal” business hours. If you serve a substantial remote workforce, it’s as important to service those non-traditional workers as it is those who sit at desks all day. An additional benefit of operating the service desk outside of normal hours for remote workers is the ability to monitor for potential security breaches. Mobile devices are often the gateway for such attacks.
If You Serve Facilities Worldwide
Has your company branched out into more locations, thereby working across time zones? If so, the service desk needs to be available to accommodate workers in these various times. It’s also helpful to operate around the clock service desk if your help desk is available to customers who are outside your headquarters’ time zone. Of course, if all of your operations are stateside, it may be possible to simply extend the hours of the service desk — say from 8 am Eastern time until 5 pm Pacific time, without opening 24/7 services.
If Work is Done Around the Clock
Some work isn’t confined to normal business hours, including jobs like electrical, plumbing, and HVAC services, as well as healthcare, certain legal work, and a number of logistics operations. In these cases, it’s essential to offer the service desk around the clock, because customers who can’t get you when they call are simply going to go to one of your competitors that can offer full time service. This is equally true of education nowadays, as instructors and students are often working well outside the typical 8-4 school day.
If You Serve the General Public
The general public expects to be able to get in touch with the companies they do business with whenever it is convenient for them. Many customers work atypical hours, and aren’t able to call only during regular business hours.
If Your Work is Time-Sensitive
In jobs where timeliness is essential — such as stockbrokers making frequent and instant trades, work involving security, and other work that simply can’t wait for a number on a clock — 24/7 service desk operations have to be available when the work needs to get done.
It is often cost-prohibitive for companies to offer a 24/7 service desk, even when it is important to the company. In these situations, outsourcing is ideal. Users can get the help they need while IT workers get the rest they require to perform well the next day. Outsourcing allows you to provide full time services for less money and resources, while maintaining an excellent level of customer service.
About Chris Walls
Read more articles by Chris