Enhancing the Employee Experience With Technology
The greatest expense for most businesses is their people. Technology can either enhance the employee experience or hurt it. If employees don’t have the tools they need, or if they are always working against unresolved technology issues, they can’t do the jobs they were hired to do. But they need more than reactive support when their technology breaks. Organizations need an IT Support team that is focused on preventing problems AND providing a great “customer service experience” when employees do need help. A company’s IT support team is responsible for making sure your staff can use their technology to be productive and efficient, but that’s not all.
Defining the Shifting Role of Tech Support in Business
While it is certainly necessary to have a support team available to monitor your environment and take employee requests, those are just the basics. Employee education, onboarding new employees, vendor management, and the proactive discovery of technology issues and opportunities are just a few of the other responsibilities a company’s IT support is expected to take on.
As today’s businesses become increasingly reliant on technology tools and systems, there is an ever-growing web of vendors they must manage to support their IT environment. The complexity of supporting multiple technologies from multiple vendors is a persistent challenge for businesses that lack the technology support resources they need. Without the right IT support solution, companies get stuck being the vendor “middle-man” and generally do not have time to hold vendors accountable when critical problems arise. Our IT support team helps relieve our clients of this burden so they can focus on their core business and doing the jobs they were hired to do.
Getting IT Support Doesn’t Have to Be a Headache
Let’s be honest, no one gets excited to contact the helpdesk when they have an issue. But, when users do need help, getting support should be easy and enhance the employee experience with technology. A company’s IT support team sets the tone for technology within your organization. Support should function as a knowledgeable and friendly resource for your employees to receive both IT help and education. At Aldridge, our IT support team serves not only as the go-to for our clients when they have an issue, but as a resource for educating their staff about the tools, best practices, and general “how to’s” they can leverage to make their day-to-day lives easier.
How Does IT Support Improve the Technology Experience?
Today’s growing businesses tend to expect less from IT support than they deserve. The traditional break-fix approach was focused on maintaining availability, not maximizing value when providing IT support. The following sections outline what our team provides to deliver the experience our clients expect when using their technology
Tech Support is Available Any Time You Need It
Companies with a small IT team, whether it’s an internal IT department our outsourced provider, are bound to one or few personnel to be there when needed. If Joe the IT guy from down the hall is on holiday vacation, who will troubleshoot issues for employees? Yes, some problems can wait, but what if there’s an emergency such as a network outage or data breach? How will the business restore operations and minimize risk?
Network Monitoring All Day, Every Day
If you’re not watching your network, who is? Most likely, the bad guys who are looking to exploit holes in your network and compromise your business-critical systems and data. The Aldridge Network Operations Center (NOC) proactively monitors our clients’ IT environments 24/7/365 and takes action when things aren’t operating as they should. Whether equipment is failing, there’s an internet outage, or a cyberattack strikes, our team is ready to respond.
Employees Are Informed, Aware, and Engaged
Companies often make the mistake of assuming technology alone can solve their business problems and protect against potential threats. They implement new technology tools, policies, and procedures, yet nothing seems to change. Sometimes, the changes they make lead to more problems that cost even more money to solve. If one of your employees clicks on a malicious link that results in a network breach, or simply neglects to use a new technology tool because they don’t know how, your investment loses value. At Aldridge, our IT support team leverages end-user education and training to arm our clients and their employees with important information around security awareness, best practices, the roll out of new technology tools, and more.
At the end of the day, it’s your people who determine the value your business gets from its technology. We make sure the voices of our clients and their staff are heard, so when they’re presented with changes to the way they work, they understand the value the change will provide to their everyday life and are excited to embrace it.
Employee Onboarding is a Positive Experience
When a new employee joins your organization, are they greeted with everything they need to do their job efficiently and productively? When they leave, do they still have access to business-critical data and systems? Our in-depth employee onboarding and offboarding process is key to driving productivity and security for our clients and their employees. The Aldridge IT support team has a standard process to ensure our every employee has what they need to hit the ground running and those who are departing no longer have access to critical business information when they leave. Support will handle new machine procurement, controlling employee application access, configuring employee system rights, and more for the business so its staff has a positive and productive technology experience.
You Know Your IT Issues Will Be Fixed, and When
Your technology is the foundation of your business, so if something isn’t working that is keeping more than one person from doing their job, you want an IT team who takes the initiative to prioritize, address, and resolve the issue in a way that minimizes downtime. IT Support is not only responsible for resolving everyday IT issues but doing so in a way that minimizes business impact. When our clients have any type of “work-stoppage event”, an Aldridge technician is available 24x7x365 as they work to restore the client’s IT environment. No matter the severity of the problem, after support recognizes and responds to an issue, they will establish a cadence for communicating progress updates and an expected time frame for resolution.
You’re Not Dealing with the Same IT Issue Again and Again
One of the most common signs a business is lacking sufficient IT support is when members of the organization are experiencing the same technology problems without a permanent resolution. Recurring IT problems are a sign there’s a bigger problem facing your business and can work against your efforts to improve the employee experience across your organization. If our clients experience the same issue, the Aldridge IT support team recognizes this as a red flag and takes initiative to perform a root cause analysis and identify a solution for long-term resolution.
You’re Not the “Vendor Middleman”
As more business applications and tools are moving to the cloud, it is becoming increasingly difficult to manage the numerous vendors that keep your organization up and running. When our clients have an issue with vendor-supported technology, the Aldridge IT support will elicit information on behalf of our clients and coordinate a resolution with the vendor so they can avoid being the “middleman” and focus on their core business. We hold vendors accountable and ensure that the solution they provide will fix the issue for good.
You’re Not Disrupted by IT Emergencies
If your IT team is only coming to you when there’s a problem, likely, they aren’t being proactive when monitoring your IT environment. IT support is responsible for the proactive, routine maintenance of your company’s technology tools and systems to stay ahead of potential problems facing your business. Our IT support team makes an ongoing effort to maintain a healthy technology environment for our clients, so they’re not surprised by critical issues that result in business disruption and unplanned IT costs.
How Do You Set Performance Expectations for IT Support?
We often talk to businesses whose employees are stuck waiting for their IT problems to be fixed without any clarity as to when and how the issue will be resolved. Clear expectations around handling IT issues are key to measuring the expediency and quality of IT support delivered to your business. The Aldridge Response and Resolution Guarantee is our team’s promise to provide consistent support that reflects the priorities of our clients by accounting for the cost impact of an issue on their business. We promise the following to our clients:
- Response Time Guarantee: The expected time frame in which IT support will receive, acknowledge, and begin working to address your IT issue. For example:
- 95% of incoming phone calls are answered by a technician within 120 seconds: work can begin immediately or be scheduled at the user’s convenience.
- 95% of emails are reviewed within 1 hour: a response will be generated indicating the assigned priority and either the expected time to complete resolution or the Cadence in which we will provide progress updates until resolution.
- Resolution Time Guarantee: The expected time frame in which our client’s IT issue will be resolved. For example:
- 95% of service requests that are within our control will be completed by the Resolution Goal.
- Cadence Guarantee: The expected frequency of communication throughout the resolution process. For example:
- 95% of service requests that have an external dependency (e.g., vendor or another third party) will be updated according to the Cadence Goal: we will continue to provide any assistance with the external dependency throughout the life of the request.
Ready to Get the IT Support You Need?
We understand that how your organization uses technology is just as important as what technology you use. Yes, your staff should have the tools they need to drive your business forward, but they also need more than a helpdesk to get the most from their technology. The Aldridge Framework for Successful IT approaches IT support as an innovative way to educate, engage, and empower your people to work smarter and accomplish more for your business. Take some time to evaluate what your IT support team is doing to maximize the value of your IT investment. If all you’re getting is break-fix support, it may be time to ask for more.