Evolution of the service desk
The service desk has been a cornerstone of IT departments for decades, but the evolving needs of employees are now significantly changing the future of work. The help desk is transitioning from a reactive, manual intervention-based service model to an approach that is proactive, intuitive, and digitally enabled. This transition is taking a quantum leap forward through the adoption of new-age, next-gen technologies leveraging a multi-channel approach. The digital service desk of today is adding more and more capabilities, not just to keep up with business progress, but for acting as a catalyst for transforming the workplace into a strong, technology-driven, and customer-centric organization.
Digital transformation, prolific cloud adoption, and the evolution of next-gen technologies are the compelling, overarching drivers shaping the future of work across industries. The service desk must align with these changes to stay relevant for organizations. For example, cloud capabilities enable organizations to access and analyze large swathes of data and drive the analytics that help them serve customers better. As global enterprises turn to the cloud, the service desk must do so, too.
Intelligent automation, AI, and chatbot technologies
Automation is being integrated into the service desk to provide faster and more efficient service as it helps streamline processes, reduce errors, and save time. Organizations can achieve quicker responses to inquiries and more efficient handling of tasks such as resetting passwords, creating new accounts, and managing software updates.
Intelligent virtual assistants (IVA) also augment automation in the service desk workflow. Empowered with natural language understanding (NLU) capabilities, IVAs can further enhance the self-service capabilities with keywords and phrases from the organization’s knowledge base.
AI- and ML-driven hyper-automation can automate mundane and repetitive tasks, identify patterns and anomalies, and streamline operations. Hyper-automation can improve the employee experience by automating the service processes. ML algorithms can identify trends by analyzing employee information. Also, ML algorithms and techniques such as clustering or classification can identify trends by analyzing employee information. By clustering or classifying employees together, the algorithm can identify patterns and trends that might not be apparent when looking at individual employees, thereby enabling organizations to target specific activities or incentives toward that group.
Self-service is the way forward
The traditional help desk is also poised to transition from a transactional first-level IT support to a zero-touch service desk, implying an intelligent, automated approach to resolving issues with as little human involvement as possible. With this, organizations will steadily move towards self-service solutions enabling employees to access needed services wherever and whenever. Self-service will be especially beneficial for large organizations with multiple geo locations or employee bases, giving IT workers more time to focus on complex issues.
Examples of self-service options in service desks of the future include virtual agents, chatbots, and automated systems that can reply to customer inquiries. These solutions will let employees access required information easily, cutting down on wait times and increasing employee satisfaction. Overall, self-service solutions will make the services more cost-effective, while enhancing the employee experience.
Personalization of the employee experience
The one-size-fits-all era has ended. The service desk of the future will incorporate persona-driven methodology to create user profiles of the employees based on their roles, devices used, and workloads, for instance. The profiles can further hyper-personalize the resolutions offered based on the key parameters.
Personalizing the service desk involves tailoring it to meet the unique needs of everyone. This can include customizing the service desk interface, personalizing service requests, and providing customized responses. By using employee data, service desk teams can also create more efficient processes such as automated ticket routing and automated response systems, ensuring the best possible service for each employee.
Data analytics meets the service desk
Data and analytics have become the new global currency, revolutionizing the core of modern businesses by combining the power of robotic process automation (RPA), AI, and ML to glean meaningful insights across functions, including the service desk. Leveraging data and analytics at the service desk can help monitor usage patterns, identify areas for improvement, increase employee engagement, provide a more integrated and elevated employee experience, and bring greater employee satisfaction.
Using analytics to track employee service requests can help service desk staff better understand factors that are impacting resolution time, resource utilization, and overall efficiency. Data analysis is also critical for providing more personalized services because service desk agents can use employee request histories to better anticipate their needs.
To foster a data-driven culture that democratizes service desk analytics, companies can adopt the following features:
An experiential service desk
Ultimately, the service desk will evolve into an experience desk that maps employee journeys. Under an XLA-based approach, the outcome-based service desk will foster continuous improvement and help build a customized knowledge base with feedback accumulated from experienced professionals across touch points throughout the organization.
An experience-based service desk aims to offer employees an engaging, customized one-on-one experience, with seamless and agile resolution. Employees will get their questions answered even more directly and efficiently.
General Manager and Global Practice Head- Digital Workplace Services, iCORE-CIS, Wipro
Sidharth Mukherjee (Sid) is a dynamic leader and a true technology enthusiast at heart, with over 18 years of rich, holistic experience in driving digital sensitivity and cutting-edge cloud and infrastructure services transformations for Fortune 500 organizations.
Sid has a passion for delivering “what’s next” and technologically improving “what’s now” for enterprises while keeping a keen focus on employee experience and sustainable innovation. Currently, he is engrossed in harnessing the power of AI, cognition, blockchain, and analytics to create an intricate workspace metaverse aligned with the future of work. He is an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad and specializes in Business Strategy, IT and Management.