Best-practice support processes need to be well defined, repeatable and compliant with industry standards like CMM and ITIL. Designing and implementing them is hard work. But if you stick with it, the dividends in reduced operational costs as well as improved quality and customer satisfaction are well worth the effort. It has been my experience that where defined, repeatable processes and metrics are implemented, a savings of 30% to 50% in IT support costs is likely. In order to achieve these savings, processes must formally document the answers to the following questions:
- What type of work is being done?
- How can the same type of work be done with a high degree of repeatability?
- Who is doing the work? What are their specific roles? Who is responsible?
- What supporting documents or other deliverables are required as part of each task?
- How do we know that what was requested was delivered?
- How do we define quality in work products produced?
- How do we capture data on all work performed and the people who do that work?
- How do we measure performance, productivity, quality and customer satisfaction within all work processes, products or services?
These last questions are particularly crucial. Embedded within any good support process must be the ability to capture and report operational data that provides feedback on how the processes and resources are performing.
With questions like these as your framework and the 25 truths of IT support as guidelines, you’ll avoid missteps as you build your support processes.