By Ruben J. Franzen, president, TOPdesk US.
With only 115 people working as part of the central IT and technology support teams, the University of Memphis requires careful management to provide the highest level of support to its substantial customer base.
Sue Hull-Toye leads the public-facing operations of the division. Until recently, her teams relied upon several disconnected systems to perform ticket tracking, case review, user support, and data collection. The result was a clunky process that provided little benefit to students or employees.
The situation required change.
Taking on the multitude of disparate technologies
Before changing solutions, the university employed multiple disparate, and somewhat ineffective, technologies cobbled together to power the service desk.
By attempting to integrate multiple, unrelated tools, IT actually outsmarted itself and created barriers of complexity. “We invested heavily in technology and further modified what we had,” says Hull-Toye. “We built a Swiss watch when a sundial would have been adequate,” said Robert Johnson, associate CIO, “and doing so created as much of an internal burden as it was supposed to solve.”
Moreover, the university’s service desk team worked much harder than necessary, especially on tasks that should have been simple – all because of the solutions employed to manage them. “We spent too much money and time ‘solving’ some problems while inadvertently creating more problems than we solved,” explains Hull-Toye.
Johnson said that the most demanding challenges received the least attention because of the work required to manage these tasks, tickets, and assets across multiple systems.
Data reporting suffered tremendously.
When the university’s CIO asked IT directors to review current information about ticket management, service requests, and response rates, they discovered correlated, traceable data was hard to come by.