Part 1 Järfälla Municipality– A helpful IT department in an operation facing major challenges

The municipality of Järfälla in Sweden has implemented a major internal change of IT. This has resulted in dissatisfaction among users. The IT department at the municipality of Järfälla has chosen to introduce Zero Level support in order to create a happier organisation and a more positive image for the IT department. I will be following their progress with the introduction of Zero Level support in a series of blogs. In the first one, I will be telling you all about the IT department’s targets and challenges.

I have interviewed two positive and enterprising people in the municipality’s IT department. Ingela Karlsson is a unit manager for support who has worked for the municipality of Järfälla for ten years. Carina Nyborg is an account manager and is responsible for training, information and identification of the needs of the operations in respect of IT and telephony. She has worked for the municipality for 25 years.

Streamlined IT organisation

Organization chart for Järfälla municipalityThe IT department is now made up of 16 people and includes an IT manager, a staff function and two units – Service and Support. The staff function is made up of three people, including the account manager. Seven people work in Service, which is responsible for the ordering of systems operation, infrastructure for IT workstations. Support is made up of five people and is responsible for providing user support on IT and telephony for some 9000 people within the operation.

The IT department was a lot larger a year ago. A process began in the autumn of 2012 which aimed to streamline the IT department on the basis of business benefits. At the end of the year, the IT department was reduced from 52 people to 19.

IT department’s targets and challenges

The operations’ initial contact (SPOC – Single Point of Contact) with the IT department is first line support.  A case management system (Easit), remote assistance (Microsoft) and web-based self service (ComAround) are used to support operations. The IT department also offers training for the operations in the form of instructor-led training courses and interactive guides which are largely based on ComAround’s guides and e-training courses.

The primary aim of the IT department is for at least 70% of staff to perceive the IT department as being accessible.

“User experiences are extremely important to us,” reckons Ingela Karlsson. “Being dealt with nicely, getting good answers and finding information and help with ease.”

Carina Nyborg and Ingela Karlsson at Järfälla municipality’s IT departmentIn earlier customer questionnaires, the IT department was not deemed to be accessible. The annual survey of managers shows that 30% felt that they did not receive indicative information, just 20% said that it was easy to reach the IT department, and 50% had had contact with the IT department. One likely reason for these low figures is a major change in the IT environment which took place in 2011/12. Computers, platforms and systems were replaced or upgraded to new versions.

“We have had a tough time at the IT department. We have encountered a lot of resistance during and after the major change to the IT environment. We have received a lot of complaints,” says Carina Nyborg. “Our aim is to reverse this trend so that our users within the municipality’s operations feel that they are getting the support and information they need in respect of IT and telephony issues.”

“One of the areas for improvement will involve introducing Zero Level support,” says Ingela.

Zero Level support is the stage before first line and means that operations can receive answers to their questions via web-based self service, no matter what the time of day.

In my next blog, I will be describing how the municipality of Järfälla is working with web-based self service at the moment.

By all means let me know about your IT department. Do you face the same challenges?

Therese Walve, Marketing Manager, ComAround

Related links:

whitepaper: Resolve more support cases with a clear self-service strategy

Part 2 Järfälla Municipality – Web-based self service in the public sector

Part 3 Järfälla Municipality – Reasons and expectations for Zero Level support

Part 4 Järfälla Municipality: Measures and plans for solving more cases in Zero Level support

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