Part 4: Resolve more cases with self-service – the importance of support from management

The management staff constitutes an important tool for changing behavior in an organization. Include them early in the process, use best practices, references and provide prompt feedback on progress.

A happy womenThe blog article series is about the service desk’s challenges in implementing web-based self-service for users, in other words changing users’ behavior from routinely calling staffed support to searching for answers themselves in the self-service system. It is not just the characteristics of the actual change that affect resistance; where the change is initiated is also of major importance.

Management staff are important ambassadors

Management personnel are important ambassadors for successfully implementing web-based self-service and Zero Level support in an organization. Few things have such a negative effect on changes as negative and skeptical leaders. Without supportive management there is a risk that the change process among the users will take more time, or in the worst event, come to a complete stop.

A team of leaders is needed that has sufficient status and power in the organization to carry out the change. The team should consist of management personnel from different levels to have the greatest possible credibility. They must be close-knit and stand united behind the common goal and strategy. Work with change is much easier if many managers, not just those in the IT and support department, are convincing about the support method, believe in it and become ambassadors for change by taking responsibility for gaining acceptance among their staffs.

Include management early in the process

Include management staff early in the process. If they feel they have had the opportunity to influence and participate in the change at an early stage, the chances increase of them becoming good ambassadors. Show concrete benefits based on best practices and highlight references.

Ask each manager to inform his or her department about the self-service system before the launch. Prepare an information kit that can be easily used as support and assistance.

Provide prompt feedback on progress

Work with change takes time. For management personnel to continue to feel secure regarding the investment in a self-service system and Zero Level support strategy, and to persist in influencing employees in the right direction, it is important to promptly provide feedback on progress and show short-term gains. Keep in mind that there is almost always some positive change (key figure) that can be showcased even if the entire investment has not yet reached the break-even point.

As a rule we must actively create and communicate short-term successes, and not just wait until they reveal themselves. To quickly show strong results it’s good to conduct a limited pilot project before launch of the entire system, or to prepare a report shortly after the launch that shows progress and potential.

Thanks for reading my article. If you whant to read more in this area, read the whitepaper resolve more support cases with a clear self-service strategy

Therese Walve, Marketing Manager, Comaround

Related links:

Whitepaper: The effects of Self Service at a global enterprise

Part 1: Resolve more support cases with self service – The biggest challenge for Service Desk

Part 2: Resolve more cases with self service – support strategy and goals as fundamental control instruments

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