"Trimming the fat" is a phrase many companies have become intimately familiar with. Taking a look at superfluous costs in an organization has become a necessity in an unsteady economic climate. Scott Gordon, the Chief Operating Officer at Dataprise, Inc., an IT support company for growing businesses, recently offered, in an IT Business Edge guest column, four ways reduce tech support and help desk costs.
1) Keep users informed.
Notify users, in advance, of any scheduled downtime or maintenance that will be occurring-even if it is outside of normal business hours. Additionally, be the first to let users know of any unforeseen downtime as soon as it occurs, which will save countless phone calls from coming in.
2) Outsource some (or all) of your tech support needs.
For many companies, paying a competitive salary, benefits and perks for an IT professional is often more than their budget can bear. Consider outsourcing some (or even all) of your tech support needs; it may lower costs. Outsourcing offers the flexibility to hire additional help when you need it, without having to pay for services when you don't need them.
3) Invest in regular maintenance.
Performing regular maintenance, such as updating anti-virus definitions, performing backups, and applying hotfixes and software patches may cost a little bit of time and money now, but will protect you from more catastrophic losses in the future.
4) Take advantage of automated tasks.
Streamline technical support processes by giving users access to help themselves. Consider adding an IT FAQ section to your business intranet, answering some of the questions your support department most commonly receives.
For more resources on cutting costs in support services and other departments, check out these tools in the Knowledge Network.