What we don't talk about in IT workflows

Group of coworkers gathered in a circle talking about how to improve IT workflows


#GoToGetsIT: This article is part of an ongoing series from GoTo’s thought leaders on the frontlines: Our Solutions Consultants deeply understand our customers’ unique challenges and connect the right solutions to meet their goals using GoTo technology. Here, they share their industry knowledge on what it takes to help businesses everywhere thrive in a remote or hybrid world.

For many of us who’ve worked helpdesk and support roles, we wear it as a badge of honor. Technical problem solving remains one of the most rewarding and under-appreciated fields someone can spend time in, and a culture emerges around it. We’re fiercely proud of the work we do, and rightfully so. When things break, we fix them, and what is more valuable than that?

However, this confidence in our work can present some unique challenges. If you’ve been under a stack of tickets and imposing deadlines, odds are you’ve also vented to a co-worker about repeat problems that keep you from getting vital work done, before you tolerate them and move on. Every IT department has processes and roadblocks, but these can hide massive inefficiencies under them.

A personal anecdote

At my previous role, I worked helpdesk at a local community college. Each day was challenging, rewarding, and frustrating, usually in equal measure. Our IT department was small, well-knit, and full of driven people doing excellent work, but there were some major problems. Every shift was defined by our IT tools (or lack thereof) and how this affected our workflow, oftentimes for the worse.

My workdays were defined by walking. The campus was big, a solid 20 minutes by foot from one side to another, which felt farther if I needed to bring software or hardware with me. Sometimes, I’d spend my morning marching to one side of the campus, only to be pulled in the opposite direction a half-hour later. Other times, poor documentation would mean that I lacked the appropriate IT software tools, of course only finding this out once I had made the trek to my destination. Back and forth, all the time.

For a while, I was grateful to get steps in, but it eventually occurred to me – I was spending hours doing this and it was delaying my ability to get my job done. I chatted with coworkers about it and found out I wasn’t alone. It was the norm. Combined with slow software tools, inconsistent access, and unclear guidelines, we were spending hours and hours of productive time on essentially nothing. What’s more, the tools we used had us on a narrow upgrade path, with the formidable challenge of hosting it on our own on top of everything else.

How do we fix these IT workflow inefficiencies?

If you sat down with your whole team, and seriously discussed it, could there be similar blocks in your day to day? Consider:

  • Is legacy software slowing your processes?
  • Are multiple logins and disparate tools a barrier to quick resolutions and agent satisfaction?
  • Are you and your team able to efficiently get to the infrastructure you need? Don’t forget about physical devices your end users might be using.
  • Are technicians finding themselves without the proper tools?
  • Is your team solving the same issues day after day?
  • Are they having a hard time scheduling a good time to support end users?
  • Are you putting out fires every day, fielding one-off, ad-hoc requests?

After some discussion, it may become clear that you really need tools like:

Of course, acknowledging this is only part of it, implementing a fix is another. Sometimes, the simplest solution is to be honest that what you already have is not ideal, and to move on. Ultimately, my helpdesk team decided to ditch the existing infrastructure, freeing us to adopt newer, more agile solutions to our problems.

In the hustle and bustle of day-to-day IT work, it can be hard to find time for long term fixes. It’s worth asking though, what do we leave on the table when we settle for “just getting by”? If you can relate to the story above, it might be more than you think.

A simple, consolidated IT solution

Speaking of newer, more agile solutions to IT workflow problems, GoTo Resolve is an all-in-one IT solution that combines remote monitoring and management, remote access, remote support, and helpdesk software that includes all the tools an agent needs to resolve issues on a single interface. Check it out today!

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