Sally Smith is the coordinator of the computer support center at Technology University. Her staff is responsible for supporting a user community that consists of approximately 2000 faculty and staff members. There are currently 6 full time support positions in the technology staff and 3 full time staff members and 3 part time student assistants working at the help desk.Sally recently conducted a user satisfaction survey to learn how the faculty and staff at Technology University feel about the quality of the support provided. Sally was not happy about some of the responses to the survey. Here are a few of the comments that she was willing to share with the committee of faculty, staff and support representatives brought together to make suggestions about improving the system:
“I am an advanced computer user. I know quite a bit about my computer and I am willing to help my colleagues. I don’t mind answering questions, however, I cannot take time out to help everyone in my area. My colleagues would rather ask me questions than call the help desk”
“The help desk runs smoothly when the coordinator is in the help desk area or when there is a full time staff member available. When they are out of the office many of the help questions are answered incorrectly.”
“The software manuals are locked in the office of a full time staff member. Whenever I want to have access to a software manual I have to track down this person to sign out the manual I would like to use. Why can’t the documentation be made available through the help desk staff?”
If you were a member of this committee, what advice would you give Sally concerning the training and assistance of staff members? What support issues have been raised? What are some other ways Sally could address the issues? Are some alternatives more expensive than others?
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