How are you tracking IT resources within your organization? If the answer is "I don't know", you're in the right place. In order to know what is and what isn't working within your organization's IT department, you need processes in place to track and analyze where your IT resources are being allocated for. Below, I've outlined some of the primary benefits of having ticketing practices and software in place.
Understand Where IT Resources are Going
In the world of IT, employees are often busy and overworked, but they don’t have the analytics to justify it. I've met with enterprise organizations whose IT staff is working with several hundred users who still don't have a system in place to track and verify where their IT resources are allocated.
Oftentimes, IT staff are immersed in day-to-day processes, focused on "keeping the lights on." When employees outside IT report issues or place requests without submitting tickets, these interruptions occupy IT resources without being tracked. Then, when IT staff report that they're working 60+ hours to keep the business moving along, three things happen:
- There's a lack of data to back up these claims
- IT cannot focus on larger, higher-order project
Keep IT Staff Accountable
Without reporting and analytics in place, bigger companies with internal IT staff have no means to qualify whether or not their IT department is overworked or understaffed. When proper ticketing processes are followed for all IT requests, there's no gray area when it comes to understanding how IT staff spend their time and what areas within the organization are requiring the most resources.
Know When and How You Need to Hire
Hiring new staff is one of the most cost- and resource-intensive decisions today's businesses and enterprise organizations take on. When an IT department is overworked, hiring additional staff can seem like a logical solution. However, the realities of whether or not that was the right decision often become clear after the hiring has occurred and the problem is not alleviated.
Common problems I've seen in organizations that hire new staff to alleviate stress on their internal IT department is they realize their need was not large enough to justify an additional, full-time employee, their need was a temporary increase in demand or that the new hire's skill set did not match the true need. Unfortunately, each of these comes to light after the hiring has occurred.
Justify Your Requests with Analytics
Thankfully, having appropriate ticketing practices and reporting software in place can alleviate most, if not all, of these issues by providing a clear picture of where your IT resources are going. Armed with this knowledge and data, expressing concern to decision-makers outside your department is much simpler because your accounts can be easily verified.
Not only will reporting software and analytics tip you off when additional IT staff are needed, they'll alert you to the special skills and area of focus that requires the most attention. You know as well as I do that help desk staff and project management staff require different areas of interest and expertise. Having the ticketing and software in place to verify which areas are requiring extra attention, can help with informed decision-making.
Tracking and Ticketing Adds Accountability
When your IT department is maxed out, there's likely something being neglected. Perhaps the influx of help desk tickets is all related to a single area or issue that could be solved through a higher-order solution like inadequate bandwidth or antivirus problems. While IT staff are wrapped up in day-to-day troubleshooting, they're not always afforded the time to assess the big picture. But tracking and ticketing software can bridge that issue.
Identifying issues and inefficiencies is second-nature with proper processes and analytics in place. They can make it easy to view all things IT and all the systems running the organization in plain sight. And with that level of vision, you can objectively ensure every decision that's made will be in the best interest of the organization as a whole.