IT support staff recovering from busy summer, with 67% seeing increased workloads thanks to lost devices and remote holiday working
Summer support requests range from being asked to sort out satnavs and changing a lightbulb to retrieving holiday snaps from broken hard drives
Chessington, Surrey, 5th September 2017 - While summer might have been the holiday season for many people, the rise of mobile devices and remote working is putting an increasing strain on IT service desks, according to research from Sunrise Software, a leading supplier of IT service management (ITSM) solutions. 67% of respondents in the Sunrise Mobile and Summer Service Desk Survey 2017 said their workloads had increased since the widespread adoption of mobile devices, with 27% saying it had increased by a quarter or more.
The biggest holiday issues mentioned were requests to fix or replace lost/damaged equipment, cited by 70% of people, and security breaches (30%). However, service desks also reported more unusual requests including replacing a mobile phone shredded in a lawn mower, being asked to drive 110 miles to demonstrate how a satnav worked, changing a lightbulb and retrieving a director’s holiday snaps from a crashed hard drive.
According to the research, the rise of mobile devices at work is having a major impact on support desks. 60% of IT service staff complain that their resources are really stretched and that they can’t cope – and this is having a knock on effect on scheduled activities. 93% say they now end up doing upgrades at weekends or out of hours due to pressures on their time.
However, on the positive side the majority (60%) now believe that they are better understood and appreciated by their colleagues compared to five years ago, showing the vital importance of IT support to business today. At the same time 93% say the rest of the business is now more demanding, increasing the pressure to deliver.
According to 63% of IT service desk staff, the biggest change that would improve their lives is increased automation and greater use of self-service to help users solve their own problems. The second most popular was banning shadow IT (software bought and downloaded by individuals and departments), which 17% of staff were in favour of. This was followed by mobile access for support desk staff (13%). Perhaps recognising that the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend is now unstoppable, just 7% wanted companies to ban personal smartphones and tablets from work.
“The summer is swiftly becoming the busiest time of the year for IT support staff, as they struggle to cope with lost devices and security breaches caused by employees taking work smartphones, tablets and PCs with them on holiday, ” said Geoff Rees, Sales Director, Sunrise Software. “And from the more unusual requests they receive, it seems that many users view the service desk as their personal technology gurus, adding to their workloads and meaning they continually go above and beyond the call of duty to keep employees happy.”
The Sunrise Mobile and Summer Service Desk Survey 2017 polled over 300 IT service desk staff online in August 2017. Further examples of random and unusual requests shared by respondents can be found in this blog post.