New IT Service Request System Available To Campus Community

More stories from Rachel Salvetti

The IT department launched a new service request system this summer to allow users to receive IT assistance more easily.

The new system replaced an older system that, according to Royce Robertson the Director of Academic Technology, was no longer adequate for the technology needs of the college. “We needed a more modern tool that had the ability for … students, staff, and faculty to get answers to common problems more easily,” explained Robertson. The new system enables students and faculty members to solve problems on their own, or when the help desk is closed by searching a built-in knowledge base and consulting self- help guides.

Unlike the old system which simply asked users to describe their problem, the new menu contains a breakdown by request type and software issues, with links to resources that can help the student or faculty member determine what the difficulty is and how to solve it on their own. The IT staff encourages all members of the community to familiarize themselves with this knowledge base now before they have a problem.

“A lot of people want to self-serve; they want to solve the issue if they can,” said Ryan Bouchard, Service Desk Coordinator. “If they do need to call they’ve looked at these guides, and it’s because they do really have a complex or deeper issue.” The new system allows IT to gather more detailed information the first time they are contacted about a problem and solve the issue faster. “It makes it a lot easier to reach out to people and get back to them,” said Maeghan Rodd, a staff member at the IT Service Desk. Now users can receive real-time notifications from IT regarding problems and reply to the notifications by emailing staff directly.

The new system was available for use on August 8, after many hours of work by Bouchard and the IT staff. The cost of maintaining the new system is negligible, less than 10% more than the cost of the old system, the real cost being the work time needed to set up the new system, according to Robertson and Bouchard. “We believe the time spent [working on it] will actually save us time in the end,” Robertson said. “In the prior system, we were spending more time getting information out of the system after the fact to learn.”

According to the IT staff, the new system allows them to improve customer service overall by gathering more sophisticated and detailed information that can be used to track problems and make more informed decisions. The staff can also prioritize requests according to the severity of the problem and the number of people affected. Now the IT staff can use an app to log problems while working in the field instead of having to wait until returning to the office, allowing them to begin solving issues immediately.

Feedback has been positive in surveys users completed after receiving assistance, explained Bouchard, who reviews the completed surveys daily. Robertson and Bouchard encourage users to be patient with the change and help IT improve customer service by communicating what they observe regarding the new system. “What’s important is that people can operate that technology; they can teach; they can learn; they can perform their duties as a student and as a faculty and staff member,” Bouchard said.