Communicate this: Knowledge-based solution solves IT helpdesk incidents “in one call”

The RightAnswers Unified Knowledge Suite offers users a “personalized,” knowledge-driven, self-service environment by capturing, combining, and enhancing an organization’s diverse knowledge, and then delivering it in a consistent and accessible format.
By Jim Fulcher, contributing editor (jimfulcher@comcast.net) April 10, 2009

Expectations for manufacturing IT support groups and helpdesks are expanding as incidents gain complexity. The common result—which most of us have experienced at one time or another—is a lengthy delay before an issue can be resolved.

Needed in the enterprise are tools to capture and share information and practices that ultimately can empower support groups. One such provider is RightAnswers , which offers knowledge-based self-service and support analyst solutions for the internal IT help desk. Its content, technology solutions, and value-added services improve the end-user experience in a helpdesk environment, increase support capacity, and reduce costs, says CEO Jeff Weinstein.

The RightAnswers Unified Knowledge Suite allows users to capture, combine, and enhance a company’s knowledge, and then deliver it to end users in a consistent and accessible format.

Terri Bos, service desk manager for office furniture maker Haworth, says use of the RightAnswers knowledge solutions suite and portal minimizes end-user incident time, and also allows helpdesk personnel to answer more calls each day.

Weinstein says RightAnswers clients often achieve a 20-percent to 50-percent reduction in support costs within the first year of implementing the suite.

“The results that our clients achieve with Unified Knowledge Suite demonstrate how the tools can change the way support organizations service their end users,” Weinstein says.

New components include Support Analyst and Self-Service Portal version 5.0, offering solution template support, expanded reporting, advanced search options, and multi-tenancy architecture. Users can quickly find answers using the RightAnswers portal, which includes gaining access to the knowledge of support analysts.

“It gives organizations a new platform to improve their helpdesk support operations’ performance, making them more knowledge-driven,” Weinstein says. “This version also reinforces key elements that are important to the client’s success—such as improving end-user adoption and delivering the most relevant content.”

Users say results are notable.

For one, Haworth , a Holland, Mich.-based manufacturer of office furniture and organic workspaces, selected a RightAnswers solution because, in the past, its help desk did not have the means to ensure consistent practices. Haworth looked to RightAnswers to establish a cost-effective approach that enables end users to—whenever possible—resolve their own issues, says Terri Bos, service desk manager for Haworth.

For Haworth, RightAnswers gives the Haworth service desk a knowledgebase and a unified methodology for conducting searches so support staff members are always able to provide the same—and best—answer to a question. That consistency also streamlines data analysis for trending and reporting, says Bos.

“We want end users to resolve their own issues so they can quickly resume working and minimize downtime,” says Bos, “but if they do need to call the help desk, our goal is first-call resolution. We can usually do that in the first call because help-desk employees now have easy access to a unified knowledge base. Use of the solution also probably saves us 10 or 15 minutes per call, so not only can we resolve an issue in one call, but that call is shorter now too. That minimizes end-user incident time, but it also allows helpdesk personnel to answer more calls each day.”