Tales From the Help Desk: Six Crazy Horror Stories

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2014-11-07

With the consumerization of IT, shadow IT and BYO-everything, end users are becoming more tech-savvy. That doesn't mean they rely less on the help desk to solve technology issues. In fact, end users rely more on the help desk than ever. To honor the venerable IT pros who battle help desk tickets day in and day out, IT performance management vendor SolarWinds recently asked its Thwack Community of IT pros to share some real-life tales of simple end-user-caused problems that appeared to be IT disasters, but weren't at all. As the stories in this slide show illustrate, managing an IT help desk can be challenging, but it doesn't have to be all bad. To improve help desk performance, here are a few tips from SolarWinds: First, keep a record of every user incident to help spot trends and solve future problems in advance.  Also, IT pros should consider providing users with a handy knowledgebase to help them solve easy, frequently encountered problems. This will not only help reduce the number of help desk tickets, but will allow IT to focus on more challenging problems. Additionally, survey users after their help desk interactions to see what was done right and what can be improved.

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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