Sometimes the need for a help desk manager is obvious: Tickets don't receive responses for weeks or customers are complaining.
But If you're not sure there’s an immediate need, check out these four signs to confirm that you need to hire a help desk manager sooner than later:
- Longer resolution times. The trouble with backlogs is that they're difficult to reverse. And of course, your company can't stop using technology for an indefinite period while IT catches up. This amounts to a ticket fulfillment effort that's basically treading water. As resolution times get longer, the whole system becomes more complex, and there is greater risk that tickets may be filed incorrectly, lost or mistakenly marked as resolved issues. More oversight of the help desk is necessary just to keep everything functioning smoothly and channeled properly.
- Device proliferation and complexity. More endpoints equal more complexity. Gone are the days when employees received standard-issue (and easier to support and secure) technology equipment. Today, the average person carries 2.9 devices — laptops, smartphones, tablets and more. Support requests from mobile and remote workers are forcing IT to diagnose problems and prescribe solutions over the phone that they would normally do in person. Help desks need to be able to provide real-time support in this dynamic environment; a help desk manager can help keep tickets organized and prioritized.
- Changing roles for IT. Organizations expect IT teams to do a lot more for the business than they used to. At the same time, because resources are often limited, they also have to ensure they use their tech talent in the best way. A help desk manager is a specialist who can take control of the help desk so technology personnel don't have to be bogged down with help desk requests when the business needs them to focus on other priorities.
- Need for business efficiency. Even as enterprise environments grow, businesses are under more pressure than ever to cut costs, stretch resources and be ruthlessly efficient. Broken machines and still-open tickets cause productivity issues that can extend much further than the help desk. A help desk manager can expedite comprehensive assistance faster. This translates to the organization getting the most from its technology investments, helping it to maintain its competitive advantage.
Skills and abilities to look for in a help desk manager
According to the Robert Half Technology Salary Guide, a help desk manager blends technical experience with interpersonal and leadership skills to oversee daily operations, manage staff and evaluate the speed and efficacy of IT ticket responses. Top candidates should have at least five years of information systems support experience, and spent even more time in a managerial position.
With a dedicated help desk manager in place, your organization can help to ensure your employees are never sidelined by a tech issue for long, and key IT resources are dedicated to the right business priorities at any given time. The help desk manager also will play a critical role in the technical support center of the future, which is already taking shape today.
This post has been updated to reflect more current information.