“We’re born to be players not pawns” (Daniel Pink in his book: Drive). I’m sure that this statement resonates with you as an employee of an organization whether that is dealing with your line manager, your HR or senior management team. You want engagement, and the ability to act autonomously, right?
So it should not be a huge leap to think that users of IT have a similar outlook of the organization including their relationship with IT. But hold on you say, we regularly send out surveys to our customers of IT and that’s great for some employees. But think about how your users have changed over time, think about your sons and daughters who will be the next generation. How many of you have watched a group teenagers together recently, they are texting and creating “selfie” photos, more often than not to send to the person standing two foot a way. They are the Millennials or the digital natives who are accustomed to immediacy. They are the “here and now” generation where communication through social platforms, chat or texting is the norm and surveys would be considered by this group as static and un-engaging so just may not cut it.
Further to this did you know that employee engagement is becoming a hot topic in enterprise organizations for HR teams. It’s been widely demonstrated that there is direct correlation between engagement and satisfaction as well as employee retention and increased company profitability. Take a look at this Gallup survey “The State of the American Workplace”
These lessons can be equally applied to IT. It’s always interesting listening and comparing service desk user stories. Why is one service desk more successful than another in satisfying their end user customers? It seems that those that are finding success are taking that next step and actively engaging with their customers.
Voice of the Customer is something that is becoming main stream for outbound marketing to ensure they understand the customers they service but Voice of the User is something you and your IT organizations should consider to understand the new needs and environment of your users. However one caveat to this is that rather than thinking about it as a phase or project in your ITSM journey, it needs to be incorporated as part of the natural way of working so that it doesn’t become a done once and forgotten initiative which really does not build true engagement.
Now engagement is more than just executing procedures and standards to get improve first contact resolution for an individual. Engagement is about stepping outside of the normal command and control mentality. Walking the organizational floor with a tablet device connected to the service desk and asking who has an IT issue, setting up a walk up IT support bar, allowing employees to chat online with IT staff perhaps sending in “selfie” pictures of their IT screens or collaborate online with peers to fix their issues, having IT staff regularly sitting and working amongst their end user customers to engage first hand and see how they operate and at the same time logging issues back to the service desk from where they are sitting. All of these types of engagement are activities that I’ve heard some service desks starting to turn to or have even implemented to aid their drive for end user satisfaction.
So why not think about how you could engage and incorporate voice of the user strategies to aid customer satisfaction. Who knows once you are up and running you might even be able to advise your Senior Management team on how to employ a voice of the employee strategy for HR and improve the organizations bottom line.
It’s time to see your world from a different perspective –that of the user.