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Case Study

Service Desk Case Study in the Education Industry

Client Profile

Auxis’ client, a prestigious private Boston, MA-based university, has extended its presence to 13 satellite campuses around the globe.

With a workforce of over 6,000 employees, the university is dedicated to providing high-quality education. Renowned as an academic leader, the university cultivates innovation, research, and diversity, influencing the future of various fields of study with over 36,000 undergraduate and graduate students.

Business Challenge

Lack of help desk service quality, consistent use of processes and 24/7 support

The university’s service desk plays a pivotal role in providing essential technical support to students and faculty across their locations, including troubleshooting network connectivity issues, password management, email support, remote access assistance, and software distribution. However, the university faced several challenges in delivering consistent service quality at a cost that fit their budget.

Challenges included:

  • Fluctuating service quality due to staffing by students: The university’s help desk, similar to several other universities, was staffed by student employees. This led to inconsistent service quality due to the temporary nature of student employment, as students primarily focused on their academic commitments. This often resulted in work assignments executed below the expected standard. The student employee turnover rate was also high, which limited the coverage and support the help desk could provide and diminished the overall quality of their support.
  • Employee Training: The lack of a properly structured training program meant that the expected end-user experience often fell short of expectations. The reliance on tribal knowledge and time needed to get new employees up to speed continued to diminish the opportunity to create a robust standardized operating procedure for employee training.
  • High Cost: Budget constraints compelled the university to seek an alternative to full-time hires on site in one of the most expensive job markets in the U.S. It was clear to university leadership that their commitment to providing high-quality service while adhering to budgetary constraints necessitated a strategic solution.
  • Continuous Support: These combined factors hindered the university’s ability to establish a standardized service structure and provide 24/7 support. This lack of around-the-clock support for their global locations was another leading factor for the inconsistency in their service desk support.

Solution & Approach

A proactive help desk with a high-performing, nearshore-based team

Enter Auxis.

Auxis, a leader in IT service management, quickly emerged as the university’s ideal choice. We aligned seamlessly with the client’s requirements, and leveraged our top nearshoring IT support team from Costa Rica, while focusing on staff augmentation and training.

With deep experience providing high-performing help desk support for a wealth of clients across industries, Auxis undertook a strategic approach to address the client’s service desk challenges, with the initial goal of creating a six-month pilot program that could scale with evolving requirements.

The deployment began with a dedicated team of experienced Level 1 agents during the “graveyard” overnight shift to determine the productivity of agents during periods with less need. This phased approach allowed for careful evaluation and performance monitoring during the initial six-month pilot.

Key change factors:

Dedicated Level 1 Agent Deployment

To address the inconsistency in service quality stemming from using student employees, Auxis introduced a dedicated team of highly experienced Level 1 agents to support current and past students and/or parents with accessing student accounts and necessary documents.

These agents bring a depth of knowledge and professionalism beyond what part-time student workers can provide, ensuring a standardized and reliable service experience. Some of the unique advantages the client got from working with our agents include our ITIL best practices, best-in-class tech, proactive approach (instead of a reactive help desk), deep experience streamlining and improving processes, optimized operational models, and clearly documented procedures for incident and escalation management. The pilot program goal was to create replicable service desk support for all of the client’s locations.

Around-the-Clock Service Coverage

To extend support beyond regular business hours, accommodating the diverse time zones of the client’s satellite locations, Auxis introduced strategically scheduled support to be available 24/7, ensuring continuous service coverage and adjusted support as the client’s needs changed.

Knowledge Base and Process Documentation

A crucial element of the solution involved meticulous documentation of processes and creation of a comprehensive knowledge base that empowers service desk agents with the necessary information and resources to efficiently resolve issues. Additionally, this documentation can be used to train future staff if expansion of services is needed. The emphasis on knowledge transfer was to ensure a consistent and reliable approach to problem-solving. 

Quality Assurance Implementation

To maintain a high standard of service, Auxis began collecting information from the client to monitor overall quality assurance. This involved regular evaluations of calls, chats, and tickets, providing scores and feedback to enhance agent performance. The implementation of quality control mechanisms aimed at minimizing errors ensured a consistently positive customer experience. 

Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) Process

A proactive approach to customer feedback was introduced through the implementation of a Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) process. CSAT is a metric used to measure the degree to which users are satisfied with the products, services, or support they receive. In this case, users were encouraged to provide feedback on their interactions, fostering a continuous feedback loop.  

Transparent and Trustworthy Business Practices

While many service desk solutions are characterized by “black box” operating models that provide little visibility into operations, Auxis ensured the client had full visibility and transparency into our business practices. For instance, Auxis ensured