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ITIL :: View topic - How many Service Desk Staff and first line resolution?
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How many Service Desk Staff and first line resolution?
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Proco2020
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 9:30 pm    Post subject: How many Service Desk Staff and first line resolution? Reply with quote

Hi,

New here so be gentle!

I think this has been covered in various places on the forum but not really found an answer.

If you have an average of 1300 Service Requests and Incidents raised per month, how many Service Desk (first line) operatives would you expect to cover a 10 hour shift (8am to 6pm)

The second question is what percentage of first line fixes (not first time fixes) would you expect there to be e.g. calls not requiring a technical escalation.

I'm sorry if this has been covered many times before and I look forward to your answers.
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Diarmid
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Proco,

The reason you haven't found an answer here is because both questions are unanswerable.

for the first one:

how long does each call take to service?
how much break time does each operator need?
how much time do operators have to put in to tasks other than answering calls?
what is the arrival distribution of calls (e.g. are there periods when no calls arrive?
just some of the questions that need to be answered first.

for the second one:

that entirely depends on what percentage of calls are for actions within the technical capacity of your first line staff and on the sophistication/skills/knowledge of your users. Upgrade the skills and knowledge of the staff and expect an increase in first line fix. Decrease it and expect a downturn. Change your services so that users are more/less sophisticated and the types of call will change.

So it should increase over time as users and support staff become more experienced/knowledgeable, but then it will drop when you introduce new services/users/staff.
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UKVIKING
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diarmid has it down right

In addition, the number of staff also depends on the relevant labour laws in your country

I think here in the UK as a health & Safety issue, there must be at least 2 people on shift.

In addition, what type of calls are coming in and by what method determine the load

how many calls are escalated outside of the service desk to the 2nd line support

If you have the SD / call centre or NOC do both initial call creation and first line support, then there needs to be more staff than if the staff were just doing the inital call set up and initial support. basically because they spend more time on the call
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UrgentJensen
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would suggest five, it's a good number. Better than four.

UJ
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Diarmid
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 2:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shirley it is rather an odd number?

Besides, when one is on holiday, who would go in goal?

Oh yes. That is another consideration to how many: do you allow holidays and/or other absence?
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BorisBear
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A helpful reply would be perhaps someone recanting their experiencing of how they implemented this, what reasoning they used and what lessons they learned.

I agree with the "it depends" answer but if someone could contribute a bit more in the way of personal experience it would help the person who raised this post.
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Diarmid
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boris,

unless such an account gave a lot of background as to the nature of the services, the service providers, the customers and the users then it is more likely to be misleading. Especially to someone who demonstrates a limited understanding of the basics of quantifying service provision.

The only way to determine how much resource is needed is to measure, analyse and project under cost constraints and risk considerations.

The only way to establish targets for first line fix is to measure, analyse and project under cost constraints and risk considerations.

Anecdotal "data" can seriously damage your services.
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UrgentJensen
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree Diarmid,

Personally I have structured more than one Desk in my life and feel I could help most people in this area.

It really helps if posters put a little thought into their questions. Still, you can't enforce this very easily at the moment.

UJ
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BorisBear
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UrgentJensen wrote:
I agree Diarmid,

Personally I have structured more than one Desk in my life and feel I could help most people in this area.

It really helps if posters put a little thought into their questions. Still, you can't enforce this very easily at the moment.

UJ



.....and so speaking as someone who has structured more that one desk in your life how did you do it?
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Diarmid
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BorisBear wrote:

.....and so speaking as someone who has structured more that one desk in your life how did you do it?


He's got a job. I'll do it cheaper Smile
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BorisBear
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diarmid wrote:
BorisBear wrote:

.....and so speaking as someone who has structured more that one desk in your life how did you do it?


He's got a job. I'll do it cheaper Smile



Fair point. Very Happy

There isn't a short answer to this I know but a few practical pointers from those in the know might help break the task down into manageable chunks.. Personally I think the answers on this forum can be a bit too much like reading the ITIL books and I think even ITIL itself steers us away from this in that the examinations encourage individuals to talk about their own experience and not just what it says in the book.

Not many of us work in organisations where management commitment to 'doing ITIL' (someone will pick me up on this) is in place, along with resources, finance, cooperating colleagues and supportive customers and so sometime pragmatic experience based answers are the order of the day.
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UrgentJensen
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boris,

I did it with a methodology you have to pay me for and that's the point.

People come on here expecting free consultancy when in reality it's just a discussion forum. On top of that posters often give very minimal scope to their questions and it becomes a "how long is a piece of string?" answer.

So it's better to tease them into thinking about scope and requirements first.

UJ
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UKVIKING
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BorisBear

UJ has it right

If a poster wants an analysis of how many people should man their service desk, I will provide the analyis and recommendations for a fee - usually a month's work (20 days work at my Hourly / Daily Rate or a multiple (0.5 to 3 or more).

I would need all sorts of information from the poster - propriatary and for which I will sign a NDA. Then I will produce the analysis and give the report with my invoice

Here, people ask opinions, advice etc. I have no legal obligation or responsibility associated w/ giving opinions and advice about how / where / etc to do things.

If the Poster asking the question about how to staff his Service desk and he is the Service Desk manager, then his boss IMNSHO has chosen a poor candidate for the SD Manager because obviously the poster is not fit for purpose for that role

If the poster asked this forum.. i am using this process to determine my staffing... he is trying to confirm whether his methodology is ok. Good mgmt

If the poster asked this forum - how many people should be in the SD... bad manager.

because each SD is unique so the answer is.. IT DEPENDS

None of us are paid here to post answers/questions
None of us receive any compensation - other than see our own words online

We post our opinions and comments freely....

Whether you agree with the content, level of quality, style etc or not... i could not care less - as long as I dont violate basic courtesy rules

comment on the post not the poster
dont make it personal
have fun
confusion is an alternate way to enlightenment

not necessary in that order
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UrgentJensen
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boris, fair point about tips and general steers to get people started, but most of the time this could just involve answers with two words:

Requirements.
Scope.

Most of the time this seems to be all that's needed to be said.

To use another analogy for this forum: if it were about cars you would see posts about which is the best etc, but you wouldn't expect to see someone asking for someone else to go to their house and fix their motor.

Viking well put, almost coherant today, you cutting down on the pre-noon whisky? Or should I say Whishky? Hehe. Sorry old fella.
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BorisBear
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2008 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good debate.

Fair do's........some of you boys get paid to provide consultancy and so you aint gonna give it out for free. I just want to make it clear that I don't disagree with any of the points you have made but they don't help the person who asked the original question any more than reading the ITIL books would.

If someone out there who has empathy with the originator of this post would like to share the benefit of their experience gratis, then I'm sure it would add to the discussion.
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