SupportWorld

SupportWorld, Jan/Feb 2013

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McAfee's antivirus program, but we also install Computrace, which enables us to recover a lost or stolen laptop. Students actually have access to a dedicated wireless network, with access restrictions based on port address. They can use this network to access their email and print resources through Pharos, Blackboard, and other services. In terms of device protection, we provide students with cost-effective solutions like McAfee antivirus and Brigadoon Software's PCPhone Home and MacPhone Home. The Shape of Support at UMASS Boston on-demand online console allows the help desk to connect to a computer or smartphone remotely without installing software on the remote machine. With the user's permission, our staff can then take control of the user's device to quickly configure, diagnose, repair, and train. Benefits for Users, Technicians, and the Bottom Line Running an Efficient Help Desk Using Remote Support Tools As the cloud and mobile devices come together, we've begun to provide support in new and different ways, and our team has had to learn new skills and adopt new tools. When people have a problem, they expect to be able to chat with someone on the help desk and they expect a quick answer. With a robust online and distance learning program that relies on UMASS Boston's technology, remote support has taken center stage in our multidevice, multichannel strategy, all with an eye toward the constraints of security and cost. When we started evaluating remote support options, we initially felt that the free version that Windows offers was adequate to support faculty and staff. However, as our environment became more complex, we recognized that we needed a different solution, preferably a cloud-based tool to help eliminate the need to use staff resources to maintain, patch, or update the server. Our other top requirements included: • Cross-platform support (Mac and PC) • Agent multitasking (i.e., the capability for an agent to work on multiple tickets/multiple sessions at the same time) • Seamless transfer/escalation • Full session transcripts (print and electronic) recording the work done to resolve the incident The key to our success in this open, rapidly changing environment was recognizing that we needed to be adaptable and flexible, maintain data security, provide a 24×7 support culture, and use tools that can remotely diagnose, configure, and troubleshoot a variety of devices. Since adopting LogMeIn Rescue, we've realized a number of benefits, including reduced call handling times, increased first call resolution, decreased operational expenses, and increased user satisfaction. More specifically, we've been able to support a 22-percent increase in help desk call volume without needing to add support staff and we've seen a 30-percent increase in first call resolution. In addition, we have been able to reduce deskside visits and improve the level of their tier 2 support, again without having to add staff. .................................. Going forward, any new service we roll out must be in the cloud: Microsoft 365 (faculty/staff emails), iTunes (on-demand access to hosted and managed content like classroom capture and recorded lectures), Web 2.0 (wikis and blogs), etc. By using LogMeIn Rescue and various administration tools to manage report support, UMASS Boston has been able to automate functions, reduce the day-to-day workload of the technology staff, and improve the user experience and bottom line. That's a win-win-win: for the end users, the technicians, and the university. About the Author • Desktop sharing to facilitate "how-to" training • Chat capabilities • The ability to reboot a system remotely without needing to authenticate again In the end, we decided that LogMeIn Rescue was the solution that was the best fit for our requirements. Rescue enables the help desk to more effectively diagnose and resolve technical issues, and the | Apurva Mehta is the director of client services and educational technologies at the University of Massachusetts, Boston campus. He is responsible for the help desk and desktop support, instructional support, the computer labs, classroom technology, the faculty support center, and the instructional technology center. www.ThinkHDI.com A Professional Journal for the Technical Service and Support Community 33

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