The secret to a smooth helpdesk experience

There’s no such thing as a “good” IT call—every call starts with a problem somewhere down the line, but that doesn’t mean your helpdesk experience needs to be an unpleasant one.

One of Newmind Group’s core values is “communicate comfortably, responsibly, and with care,” and helpdesk is one of the most important places to exhibit that. As far as channels, helpdesk clients can reach us via phone, email, or chat messaging through a portal we have in place (we even stay in touch on social)—needless to say, communication defines the job!

Some users really love our chat feature and rarely make a touch by phone or email. Others will call on the phone, while some would rather submit a ticket for their issue and check-in at their leisure. So what can we do to help satisfy every type of user?

Keep it human

I try to approach every situation not on a technical level, but more of a personal communication level—it kind of softens the differences there may be in technical understanding. If I get on a call and assume I need to “dumb things down,” and the caller is, in fact, very knowledgable, then I end up sounding like I’m spelling out the ABC’s for them! If I’m being too technical and they need the ABC’s, then I’ll either frustrate them, or they won’t be responsive because they aren’t keeping up.

The best approach I’ve found is foregoing the technical side of it—there’s obviously a technical problem that needs to be addressed, but connecting with a person on a human level makes it a deeper experience for both parties. Once you’re at that stage, you can let them breach the issue at hand, and feel out their technical expertise that way, so no one gets left behind.

A bit about vulnerability

The human connectivity aspect is one that really sticks with me! How do we maintain that connection with people? I took my approach from a TED talk called On Vulnerability, and I’ve read about it elsewhere online—it’s about sharing what Brene Brown refers to as “secrets.”

It doesn’t have to be something intimate or something you’d only share with your doctor (haha)—but say, you love a particular type of coffee: share that! You want to stay on point, obviously, but opening up about how we just got a new pinball machine, for instance—telling them I’m excited to see people playing in the office—that starts building a level of trust, or a the very least a bit of rapport. And the best part: we can engage more like friends, than this strictly clinical relationship! It makes work more fun.

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