The IT Service & Support Awards take place every Spring in Birmingham, UK to celebrate all that is great about the global IT service industry. These awards are the only one’s of their kind to recognise and reward the shining stars of the global IT service industry; to highlight and showcase those who are going above and beyond to achieve the incredible and offer something truly inspirational for their customers.
Here we interview the team at Midlands based law firm Browne Jacobson LLP – winners of the Best Small Service Desk Award 2017 – a highly contested category featuring some truly inspirational service desks. The finalists in this category included Keele University and NBC Universal.
What made the Browne Jacobson team enter the awards?
Over the previous year, Browne Jacobson had undergone significant change, including the introduction of new IT systems and new ways of working as a result of significant business growth. We’re now supporting more IT systems, processes and people than ever before, resulting in an unprecedented increase in call volumes to our team. With the team remaining at the same resource levels as in previous years, this had resulted in greater demand for the use of our IT services. Despite all of this, we continued to retain a BJ fan index (net promoter score) of over 90%, with exceptional feedback from lawyers and support members from across the firm.
Importantly we were nominated for, and won, our firm’s internal exceptional client service (ECS) award on 3 occasions with a further nomination in the last 7 months. These awards are judged by a panel of senior people from across the firm. It meant so much to our team to extend this recognition beyond our internal colleagues with external recognition from the Service Desk Institute for being the best at what we do. Our people are the first in line to manage frustrations when their colleague’s “IT” isn’t working, this award makes all of their hard work, commitment and dedication so worthwhile.
What was the best part of the awards process?
This is a difficult question to answer because the whole process was awesome. It was a great development opportunity for our service desk team, empowering them to take ownership of the initial awards submission paper, input and assist in the delivery of our final presentation ‘why we should win’ to the judging panel.
If we had to pick one particular moment, then this would have to be when we found out about being shortlisted. The team were so excited and wanted to share this news with the firm as soon as we were informed. It took five minutes for us to share this news on our communications screen across all of our offices!
In the last 12 months, what has been the most successful initiative your team has implemented to help your business improve its performance?
To help prioritise incidents and enable better visibility on support calls raised by our internal clients, our team created and implemented a ‘self-service portal’ firm-wide. Our portal encourages clients to log their own incidents and service requests online, all tickets are then automatically opened on our SCSM software (IT service management system). Clients are able to see, real time, what’s happening with their incident, who has been assigned to deal with it and the priority assigned to it. As well as this the team also introduced a process for ‘Service requests’, this allows clients to raise a request for equipment or software. Built into the workflows are approval steps that require a manager’s sign off, e.g. requesting a new iPhone. In this instance, once a client raises a service request via the portal, a notification is sent to their manager for approval, they will receive either Browne Jacobson LLP – case study ‘Small IT service desk of the year’ an email or a notification will be on the portal. Once the service request has been authorised it is in the queue for processing. This has improved our SLA for the provision of hardware/software, more importantly it has helped to reduce calls to 123, allowing the team to focus on high priority incidents (e.g. unable to work remotely).
Which aspect of your service do you believe your customers appreciate the most and why?
Our exceptional client service is what they appreciate the most. Nothing is too much trouble when it comes to our clients and going the extra mile is to be expected. Our team focuses on quality and not targets! Ensuring our clients are happy is key. They know that they can expect our 123 team to work late when they need our support the most, they can also expect home visits when requested. We also provide dedicated support for client seminars/completions, those times when our lawyers need specialist IT support for their own external clients. Client service is the heart of everything that we do and are about. Our clients would definitely agree with this.
What one thing do you think really makes you stand out as a service organisation?
The people within our service desk team make us stand out. Our people are enthusiastic, passionate, friendly and helpful. We have a culture at Browne Jacobson and typically when we are recruiting we focus on whether they are the right person and fit for our team rather than if they have the right skills (IT skills we can train). Over the years we have implemented development frameworks for work experience and students who wish to pursue a career in IT; the people that have spent time on our service desk never want to leave us.
How are you preparing to evolve your service desk over the next few years? Please share your most exciting plan with us!
Our desk will evolve with the provision of flexible IT services which will be aligned to our business. More value added services to enhance our existing portfolio. Our team will continue to be an effective business unit within the firm. This will be demonstrated by implementing better reporting capability in the form of a dashboard. We will continue to look for more efficient ways to enhance our ITSM processes ensuring they are robust and aligned to the business as it continues to grow. We will adopt them where necessary but not where they do not fit in with our business. Our desk will learn about the cloud and what it means in the future for our team and IT support.
What did it mean to your team to win your category this year?
What did it mean . . . . , it meant everything (literally). It was the recognition that we deserve for all of our hard work and commitment in what is sometimes very challenging situations. Our team understands what exceptional client service is all about, it’s what makes us different and stand out. Our people are fun and they love their work! This is demonstrated in everything that they do and deliver. It was a massive achievement for us as a team and something that we will shout about for a very long time. By winning this award we have demonstrated how important IT is to the firm. We are more than just a number (123), we are a team of highly skilled, passionate and professional IT analysts who are dedicated to supporting our clients by delivering them the best service possible.
We may be a small team in comparison to other firms but that doesn’t stop us being the best at what we do. Winning has been awesome!
How can your small service desk win an award, just like Browne Jacobson, in 2018?
To enter your team simply take a look at the ‘How To Enter’ web page here. Or why not speak to a member of the SDI awards team? Simply email us at email@example.com or call us on 01689 889100.