Education has seen a drastic makeover in the past few years. We have moved on from books in the library to online research on a laptop and from lessons on the blackboard to a tablet. Technology has made life easier for both students as well as teachers, but this technology comes at a cost. More and more educational institutes are moving their IT support to a cloud-based platform to stick within their budgets. ITSM is slowly evolving in the education space. How are the education providers doing it?

Identify the Customer

In most businesses, IT teams are deployed to help out the employees with technical and development issues. It works differently in the field of education. There can be a multi-pronged approach for IT in education. You could assign or loan devices to students where the student/parents have to take care of the invention. There could be tech-based devices deployed in classrooms. All this results in a diverse set of so-called customers for the IT team to service. This would mean having multiple processes or tools to manage customers. This eventually adds up to the cost and also creates a chaotic environment for the IT team.

Design the Experience

Considering the sheer volume of calls that the IT team would get in an educational set up (Students emailing/calling/showing up at the department with an issue, teachers having complaints, parents having problems etc.), communication with each of them and helping them solve their concerns will be very difficult for the IT team. This is where good ITSM software acts as a boon. It makes it easy to organise all the queries received, as data in one single place. It offers remote access to your IT team can access it from wherever they are, in case problems arise after-office hours. ITSM tools can help educational institutes provide efficient and effective support no matter what the volume and type of complaints.

The ITSM Support

The support team usually will have multiple complex tasks to address. For example: - conducting an audit of assets, requesting for items that are unavailable, budgeting for technology etc. Put together, all these can seem very daunting. The IT Service Management solution should be able to help the support team to organise, execute and eventually automate a lot of these tasks.

You can create a service guide or catalogue, customised to direct each task and its related decisions to the appropriate team/person. This will simplify communication between the teams, close gaps and bottlenecks and also improve efficiency by leaps and bounds. This simple organisation of data can help put everyone on the same page and also eliminate multiple back & forth iterations and reduce the chance of occurrence of manual errors.

The ITSM tools also allow for efficient reporting. How long is a particular team taking to complete specific tasks? What is working and what is not for your business? What needs to be upgraded and what needs to be scrapped? All this data and more can be tracked by using useful ITSM software. As it can be customised, you will be able to measure success in terms of the number of working hours for your business. This will allow you to quantify your performance.

IT Asset Management

This area of business is where educational organisations are seeking improvements. Students today are tech-savvy, love devices and can maximise learning by using the internet and gadgets. Technology also has evolved to such an extent that minimum intervention and software upgrades are needed. It is easy to streamline technology to multiple students at a time today. The problem that can crop up is that students may not always be careful with the valuable assets allotted to them. It also is difficult to assign accountability for the technology/devices that are on a field trip, at home with the student, on the bus while travelling to/from the classroom etc.

ITSM tools can help to close some of these gaps and clear some of these bottlenecks. The administrative team will be able to track each individual asset. ITSM software can tell you where the asset was, where it is now, what has it been used for etc. Assets can be customised and configured to meet the requirements of a group of students, depending on their projects and usage. ITSM can also help in managing the purchases, updates, repairs and overall budgeting for the educational institute’s technology requirements.

A good ITSM software can allow you to automate and simplify many of the regular, time-consuming tasks. The data storage and organisation that ITSM offers can let the school technicians prioritise tickets and solve them accordingly. Everything gets tracked in the system. There will be no chaos and no confusion as to who needs to do what and by when. There will be clarity on which asset is with whom. Overall, ITSM tools can help improve the experience for all the parties of the educational institute – students, teachers, parents and the support team of the institute. IT Service Management can also help educational institutes measure their progress through the reporting facility which can help them figure how much time and money they have saved with the ITSM deployment.

Overall – a win-win situation for all!