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A day on the Service Desk

Today I drove to work via my usual route at the start of a week of ‘earlys’. This means I am covering the hours of 8 am till 5 pm. The longer days in February mean I am driving in daylight and the Auto setting on my car actually switched the headlights off!, for the first time in months.

There has been a storm over the UK overnight and, as I negotiate the access road to our offices, I have to pick my way through a carpet of twigs and branches that litter the tarmac and our car park. Some people have not been so lucky, and the news reports a list of fallen trees and damaged property in various parts of the country. Luckily my home was untouched, but a couple of our wheely bins made a bid for freedom and were lying on their sides instead of standing upright as they normally are.

Walking into the Marval offices I casually observe the buildings and equipment, just in case there is any damage to them or non-functioning hardware; the last thing we want is a problem with the ISDN lines, and therefore our phone system, or maybe a broken window and possible water damage from the heavy rain. That way I can get an early start on escalating a problem to the service provider and think about who to notify of an incident.

So sitting down at my desk I can review any email messages that have come in overnight and begin covering the phones. There is a kind of comfort I gain from perhaps getting a response along the lines of “Thanks for your proposed solution, we have implemented this and confirm it works” from a customer, or even a notification of a new issue; after all we are an ITSM Company providing cover to our own customers as well as writing and providing our ITSM Software, Marval MSM. After looking at any scheduled tasks it is true to say you never know what is going to happen that day.

A commonplace task is the installation of, or upgrade to, Marval MSM. We have practiced this time after time on our local computers, however each new release can have different requirements – maybe ElasticSearch has changed – and we need to be up to speed with these changes before helping our customers. Additionally, new features may be present in the tool, and like before we need to be familiar with the benefits of these.

Recently we have made available a fast way to search for things in the ITSM data held on each Marval MSM installation. For example, it is possible to type a name into the search and find which Company, Department or perhaps Support Group they are associated with, and then be shown on Google Maps where their offices are, and also what Incidents/Service Requests that Person has already logged for them in the system. I use this every day, for example the phone rings and a contact tells me their name which I type into Quick Search. Instantly I am reminded who they work for, what open issues our team has worked on for them. When the person adds more to the conversation I can be conversant with the (possibly Hot) topics.

I won’t claim there aren’t ups and downs, but at the end of the day I leave the office with a feeling of satisfaction. It comes with the realisation that someone out there was able to work better, or faster, or smarter, because I was there to help. It comes with the acknowledgement that I work with a great team who really believes in service. It comes with our culture, which is deeply customer-centric. Having the right tools in place helps, of course; and Marval MSM was designed around this value. That service excellence is about people.

This week is a special one too: on Friday we have a company-wide buffet lunch, a chance for us all to get together and chat about… anything instead of purely work related tasks. Last month there was a quiz as well, one round had celebrity names shown as pictures but in Catchphrase style – so the ‘…let’ of Kate Winslet was a ‘To Let’ Estate Agents sign, and the last part of George Michael’s name was a glass of beer, or Ale…

These little moments reinforce my sense of belonging to a great team; people who are smart, friendly, collaborative and fun. And that’s what makes a difference to my every day: I can say, at Marval it’s never “just another day in the office”.

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