Office of Information Technology Newsletter

Overwhelming Success of Technology Support Desk

From left to right: Michael Luong, Technical Support Engineer; Lushan Silva, Technical Support Manager; Seare Habte, Technical Support Engineer; and Shawntez Blue, Technical Support Engineer

An average student today has three or more wireless devices connected to the AU network (typically a laptop, a smart phone, and an iPod Touch, iPad, or game console). After looking at that statistic in 2011, OIT decided to reposition and enlarge its walk-in support service, which was previously staffed with one engineer working in Anderson Computing Center, an inconvenient location for many. That location and staffing were not adequate for today's needs.

To address the problem, OIT partnered with the University Library to plan and create a one-stop center in Bender Library that would serve as the single point of contact for in-person information technology service for the community.

In October 2011, that walk-in service reopened in the first floor of Bender Library and was renamed the Technology Support Desk. The staff for this new "front" face of OIT, was doubled from one to two customer-focused engineers, who in their first six months of operation have earned a 97 percent satisfaction rating.

A new ticket based queuing system was introduced to manage walk-in traffic and better manage the workload to ensure a first-come-first-served service. Wait times for assistance can vary depending on how busy the Technology Support Desk is at any given time. If the wait time is significantly long, customers can come back at a time that is quieter and more convenient for them.

Since its opening, over 2000 students, faculty, and staff members received assistance with reimaging laptops, wireless connections, and other technology needs. That represents a 600% increase over the number of customers served at theĀ former location. In partnership with the University Library, this contributes to the philosophy of a one-stop shop for information and technology support services to best serve the AU community.

For questions about the Technology Support Desk, please contact the IT Help Desk at 202-885-2550, e-mail helpdesk@american.edu, or instant messenger at AskAmericanUHelp.

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