Reactive processes are fundamentally about fixing incidents or analysing data about incidents after the event. They are often described as ‘fix after failure’ processes.
It is a sad fact that in most educational establishments the only type of ICT support provided is reactive. This is due to a number of reasons. In some instances there simply aren’t enough technicians to cope with the workload but in many other cases it is the fact that there isn’t a formal ICT support framework in place that is the root cause.
In FITS we include two processes in the reactive group, Service Desk and Incident Management.
The Service Desk is the single point of contact within the school for all users of ICT and the services provided by technical support. Implementing a Service Desk process ensures that ALL ICT support requests are recorded in one place. It provides the cornerstone upon which everything else is built.
It is impossible to gain maximum benefit from your ICT support provision in your school without access to meaningful data. Being able to analyse what incidents are occurring and identifying recurring faults enables you to gradually eliminate almost all unplanned downtime.
This might sound like a bold statement to those of you who are still fire-fighting your ICT support requests but some FITS users have achieved this.
Service Desk is where we record incidents but it’s in Incident Management where we detect, diagnose and resolve ICT incidents as quickly as possible to minimise their adverse impact on normal operation.
Incident Management provides senior management within the school with the information they need to obtain a clear picture of what’s going on with ICT support. It identifies whether the current number of ICT technicians is sufficient to maintain the ICT provision at the right level to support the teaching and learning vision.