At work we have traditionally opted for a push “everything” to everyone and everywhere model with the desktop. This in my view is a legacy concept and can pigeonhole users in to a single “class” of user type.
For us (IT) it’s becoming increasingly challenging to manage the diverse range of users we have. From the task worker to mobile power user we can no longer “dictate” what people use to work/study.
One of the most exciting projects I think I’ve led in my time here is the introduction of the KUSS (Kingston University Service Store). With the KUSS we will (have already started to) change users into service consumers and empower our staff and students to control their workspace. This is achieved by providing a personal service catalogue, where services can be subscribed to and where the service will follow the user.
To give an example of how a small and simple service can dramatically improve the user experience, as well as save time and not have IT involved with the process…
One of our service store workflows has reduced one support task from an average 1 to 3 days response time down to 30 seconds!
Our academics often require the ability to have local administrator access on their managed workstations. The traditional process for this has been to,
- Log a call with the service desk
- Wait for the call to be escalated to the local support team
- Wait for local support team to either remotely add the user to the local administrators group or visit the machine in person.
Now with the KUSS we are providing users with a self-service facility to grant local administration access on their local workstation without the service desk or IT being involved. In addition to this a job is automatically opened and resolved for the user on our helpdesk system (for audit purposes).
This is one of many “small” services that can have a big impact.
Of course a service store is much more than simple administration tasks… Application access, app delivery, drive mappings, printer access, storage and VM provisioning – Anything that can be automated/scripted can be turned into a service for users to “consume” and make life easier for IT – or at least allow us to focus on innovation rather than spending our time being reactive.
For those that are interested… We’re using RES Service Orchestration for the KUSS. I can’t think of a better product that brings self-service delivery and workspace management together.
The best way to empower a user is to give them nothing…