Keys to Controlling Mobile Support Costs and Ticket Volumes

Overview
User support is a consideration in nearly every mobile business decision; every new device, application
and mobile service requires an effective support plan to accommodate ever-changing business needs.
The internal mobile help desk plays a critical role in successful execution of overall mobility strategy.
Productivity, efficiency and business continuity are key outcomes of employee mobile enablement.
If support protocols are ineffective, these benefits quickly erode.
A myriad of different support requests are handled by the mobile support desk on a daily basis, and
technical issues surrounding equipment and network connectivity are leading reasons for corporateowned
mobile device users to contact support. A portion of these issues will require escalation for
further diagnosis; a majority will be resolved upon first contact with basic instruction from support
staff and simple steps performed by the end-user.

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Every organization would like to reduce support costs and ticket volumes, but with ever-changing
business demands and new technology constantly being introduced, most struggle to accomplish these
objectives. Fortunately, with adequate support tools and the right strategy, these goals can be achieved
while transforming the help desk into a more efficient operation and a center of excellence
for the organization.

Increased Investment and Enablement Are Driving Mobile Support Costs Higher
Organizations across the globe are increasing their reliance on mobile technology to improve business
operations, communication and productivity. As a result, investment in mobile assets and services
continues to grow. On average, nearly one-third of an organization’s total telecom investment represents
mobility spend, although some organizations report that mobile costs have already eclipsed fixed
telecom spend. Investment in mobile technology will continue to increase for the foreseeable future
and mobile support costs and requirements will continue to climb. Organizations need to prepare for
this transformation and ensure solid service and support plans are in place.

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In addition, more employees are being enabled with a mobile device. Smart Devices and tablets are
proliferating throughout the organization. The Bring-Your-Own Device (BYOD) phenomenon is one of
the primary drivers behind increased enablement. More organizations are allowing personal devices
into the workplace. The initial decision for many of these organizations is to not support these devices;
however, requests for email and network access begin to overwhelm the support desk and inevitably
the company decides to support these additional users, unexpectedly increasing the support costs for
the organization.

Gaining Visibility is the Starting Point
An accurate inventory of mobile assets, applications and services is essential in order to provide effective
help desk support. Knowing who within the organization is using each device, is equally as important.
These parameters serve as the baseline to define what the organization needs to support, and who is
eligible to receive it.
Although many organizations attempt to standardize on a single mobile operating system, most are
unsuccessful at achieving this objective. Different business and operational needs, along with the
rise in Bring-Your-Own Device (BYOD) program adoption are two of many driving factors that prohibit
standardization from occurring. The end result is multiple operating systems and device types within the
mobile environment that need to be supported, adding more costs and placing additional knowledge and
training requirements on already over-burdened support staff.
Although 39% of all enterprise corporate-owned devices are Blackberrys, Apple and Android have quickly
gained ground and will soon surpass Blackberry as the dominate operating systems across enterprise
mobile environments. Not surprisingly, Apple and Android are most prevalent across employee-owned
devices. This information demonstrates the complexity of today’s mobile environment and the different knowledge sets required by support staff.

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Self Service – The Key to Reducing Support Costs and Volume
In today’s technologically-savvy society, most individuals feel comfortable accessing the internet to find
answers and information. Applying this logic to the topic of support and employees, mobile users are
likely willing to attempt resolving issues on their own if effective tools and information is available.

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Empowering mobile users to resolve simple, basic issues on their own without contacting the help desk is
an effective way to significantly reduce the organization’s volume of help desk tickets and overall support
costs. However, many organizations lack adequate self-support tools to make this an effective reality. A
link to a web page that contains frequently asked questions (FAQs) typically provides little information
from an actual issue resolution perspective. Utilization of a service provider support portal or knowledge
base may ultimately result in pertinent issue resolution information, but navigating through these
systems and locating the information that pertains to a specific device can be cumbersome and consume
valuable employee time and effort.
Many organizations require around-the-clock support based upon the nature of business. Organizations
operating across the globe with an extensive international traveler base cannot afford to have mobile
users and their devices out of commission. However, the 24×7 support requirement can be very
expensive to deliver. Incorporating self-service tools provide a viable, cost effective 24×7 support option.
Implementing the efficiency of self-service support options without sacrificing a positive person-toperson
service experience is the key. Look for solutions that provide clear, relevant and easily accessible
support information based on your mobile environment. In addition, ensure reporting metrics such as the
type of resources and information users are accessing is available. This knowledge is essential to improve
understanding of user issues and will provide direction for future support improvements.

Conclusion
Reliance on mobile technology will continue to increase; mobile investment and support costs will rise
accordingly. Organizations must have a defined, sound strategy in order to effectively support the user
community. Offering self-service options is an excellent way to reduce mobile support costs and ticket
volumes, while continuing to provide effective support levels and resolve mobile user issues.