Techport Thirteen has been a Bomgar partner since February 2010. In the fast-paced world of IT, that seems like forever. Back then, Techport got in to the Bomgar software and services sales business when our existing service management application customers began calling loudly for a live-time-chat solution. They needed something that complimented the Employee Self Service (ESS) trend, which was all the rage back in the day. Everyone wanted ESS, and loved the idea of receiving interactions from their callers in ways other than via phone or email scraping, therefore saving money by reducing the forces behind their call centers. Throw in some automation around triaging interactions and incidents, and ESS was here to stay. Chat services were on the cutting edge.
Today, the ESS concept remains very strong. Users have more options then ever to report issues to their service desks. Phone and email will always be high volume collectors, with out-of-the-box self-service and custom web portals using web services, coming in closely behind. Well maintained knowledge bases provide users with a do-it-yourself feel, and of course, chat services offer even more ways to interact.
True story... I once got in to a chat session with a level-1 technician for a web hosting company for some personal work, and after he and I had gotten over the hump of my issue, my ITSM brain kicked in. I began to ask him questions about chatting and how it impacted his ability to do his job. He said, "I love it! I can literally manage 10 chat sessions at once. In the past, I would have to put the phone down to stall while a level-2 tech looked up a solution, tieing up my phone line. Now, I am much more efficient, and if I need a break, a simple 'BRB' in the chat window says it all to the user." Wow. I never thought of a chat solution in terms of increasing productivity. Shame on me then.
Boldly into the future we went then with chat interactions for service desks. Solutions like Bomgar take information in chat windows, and auto-populate interaction tickets. Techs work their queue, and open live-chat sessions to discuss and hopefully solve incidents. And nowadays, you can do all of this from your smartphone, no matter where you are sitting. The world is certainly smaller these days.
But here's the thing. My ITSM brain that I eluded to earlier, still thinks of chat as a complimentary option for an existing service management solution. That is definitely still an option, and we at Techport are proud that Bomgar offers pre-built integration packages for our suite of supported service management solutions: ServiceNow, HP Service Manager and Cherwell Service Management (plus custom options).
Yes, blah, blah, blah... Bomgar can add chat functionality to your service management tool of choice making you appear "cool" to your users, especially to the younger generation, who only interacts with the world via their thumbs. A "with it" service desk has a chat option, and if you are an introvert, your life has been vastly improved.
But, we already knew all of this.
My education continues though, as I am starting to come around to seeing Bomgar as more than only a "nice to have for your help desk" complimentary solution. It can do so much more. Have a desktop support team? Of course you do... even we have a desktop support group. Bomgar can streamline your desktop support through simple remote support functionality, so your desktop team can remotely support your employees no matter where they are, or what type of device they are using.
A special shout-out to Travis DePuy, Technical Lead for our Bomgar Projects Division, who recently, when facing an email service issue, IM'd me and said, "Wouldn't it be nice if you could remote in to my machine and solve this for me instead of trying to talk me through it?" Travis is wise. I gave him the standard "ha" chat response, to which he replied, "You know that Bomgar can do that right?"
Hallelujah. Conside me a convert then. My ITSM brain feels like mush, and even an old-fart can learn. Thanks Travis :-)
Here's the thing... I know that there are many, many other old-school-IT'ers out there who still think of chat services only as complimentary to service desk software. What if... we started to think of Bomgar as a stand-alone solution? One that could deliver or streamline other services, like desktop or remote support, saving an organization time and money. If we could consider it in those terms, would you consider adding this stand-alone solution to your IT world?
By the way, is it a surprise that Bomgar dominates the college and university market these days? I know I am not the decider of what is "cool" but I am thinking the younger generation might be well suited for that role.
Believe it or not, back in 2009, Techport Thirteen actually made a feeble attempt to build our own ITSM chat solution. We were mildly successful using 3rd party API's, but ultimately knew that chat software was not within our core competencies. So, we went with the more robust, and let's face it, awesome Bomgar solution. Good decision.