Keeping accurate records is vital to maintaining an organized, responsible IT support department. Help desks, computer shops, and independent contractors alike must sufficiently document the equipment they service and the work they perform.
Good records are key
Proper documentation allows you to accurately charge customers and track how your staff spends its time. However, good support records also benefit the PC technician in several ways. They can help to:
- Resolve future problems more quickly because you have a record of what you did previously.
- Track what your personnel works on most frequently.
- Identify common problems that occur on a regular basis, allowing you to be proactive in your solutions.
- Demonstrate the help desk’s value to your organization.
Tracking work with a hardware repair ticket
All help desks and IT shops should track the work done on every piece of hardware they service. The hardware repair ticket’s main purpose is to track the work done so you’ll have a record of problems, their causes, and their solutions. This record can help you establish trends and procedures to make future work easier.
The hardware repair ticket also allows PC technicians to track a specific piece of equipment as it moves through their IT shop. You should always keep detailed records when repairing or upgrading someone else’s property. You should use these records to inform the owner of what was done, how long it took, and how much they owe you. Keeping accurate records from the moment a piece of hardware is received can protect the IT technician from headaches in the future.
Hardware repair ticket layout
Although your IS support organization may need to tailor a hardware repair ticket for its specific needs, all hardware repair tickets should collect certain general information. The hardware repair ticket should note:
- Who brought the equipment in for service, their physical location and department if applicable, and their phone number.
- A description of the equipment to be serviced.
- The date and time the equipment was received.
- The technician who received the equipment and who will do the work.
- A problem description.
- Initial action taken to resolve the problem.
- All parts used in the repair.
- The customer’s approval for the work done.
- The time and date the equipment will be returned to the customer.
Downloading the TechRepublic Hardware Repair Ticket
TechRepublic has created a hardware ticket you can use for your own record-keeping system. You can find the download by following this link or by clicking on the Downloads link in the navigation bar on the top of this page. TechRepublic has many useful documents, templates, and applications available for download, so be sure to check out the other offerings.
The TechRepublic Hardware Repair Ticket is an Adobe PDF file, and you’ll need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to open the document. You can download the Adobe Acrobat Reader here.
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Bill Detwiler has nothing to disclose. He doesn't hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
Bill Detwiler is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and Tech Pro Research and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop support specialist in the social research and energy industries. He has bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Louisville, where he has also lectured on computer crime and crime prevention.