CXO

Download these guidelines to develop the right end user/IT support staff ratio

When IT support staffs are undermanned, a company's productivity can suffer. Finding the right balance between end users and support staff is a vexing problem. Our download offers a staffing ratio formula that could help.


What’s the best ratio of end users to IT support staff? Well, if you are like most IT managers, you want a reasonable number of people manning the phones or out in the cubicles helping company employees with their technical problems.

The difficulty is justifying the costs of adding staff to get to what you believe is a “reasonable” number. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to solve the debate with a single ratio that is standard for every IT shop in the world? The problem is that one number doesn’t exist.

That’s why TechRepublic has created a download to help IT managers. Download “Developing the right end user/IT support staff ratio” to receive a blueprint for coming up with the elusive, magic ratio that is right for your company. This resource document will also assist you if you need to compose a compelling argument when senior management asks, “Why do you need to hire more staff?”

The download includes the results of a survey in which nearly three dozen companies were asked about their staffing ratios. Business technology advisor, Gartner, based in Stamford, CT, conducted the survey.

How important is a ratio?
TechRepublic frequently hears from IT managers who feel overwhelmed with an unrealistic workload. For instance, James, who describes himself as “drowning in Texas,” has one support person for 385 end users.

James’ experience apparently is not unique.

“I can remember a time when I had over 400 computers to take care of and not enough hours in a day to even blink at them with all the other fires I had to put out,” Dennis wrote.

Bare-bones staffing levels hurt more than morale and calls for service; they can have a negative impact on productivity for the entire enterprise. Companies are suffering “cascaded productivity loss,” according to a Boeing Company report that can be found on Microsoft’s Web site.

According to the report, productivity losses occur this way:

The person who has a technical problem ceases production. Then, if that person can’t get in touch with support, he or she will ask a fellow employee for help, so now you have two people not working. More time is lost when either or both of these people try to find support resources elsewhere, either by calling the original equipment manufacturer, software vendor, or other potential sources of help.

It’s part of your job to convince upper management that you need adequate resources. Download “Developing the right end user/IT support staff ratio” to begin crafting a convincing argument.
How many end users are you supporting with how large a staff? Are automated tools able to reduce the number of people you need? Share your thoughts on the matter in a discussion below, or send us a note.
What’s the best ratio of end users to IT support staff? Well, if you are like most IT managers, you want a reasonable number of people manning the phones or out in the cubicles helping company employees with their technical problems.

The difficulty is justifying the costs of adding staff to get to what you believe is a “reasonable” number. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to solve the debate with a single ratio that is standard for every IT shop in the world? The problem is that one number doesn’t exist.

That’s why TechRepublic has created a download to help IT managers. Download “Developing the right end user/IT support staff ratio” to receive a blueprint for coming up with the elusive, magic ratio that is right for your company. This resource document will also assist you if you need to compose a compelling argument when senior management asks, “Why do you need to hire more staff?”

The download includes the results of a survey in which nearly three dozen companies were asked about their staffing ratios. Business technology advisor, Gartner, based in Stamford, CT, conducted the survey.

How important is a ratio?
TechRepublic frequently hears from IT managers who feel overwhelmed with an unrealistic workload. For instance, James, who describes himself as “drowning in Texas,” has one support person for 385 end users.

James’ experience apparently is not unique.

“I can remember a time when I had over 400 computers to take care of and not enough hours in a day to even blink at them with all the other fires I had to put out,” Dennis wrote.

Bare-bones staffing levels hurt more than morale and calls for service; they can have a negative impact on productivity for the entire enterprise. Companies are suffering “cascaded productivity loss,” according to a Boeing Company report that can be found on Microsoft’s Web site.

According to the report, productivity losses occur this way:

The person who has a technical problem ceases production. Then, if that person can’t get in touch with support, he or she will ask a fellow employee for help, so now you have two people not working. More time is lost when either or both of these people try to find support resources elsewhere, either by calling the original equipment manufacturer, software vendor, or other potential sources of help.

It’s part of your job to convince upper management that you need adequate resources. Download “Developing the right end user/IT support staff ratio” to begin crafting a convincing argument.
How many end users are you supporting with how large a staff? Are automated tools able to reduce the number of people you need? Share your thoughts on the matter in a discussion below, or send us a note.

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