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How to Plan for Surges in Enterprise Service Desk Ticket Volumes

Any time you’re considering a major change – a significant software rollout, a new product or service launch, a merger or acquisition, or even a seasonal uptick in business – it’s important to address how you’ll deal with the resulting surge in enterprise service desk ticket volumes. Any change to the customer experience is likely to leave customers wanting help, and it’s your job to provide it.

The good thing about knowing in advance that a surge in tickets is coming is that you can prepare for it. Service desk options including chatbots and automation can help you provide the support your customers need.

How to Tell When a Surge Is Coming

Every enterprise service desk has busy days, but a real surge is usually caused by something predictable. Some of the things that may lead to a surge in tickets include:

  • Software updates
  • New product launches
  • Mergers with other companies
  • Seasonal business trends

Any time you make a major change that will impact customers, it’s reasonable to expect that customers will need help coping with the change.

Focus on Triage

Knowing what’s likely to cause a surge in enterprise service desk tickets can help you develop a plan to streamline the intake process. Focusing on triage is essential because it will ensure that customers get the level of service they need.

We’ve found it helpful to try to anticipate the most common reasons that people will call or message your service desk. In a merger, for example, you should get input from customer service professionals from both companies and work to identify likely customer issues.

You may want to rank potential customer issues according to their complexity. This step can help you when you plan for the best way to handle the surge in tickets.

Target Issues That Can Be Resolved with Automation

The next step is to identify those issues that might be resolved with automation, whether that means adding customer service chatbots to your service desk or providing self-service options on your website. The idea is to make it possible for customers with issues that can be quickly resolved to get help immediately, freeing up your experienced CSRs to deal with more complex issues.

Chatbots can easily handle things like:

  • Password resets
  • Providing instructions for common technical issues
  • Triaging incoming ticket requests and assigning them accordingly
  • Directing people who contact them to resources on your website

The key is to understand the limitations of chatbots. They can handle simple technical issues if you program them properly. However, they can’t interpret nuance or provide the same kind of support a human agent can.

Optimize Your Automation

The final step is to optimize your automation to ensure that it works smoothly, and customers are comfortable with it. This includes:

  • Mapping out workflows for common issues
  • Having programmers and experienced CSRs work together
  • Hiring scriptwriters to write engaging and helpful scripts
  • Ensuring that incoming tickets are escalated to human agents as needed
  • Making it easy for customers to opt out of the chatbot and get to a human agent if they prefer
  • Educating customers about the chatbots and their capabilities

If you optimize your chatbots, you’ll increase the chances that your clients will be comfortable using them. High adoption rates are a must if you want to be able to cope with the surge in tickets.

A significant surge in service desk tickets doesn’t have to mean that your staff is overwhelmed. By planning properly and implementing automation where it makes sense, you can ensure that your customers get the service they deserve.

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