Yorkshire Water has improved the reponse time of its first-line IT support service desk by placing staff on secondment within another part of the business.
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Since April 2008, this has helped the water company improve its service level agreement by 10%, with 95% of IT help desk calls responded to within 40 seconds.
The training enables IT support staff to understand the business impact of an IT problem, the company said.
Julian Halstead, IT service manager at Yorkshire Water, said, "We have a strong people focus. All our service staff spend time in the business."
When staff return to the service desk, they give a presentation to the rest of the team on their experience of the business function they worked in and the role IT plays.
Halstead said the service desk at Yorkshire Water are trained to provide first line support for Yorkshire's bespoke applications, SAP and the ruggedised laptops used by field engineers. "When staff leave the service desk they are able to take their skills to other parts of IT at Yorkshire Water."
The service desk supports 2,400 users within Yorkshire Water and a further 2,600 external businesses and contractors.
Last week, Yorkshire Water was voted Europe's most successful small IT support team 2008 at the Service Desk & IT support Excellence Awards in Brighton, organised by the Service Desk Institute.