CATALOGUE BEFORE YOU CHARGE BACK

Creating a chargeback system can trigger a lot of office politics. That’s why Forrester analyst Craig Symons suggests first building a service catalogue of identified services, associated costs and the level of service that IT can provide. This helps identify where demand is high and helps departments calaculate how the chargeback system will affect them. “In this new world, I’m paying $10,000 a month for e-mail services, $5,000 a month for help desk servies,” he said.

DON’T LET STATISTICS LIE

IT departments often have to conduct customer satisfaction surveys, but working with the right metrics is tricky. Howard Deutsch, CEO of survey firm QuantiSoft, said to leave a comments box with each question to get more context, and to consider the consistency of the service being provided. “Do the frequent users (of IT services) feel the same as infrequent users?” he asked. These will offer more reliable data to develop improvements.

DON’T FORGET ANYTHING IMPORTANT

Memory expert Bob Gray offered some advice to attendees of the CIPS Informatics Conference earlier this year. The average individual can only remember two out of 10 people they are introduced to at a given time, which should give you a sense of how our recall works. Practice what you need to know for 15-20 minutes a day for 21 days. At that point whatever you need will be as familiar as other habits, such as turning on your PC.

ASK INTELLIGENTLY TO AID INTUITION

You’ll always need to balance research with gut instincts, but for decisions like upgrading an IT platform, city of Toronto CIO Dave Wallace mulled some key questions that didn’t have black-and-white answers: “Is the culture in the degree of accepting change? Is this a good fit? Would people want to innovate across this platform?” IT managers will have to ask these again and again.

DAM THE E-MAIL FLOOD

You’ll never get ahead of information overload if users keep adding to the pile. That’s why Nancy Flynn suggested companies institute a one-day-a-week ban on internal e-mailing. She said one company “fined” those who violated this policy by making them donate to a local charity. While unorthodox, she said it fosters better inter-office communication and frees up employee’s time — at least until the next day.

WEB 2.0 NEEDS COMPLIANCE TOO

There’s ample awareness around monitoring and controlling communication channels like e-mail and chat, but don’t forget the new Web 2.0 kids on the block. Wikis, blogs and message boards need corporate compliance policies as well, unless a company wants to risk damage to reputation and brand, and leak of intellectual property, according to Deloitte’s Adel Melek.

DON’T GET PUSHED INTO THE SPOTLIGHT

Vendors love it when customers talk up successful deployments of their products to the media, but not all IT managers are ready for their 15 minutes of fame. The possibility of becoming a case study should be determined up front, and potentially in writing, said PR expert Michael O’Connor Clarke. You should know the details too. There’s a big difference between having your name in a press release and actually doing interviews or appearing at conference keynotes. “It depends on how the plan is set up at the beginning. It’s down to the account manager and the customer to determine the comfort level,” he said.



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