Where to Use Cognitive Solutions in IT Support

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By: Carlos Demetrio|

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What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you imagine cognitive solutions in IT support? Chat bots and synthetic voices? These are common tools that use cognitive technology, but they aren’t the limit of what’s possible. There’s so much more that can be done in tech support with cognitive capabilities.

According to a 2015 Gartner report, by this year, one-third of all customer service interactions (including those with IT users) will still require the support of a human intermediary. This stands true, but you can use cognitive features to improve the human touch.

Unstructured Data Analysis

IT support deals with data every day to track issues, identify trends and create reports for various stakeholders. But making sense of large amounts of data is not an easy task, even when it’s structured as it is in IT incident reports.

True value comes from unstructured data. This includes ticket descriptions and input provided by users in free text fields in satisfaction surveys, bulletins, emails and many other sources. But because unstructured data is more abundant, analyzing it is even more challenging.

Regardless of whether you have structured or unstructured data, you can start using cognitive solutions on the backstage to perform data analysis, along with voice and image recognition.

Tone Analysis

Consider all the emails users send to IT support describing their issues, asking for tips or providing feedback about the service they received. How can you tell if they’re satisfied or frustrated? Sometimes, written language can be challenging to decode without the nuances of tone of voice and body language. And what about the messages IT is sending to users? How are your newsletters perceived by your audience? Do they make the IT staff sound friendly or unapproachable? The impact of the tone in your message is just as important as the content itself — sometimes, it’s even more important.

If you start performing tone analysis on written messages to and from IT users, you can use those findings to discover more about user satisfaction and then adjust or review your IT communications strategy accordingly.

Creating a Useful Knowledge Base

Knowledge isn’t useful if it isn’t accessible. The content in your IT knowledge base — whether used by support or IT users — should be easy to retrieve. If it takes too much time to find the correct entry and the user just gives up and calls the service desk, your knowledge base isn’t working as efficiently as it could be.

Creating a useful knowledge base requires more than an improved search mechanism. In some cases, there’s such an abundance of data sources and search results that the information overload it produces can have the same effect as no information at all: The data simply isn’t used.

This is where Cognitive Exploration steps in — as the evolution of search. This technology can understand the intent and the context of a user’s question. The information returned is then tailored, relevant and capable of assisting the user.

All these cognitive features may not be seen by users, but they will surely perceive the results from the agility and quality of their company’s new personalized IT support. So, don’t wait to start your cognitive journey.

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About The Author

Carlos Demetrio

Certified Technical Solution Architect, IBM

Carlos Demetrio is a technical solution architect with IBM Brazil specializing in IT outsourcing of end user support, enterprise mobility and endpoint management. In this role, he helps global clients address business challenges with technology. Prior to designing IBM Workplace Support Services solutions, he spend more than 10 years delivering these services to various IBM clients in a broad range of projects and roles.

Articles by Carlos Demetrio
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