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Successful Implementation of Self Service - Help Please


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Morning all,

I have been advised that i have got to implement Self Service in Hornbill before i go on maternity leave (Which realistically give me 3 months!
We have been spiraling around with Self Service for a while as we really don't have a clue how to present our services or what to do after that.

Our main issues are;

  • How to present services simply
  • How many service we should provide on the portal to stop confusion
  • What is the max amount of questions we should be asking to ensure users actually use it (But IT also get the right information)
  • Do the tickets all go into the Service Desk bucket for sorting to the correct teams
  • Do we set the lowest priority or leave it blank until the service desk sort them.

There are probably a few more i haven't thought of yet/Have forgotten to ask, Could anyone give us some examples of their successful implementations and what they did and decided on?

Many thanks


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Guest Paul Alexander

Good morning

I’m not sure this will help, but I thought I’d give you a quick rundown on how we introduced a new department to Hornbill, and how they decided that using the Self Service Portal was going to be their preferred method of having their requests logged. We already had other departments using the self service portal, but this was going to be a completely new concept for this particular department as they hadn’t used anything to log their requests before and were just working from emails.


So….the Academy department (who offer training to the whole company) wanted to start using Hornbill to manage their workload. They wanted to ensure that people used the Self Service portal (SSP) to log their requests and to move away from email as their primary communication tool with people they were dealing with.

After discussing their needs with us, they decided that, initially, they would only need 2 catalog items under one service. These requests would be a ‘Request Training’ and a ‘Contact the Academy Team’ generic request.

The ‘Request Training’ request was the most difficult one to deal with as specific questions were needed to ensure that all the correct information was gathered at the point of logging. These included questions like whether more than one person required the training, whether it was mandatory training, where the training would be held etc. These questions were copied from the paper-based form the team had been using up until this point. The ‘dynamic questions’ options in Hornbill really came in useful for getting these forms set up.

The ‘Contact the Academy Team’ simply asks for short summary of what the request is about, a full description, screenshots and a contact phone number.

For our general ‘Incident’ requests, we always ask whether this affects one person, a few people, or the entire office. We also give our Services a Tier, so a Tier 1 service which affects a whole office is then a Priority 1 Incident, whereas a Tier 3 service which affects only one person is a Priority 5 request. We then have specific SLA’s based around these priorities.

Service Requests are all set to a standard SR SLA regardless of the service.

We added ‘resolution profiles’ and made them mandatory for these requests so that, when the analysts resolved the request they had to select what the call was about (i.e. Training, Updating details, Advice and Guidance, Expenses etc) which could then be reported on later.

When the team went ‘live’, they put an ‘out of office’ message on the team mailbox which told everyone trying to contact them to go to the portal instead. From that point, all of the team’s work is being dealt with in Hornbill Service Manager.

So…..for the portal, I would say that in the first place it needs to be planned!! Don’t just dive in……!

Presumably, as you’re using Service manager already, you’ve got your Services set up already? I would say, at a minimum, have one ‘log a request about this service’ catalog item per service.

Presumably the Services are dealt with by specific support teams? You can have a separate BPM per catalog item to assign each ticket per service to the correct team, and then (as long as each team is down as a supporting team for each service) the requests can be passed around the teams as and when required.

What we did with our Academy Team was to have a month of working this way, then ran reports on the resolution categories, and then sifted through to find any high volume generic requests which could then be singled out so that we could create a Catalog Item for this particular request which then meant that we could ask different questions to ensure that these could be handled in one hit without having to go back and ask the user for more information.

Using this method we now have 5 specific requests within the Academy service and we’re still monitoring to see if there are more requests we could create to make things even easier and more streamlined.

Also though, you’ve been using Service Manager for a while, so presumably you do have catalog items available for your Service Desk to use? If that’s the case, and if they work well, it’s a simple matter to publish those to the SSP….so you may have already done most of the work!!

I would say though, initially make sure you keep it simple!! It’s very easy to get overwhelmed by what COULD be, but if you start small and build up from there I think it’s manageable. We made a mistake in the beginning by having way too many services……our SSP is a bit of a mess at the moment, but we’re working to reduce the amount of individual services to tidy things up. Also, there is a new portal which has been promised by Hornbill which (apparently) should be available soon…..so maybe you could argue that getting the Portal working now might be a waste of time, as things will be changing soon? Then, by the time it does come online, you’ll be on maternity leave and it’ll be someone else’s challenge?!

This is all probably a bit rambling….and whether it’s of any use or not is debatable but I thought I’d at least try to get something written down for you….hope some of it is at least a little helpful!



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Don't know if ours can be classed as successful yet as we only launched new Hornbill and Self Service about 8 weeks ago - but we are seeing around 20% of calls being logged via the self service portal so far...

As Paul said we tried to keep it fairly simple.  We only have 8 requests that can be logged through the portal.  6 specific service requests (e.g. New computer, New software etc. and a Leaver process) and then a general SR and a general IN request.  The plan is to expand these over the next 6 months or so with more specific SR's and also a new improved New Starter process.

We have all calls logged to the service desk team and they then keep and deal with the calls with tasks being raised to other teams by the BPM as needed in most cases.  The priority for some calls (mostly the SR's) is set in the BPM and for the more generic calls we have the analyst set the priority manually.

To guide users to use the portal we send an update email with a "click here to see your update" link but also the analysts on the desk are tasked with "pushing" the self service option when users call in as well.... 

As I say 8 weeks in and we're still over 50% of calls logged via email so this is what I'm targeting to reduce and push to Self Service instead.image.thumb.png.2b3b256ae239867f0b97f1905a7e7b4a.png



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