What kind of impact could the World Cup have on your service desk?

World Cup 2014With today marking the start of the 20th edition of the world’s biggest sporting event, it’s interesting to think what kind of effect the tournament could have for businesses. Of course it depends on where in the world you’re located, but there will be plenty of football fans and patriotic supporters keen to keep on top of the action during traditional working hours. It’s fair to say that in the past four years a lot has happened in the world of streaming and viewing habits – can you believe that the Apple iPad had barely just launched when the 2010 World Cup kicked off in South Africa?

Regardless of what kind of strain that streaming the games might have on network performance (and productivity!), big events like the World Cup are inherently likely to result in a drop in headcount as people take time off to watch, or even visit the action if they’re lucky enough. When these events take place during the summer months as they often do, the situation is compounded by the fact that people are already taking holidays.

IT managers could well be worried that a critical drop in headcount in their teams will unavoidably see the time it takes to handle service requests rise, affecting productivity across the entire business and therefore putting their department under the microscope.

The best way to address this is to make sure that employees can self-service as much as possible for routine IT issues like setting up new users, installing software or resetting passwords. If, for example, a new employee starts – to cover for someone travelling to Brazil maybe – it should be as easy as possible for the HR team to set them up solo. This means no calls to the IT department asking them to set up their workstation, the tools should be in place that this can be done in just a few clicks.

By empowering areas of the business to set up their own services and manage appropriate requests without having to rely on IT, unplanned for or unavoidable dips in manpower can have much less of an impact on the running of the organisation than you might initially expect. We can only hope that the players in Brazil don’t have too many productivity issues to contend with!