HDI Survey Says Despite Difficult Economic Backdrop the IT Support Industry
Working Hard to Maintain its Commitment to Service and Support

HDI Announces the 2009 Annual Practices & Salary Report, Presents an Overall Look at the State of the IT Support Industry

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Nov. 30 /CNW/ -- HDI, the world's largest membership association for help desk and IT service and support professionals and the premier certification body for the industry, today announced the 2009 Annual Practices & Salary Report, a comprehensive study that presents an overall look at the state of the IT support industry. The report shows that the technical support industry is working hard to maintain its commitment to the service and support of end-users and customers, despite the difficult economic backdrop.

"The Annual Practices & Salary Report takes a deep dive into the state of the service and support industry. It offers an inside look at support centers' practices used throughout the industry which assists managers and directors to validate existing practices, showcases new ideas for improving methods and procedures in support centers and also provides a set of data to which support centers can benchmark against," said Rich Hand, HDI Executive Director of Membership. "Given the world's current economic climate, support centers are working hard to maintain their commitment to the industry and meet the needs of their customers."

The study was conducted with 1,053 participants from 11 industries between May and July 2009 from the United States, Australia, Canada, India and Philippines. The results illustrate behaviors and opinions of support centers in a wide array of industries, sizes, and organizations that range from local to international. The report is broken down into six categories, including Incident Management; Support Tools; Process, Procedures, and Strategies; Performance Metrics; Training, Certification, and Satisfaction; and Salaries.

    

    Report highlights include:
    --  Even though support centers in general do not appear to be supporting
        more customers, the large majority of support centers continue to see
        an increase in their number of incidents.  The leading contributor to
        increased incidents, once again, is attributed to changes in
        infrastructure and/or products.
    --  Self-help tools are the primary implementation initiative for 13
        percent of support centers. This is up from 10 percent in 2008.
    --  The telephone continues to be the leading communication channel for
        incident management, followed by email.  One-third of support centers
        respond to email incidents between 15 minutes and one hour and over
        one-third respond between one and four hours.  Additionally, 70
        percent of incidents are resolved with two or less email exchanges
        and fewer e-mail incidents are being converted to phone support than
        in 2008.
    --  The number of support centers whose employees are receiving bonuses
        is down five percent. Still, there are 19 percent of support centers
        whose management receives bonuses and 45 percent whose management and
        staff receive bonuses.
    --  Fewer support centers are outsourcing services in all areas except
        for one, hardware support and repair.  The top reasons support
        centers are not outsourcing more are due to concerns about control of
        service, service quality, customer acceptance and then cost.
    --  Support managers foresee both hiring freezes and salary freezes in
        their support organizations. This is up 21.4 percent and 23.6
        percent, respectively from 2008.
    --  Although the primary training focus for new hires is product
        knowledge, customer service remains the number one area that support
        staffs are being trained in overall.  The Computer industry is
        currently providing the most training for its IT support staffs while
        Manufacturing and Retail provide very little.
    --  Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) seems to be
        particularly popular in Australia as well as large support centers
        and with those who provide internal support.  Forty-three percent of
        support organizations are currently using or implementing ITIL and 21
        percent are planning to implement some part of it.
    --  Sixty-five percent of support centers said that there is no direct
        charge to their customer for support services. This is up 5 percent
        from 2008.
    --  Sixty-three percent of support centers currently use Knowledge
        Management Software, while 20 percent are planning to add it.  In
        addition, over 13 percent of support centers are calling it their
        primary initiative for tool implementation.
    --  While many support centers are embracing collaborative tools such as
        Share Point (30 percent) and Wikis (17.4 percent), they do not widely
        use social networking tools such as blogs, Linked IN, Twitter, Face
        Book, or My Space to provide support.
    

For more information about HDI or the 2009 Practice & Salary Report, contact HDI Executive Director of Marketing Allison Wroe, 719-785-5355, awroe@thinkhdi.com; or visit http://www.thinkhdi.com.

    
    About HDI
    

HDI, a Think Services company, is the world's largest IT service and support membership association and the industry's premier certification and training body. Guided by an international panel of industry experts and practitioners, HDI is the leading resource for help desk/support center emerging trends and best practices. HDI provides members with a vast repository of resources, networking opportunities and the largest industry event - the HDI Annual Conference and Expo. Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA, HDI offers training in multiple languages and countries. For more information, visit http://www.thinkhdi.com or call +1 719.268.0174.

    
    About Think Services
    

Think Services connects specialized communities worldwide using educational events, consulting, training, certification, membership, and innovative media. Providing comprehensive opportunities for people to learn from, network with, and inspire each other, Think Services builds strong brands and works within communities to foster a unique affinity with its products and services. The division's flagship products include the Game Developers Conference, the Webby Award-winning Gamasutra.com, Game Developer magazine, the International Customer Management Institute (ICMI), and HDI. Think Services is a subsidiary of United Business Media, a global media and marketing services company with a market capitalization of more than $1.6 billion. To learn more, visit www.think-services.com.

SOURCE HDI

For further information: For further information: Allison Wroe of Think Services' HDI, +1-719-785-5355, awroe@thinkhdi.com Web Site: http://www.thinkhdi.com

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