Support call best practice

Tommy Oldfield
Tuesday 27 June 2023

Following best practice when submitting support calls through UniDesk or sending emails to the IT Service Desk, helps all University support teams to efficiently process your request.

This blog post focuses on requests actioned by the Digital Communications team. This includes reporting issues with the University website and requesting web page content changes.

Send your content changes in a Word document

When emails arrive to UniDesk, most of your original formatting gets automatically removed by the system. We cannot see highlighting, strikethroughs, or changes to font colour. This makes it difficult to figure out what needs to be updated.

What works well for us is having the content changes in a Word document, with track changes enabled. This way, we can easily spot your required changes and get the content updated quickly.

When copying and pasting web page content into a Word document, only include the paragraph in which the change appears, not all the content on the page. If you need changes on multiple pages, include the URL of each page.

Using track changes in Word is the best way of showing us what changes need to be made.

Respect the Service Level Agreement

The University’s service level agreement (SLA) tells you what you can expect when you send in an email or submit a support call to the IT Service Desk. The resolution targets in the SLA tell you how long it’ll take to get your call resolved. This timeframe depends on factors like:

  • the type of request (web content changes, page errors, navigation changes, web page analytics, etc.)
  • the impact on individuals, departments, or the University
  • the urgency of the call.

Most of the calls we receive are low priority and have a resolution target of 20 working days. While we usually resolve calls in a day or two, please keep the timeframes in mind when submitting a call. We cannot always resolve a call immediately.

If your changes are urgent, email [email protected] as soon as possible. If they are time-sensitive, give plenty of notice.

Please allow time between your initial request and receiving a reply. Some calls require further consideration or consultation with other members of the team, and we cannot always reply within a couple of days.

Provide enough information

Provide as much information as you can, to help us quickly action and resolve your request.

Access to WordPress

Include the person’s email address, and the URL of the WordPress site the person needs access to.

Web page errors

Include screenshots, and the URL of the page. This allows us to easily identify errors and bugs on the page.

Web page content updates

Include the URL of the page, and your Word file with track changes enabled.

If new content needs to be added to an existing page, tell us exactly where on the page you want the new content to be.

No email chains

Do not forward email chains to the IT Service Desk. Try to summarise the contents of the email chain if they are relevant to the request.

Make use of existing forms

Save time by using the forms in the UniDesk Self-Service portal, when requesting a:

Provide access to files

If you need to include a large file, or multiple files, with your request:

  1. Upload the files to your OneDrive.
  2. Share your file or folder, and select ‘People in University of St Andrews’.
  3. Include the share link in your email request.

YouTube uploads

To request a Panopto video to be uploaded to YouTube, make sure that the video owner has enabled the option to allow video downloads in Panopto.

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