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Delivering Multiyear Service Desk Support for a Global Law Firm


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Multiyear Service Desk Support for a Global Law Firm

A leading law firm required service desk support to help increase productivity and minimize user downtime. TEKsystems has been providing 24x7x365 support on site for nearly 20 years.

The client is a leading international law firm with approximately 2,000 legal professionals in about 30 offices around the globe. The firm supports a range of industry sectors, including energy, technology and financial services, by providing a multitude of legal services, such as antitrust and competition, intellectual property, brand and product innovation, and consumer protection. TEKsystems has provided 24x7x365 support services to this law firm since 1999.

Citrix / VPN, DTE (time reporting), eRoom, MacPac, Matter-centric workspace (FileSite), Microsoft Office products, Mobile device management (MobileIron, BES), Nuance PDF, Remote access (Dameware, Zenworks), ServiceNow, Workshare (document comparison / email cleansing)

The client, a leading global law firm, required support from a third-party IT services provider to manage its internal IT service desk. The original service desk team struggled to deliver consistent service that met the needs of end users—the large network of lawyers, their assistants and any other organization personnel who may call the service desk for help. The client’s human resources department was not equipped to properly determine the skill sets needed for the help desk. Instead of allocating resources and energy to the help desk, external support would enable the client to dedicate more time to its core competency—practicing law.

As a professional services provider, the client delivered legal support that was billable based on time. In fact, the legal counsel currently bills out to its customers in six-minute increments. Time was a critical factor for the service desk, and any user downtime could have potentially costly impacts. In terms of business objectives, the client required a partner that could restore end users to productivity as quickly as possible, while minimizing any potential disruptions of service. To optimize the service desk, there were several important measurements the client hoped to achieve, including reduced mean time to resolution, increased incident resolution rates and fast and accurate escalations to appropriate personnel.

The partner of choice would need to be able to handle the entire service desk operation. The client’s third-party service desk partner would need to seamlessly support their professionals, ensuring that their day-to-day work was not interrupted by hiccups in technology or delays in troubleshooting issues. Not only was it important to mitigate end-user downtime, but the client also required that the IT services partner deliver high-quality and consistent support services across the organization.

The client asked three IT services providers to submit proposals. TEKsystems’ Support Services practice proposed delivering an outsourced service desk model to enable the client to focus on its area of expertise, legal services. We would conduct the following specific activities:

Service Desk Operations

TEKsystems would deliver 24x7x365 on-site support of service desk requests coming from the client's offices around the globe; we would support requests, including phone, voicemail and email. All requests would be managed via a single point of contact to ensure that the end user experiences timely, high-quality and consistent support. Our team would practice incident logging/classification, prioritization, tracking and closed-loop resolution. We would strive to resolve routine incidents during the first call and properly route those incidents requiring escalation in a timely manner. Our team would also provide specialized desktop or application product support and end-user coaching and guidance as needed.

Process Documentation and Implementation

Documenting processes would help formalize service desk tasks and provide a foundation for delivering consistent solutions over time. We would also facilitate call flow management and optimization processes. Further, we would determine and assign incident severity levels and establish notification and escalation procedures based on the client’s response time requirements. This would ensure service desk requests are properly managed, routed and escalated, as needed, depending on the severity of the issue. Throughout this engagement, TEKsystems would be dedicated to improving our performance; to keep a pulse on our progress, we would determine client satisfaction measurement processes (e.g., surveys) and create service desk service-level management procedures.

Service Desk Management

The management component of our delivery would involve sourcing and retaining the right resources for the client’s service desk. TEKsystems would retain the client’s existing service desk resources, and scale the team with TEKsystems’ personnel in order to flex with the fluctuating call volume and any potential evolving needs of the business. It would also include personnel management, staff scheduling and workload balancing. We would develop the skills of our team over time, allowing service desk analysts to keep up with any potential technology changes during the course of this long-term engagement. In order for the client to stay informed of our progress and reinforce ongoing improvement, we would provide standard and ad hoc reporting on our performance, as well as aged problem tracking, and problem category trending and analysis.

Ongoing Recommendations, Continuous Improvement and Quality Assurance

The TEKsystems team would remain committed to not only improving the quality of our performance and delivery, but also our partnership with the client. Bearing this in mind, we would monitor what works and what does not, evaluate data trends, analyze root causes and look for opportunities to learn from the data and improve our processes. It would also be important for us to keep a pulse on potential improvements to tools and technologies that could impact the service desk. In terms of building the partnership, not only would we help the client stay informed on our progress through regular reporting, but we would also try to strengthen our communication between TEKsystems and client staff and stakeholders on an ongoing basis.

TEKsystems offered years of experience providing flexible and agile service desk support that brought the client confidence that we were the right fit for the job. Not only do we have a dedicated Support Services practice, but we had also delivered on similar engagements for clients within the legal sector, lending us firsthand knowledge and understanding of the time and issue sensitivities associated with professional services organizations. Time is of the essence and anything that stands in the way of lawyers doing their job could be extremely costly. Based on this, the client trusted our promise to deliver high-quality, seamless service desk support and we were selected over the other two IT services providers.

For nearly 20 years, TEKsystems has successfully delivered service desk support to this global law firm. Over time, the client has gone through substantial business changes and growth, and we have been able to flex and scale our support in alignment with the business’s evolution. In fact, in the time that we have been supporting this organization, their staff has increased by approximately 20 to 30 percent and international locations were added to their portfolio. More recently, the client experienced significant merger and acquisition activity that resulted in organizational changes, including leadership shifts and substantial geographic growth.

We have grown our team to accommodate the changing business demands, and currently have about 20 resources dedicated to this engagement, including a team lead, supervisor, on-site delivery manager and analysts. Beyond that, we also provide a global delivery manager.

At more than 5,800 contacts/interactions per month on average, our service desk team has consistently achieved resolution rates at or above 80 percent. This means that there was high productivity among users—the lawyers—subsequently maximizing profitability and success of the client’s core business function. Our high resolution rates also have helped decrease escalation calls, resulting in reduced costs and internal staff needed to respond to second- and third-tier issues.

We have quickly trained and ramped our team up or down to help the client through several mergers and acquisitions, major deployments and upgrades, outages and other special projects. Considering the longevity of our partnership, the transformations and business changes over the years that we have been able to support is impressive. Massive organizational changes pose potential surges in service desk requests, and the sensitive nature of legal work underlines the importance of service desk continuity for client end users. For example, the client was undertaking a large IT transformation around information security. One part of this initiative was password resets; this was the first time the client enforced a 90-day password reset policy for their users. Another part of this initiative was user access to secure documents—ensuring the right people had access to private documents and maintaining that confidentiality. With these types of changes, we anticipated a large surge in calls from end users who forgot their passwords, were unable to access a document they should have access to, or any other issue related to the overall transformation. We were prepared for changes such as this that would potentially generate massive spikes in service desk requests, and this enabled us to respond quickly and minimize end-user downtime. This was especially important because time is such a critical factor for lawyers under tight deadlines.

Like the information security transformation initiative, our team has staffed for and delivered service desk “hyper care” as client situations demand. Meaning, we have been able to grow the team rapidly, and train and teach processes, all while remaining flexible and agile with the client needs—above and beyond the day-to-day support promised. We have had to increase headcount by as much as 25 percent to support key transitions involving complex end-user training programs to ensure user adoption across a variety of products, including document management tools, email platforms, operating systems and productivity software. And as upgrades or other initiatives wrap up, we have provided in-depth reporting and analysis regarding the impact of the effort on call volume. This has enabled us to offer the client’s IT department guidance and recommendations for issue areas and potential training opportunities.

And with the more recent acquisition activity, TEKsystems supported the transition of the service desk from on site at the client to off site in an entirely different city. Given the client was based out of an expensive and major metropolitan area of the eastern U.S., the new leadership aimed to relocate its service desk support to drive down costs. We facilitated this transition. Many team members had been with the client for nearly two decades, and the relocation was sensitive. Within a two-month span we moved the service desk off site, helping either relocate personnel to a new city (one person), or—in the case of the majority of team members—find new job opportunities.

Our commitment to delivering consistent, high-quality service desk support, along with our ability to help our client through critical companywide initiatives, has enabled TEKsystems to grow into a key business and operational partner for our client. Throughout the duration of this partnership, our responsibilities have not changed, but expanded and we have increased our visibility into the client’s end-user audience, enabling us to make strategic decisions regarding staffing as well as proactively react to changing business levels. Today our work has been focused on increasing self-service / self-help, workflow automation, and driving off-site integration.