University for the Creative Arts
IT operators using Reservations Management
reservations in 2021
Adapting Reservations Management for the new normal
A TOPdesk customer for over five years, the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) is a specialist institution for art and design. They have four campuses spread across the south of England in Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham, and Rochester.
Rebecca Curtis, IT Service Management Officer, spoke to us about a unique project to utilize the Reservations Management feature in preparation for returning to site, following months of working and learning from home.
Through TOPdesk, we have set up hot desks as assets which staff can book via a tile in the Self-Service Portal. We want to ensure that people are confident when visiting site that there is a space available for them to work safely.
The challenge: managing a return to campus
The service desk plays a key role at UCA, helping staff to manage their workflows and troubleshoot problems. Under normal circumstances, dropping into the service desk when an issue arises would be a regular occurrence, albeit an inconvenience. However, with staff returning to campus, this issue has become amplified with social distancing measures and the risk of queues forming.
Additionally, Rebecca says they are looking for ways to welcome back those who wish to work in the office: “We want to ensure that everybody coming in feels reassured that they have a reserved workspace which is clean, safe, and offers the necessary protection.”
The solution: Reservations Management to book appointments and hot desks
TOPdesk’s Reservations Management feature can often fall under the radar. However, a webinar highlighted its versatility to Rebecca, not just for the service desk but the wider institution.
“Management wanted a solution for staff to book hot desks. I highlighted that TOPdesk could be used.” While a large proportion of UCA IT staff no longer have a desk and are considered remote workers, the institution recognized the need to create space for these employees to come in when required.
“Through TOPdesk, we have set up hot desks as assets which staff can book via a tile in the Self-Service Portal. We want to ensure that people are confident when visiting site that there is a space available for them to work safely.”
The feature is also being used by service desk operators to manage bookings, for example to fix an IT problem or pick-up/drop-off a piece of hardware.
“All operators have access to the planner to book appointments. However, to limit the number of individuals coming onto campus, they triage callers to see if the problem can be resolved remotely first. If staff must come in, Events and Actions are used to send out an automatic email with the booking reference and a set of guidelines for visiting the service desk. Meaning there is less risk of contamination.”
This process is being used at all campuses and Rebecca says the response has been unanimously positive.
The future: an essential solution
Using the template that UCA have built for Reservations Management, they have the capacity to onboard other departments going forward. “I believe that Estates, in particular, could really benefit from being able to schedule repairs, for example. Then, it would be great to onboard students to TOPdesk so that they can utilize the booking systems themselves.”
Rebecca says that going forward the Reservations Management feature will be essential when it comes to adapting to new ways of working. She offered some advice for other institutions: “Have a clear plan in place. This isn’t something you can implement overnight. It will take time, but by understanding its value and who needs to use it, you can really utilize the feature.”