When can L2 bypass service desk & contact end user?

An open discussion on issues related directly or primarily to the service or help desk.
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Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:00 pm

Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:37 pm


Just wanted to know some views on this.

We have a level 1 team (SD/SPoC) and multiple level 2 teams based on their skill set eg. desktop support, database, network, server etc. There is a general understanding that L1 team is for user communication and L2 remains invisible. L2 should fix the issues, assign it back to L1. L1 should confirm with end user before resolving the tickets.

CASE1: However, in practice there are always some incidents where level 2 team needs additional information from the end user or during complex troubleshooting, level 2 team has to work with end user. In such scenario we have shared opinion in the organisation... some believe that we should allow L2 to bypass L1 & get in touch with end user (as L1 is just a hop in this case) and some believe that L1 should always do the end user communication. Both thoughts have pros & cons. L2 teams need CLEAR instructions. They want to know, should they contact end user directly or not? If yes, under what conditions or can they contact any time?

CASE2: Cases when L2 is almost sure that provided resolution will fix the issue, they assign the ticket to L1. L1 confirms with end user & close it. However, in cases when L2 is not sure or want to follow a sequence of steps, they get in touch with end user. If issue is solved, L2 resolves the ticket. Now, L1 teams wants that even when L2 has the confirmation from end user, ticket need to be assigned to L1 for closer.

If I take holistic view, it doesn't matter to me who "resolves" the ticket. However, if I am one of the team members, I would really need answers for all these situations and some non value steps can be avoided (if they are non value add)

Please share your views...


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Sat Sep 10, 2011 8:27 am

If you clarify your thinking on this it may become clearer.

Even though the level one team consists of the staff on the service desk, that does not mean that the service desk and the level one team are synonymous.

Primary communication with customers and users is by the service desk, primary incident resolution is by the teams (level one/two/whatever). As you point out, there is often a need for other communication to effect investigation, diagnosis, testing etc. The less nodes that this dialogue passes through the less likely it is to become corrupted or delayed or mis-understood.

Enabling level two staff to interact directly with users/customers in carrying out investigation/resolution activities seems eminently sensible. It should not prevent the communication from being logged if that is required. There are even times when you need to facilitate supplier staff to speak directly to your users/customers to help with investigations etc.

Managing sign-off if a separate issue and you may want that to be done exclusively by the service desk. that is a matter of policy for you. But even that does not mean that the engineer working on the problem will not need to in effect have the user/customer confirm the outcome of his/her actions even just to be able to know that the thing is fixed.
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