What is 2nd/3rd line SharePoint support in construction? Do you need it ? Should you outsource it?
SharePoint support – easy as 1 2 3
The IT Team has long been the cornerstone of many companies. Now, thanks to Covid-19, your organisation depends so heavily on IT that new vulnerabilities and demands have put enormous pressure on IT to support, maintain and improve your systems.
In our recent experience in the construction sector, among a plethora of other responsibilities, the IT department has a central role to play in looking after document management and knowledge management systems, usually based on SharePoint. As a result, members of the team generally have strong SharePoint proficiency and expertise. Systems are often supported by a service desk approach, which centralises information and support management to handle queries and operational problems about IT-related processes, policies, systems, and usage.
In order to have a more structured and managed approach to IT problems, it is increasingly common to break support down into a 3-tiered process; where there is a first line, second line and third line support team. This is where employees provide different levels of support depending on their knowledge and experience. This type of system is popular as it allows a clear escalation process and effective resolution of problems.
However, it is becoming increasingly common for companies to outsource their 2nd/3rd line support to external companies, like us here at EasyShare. There are many reasons and benefits for this, which we will discuss shortly.
What does 1st, 2nd and 3rd line SharePoint support look like?
- 1st line
Employees in a 1st line role are usually the first level of support, and the first point of contact for users who need their assistance; in this role employees provide basic support for simple issues. They analyse and troubleshoot problems with standard fixes, and if they can’t fix it they will pass it on to the 2nd line support team with as much information as possible. The first line team will deal with general issues such as fixing hardware such a laptops and printers as well as managing basic issues in SharePoint such as user creation, managing content, access and some Microsoft 365 administration.
- 2nd line
2nd line support technicians come into play when a problem is escalated to them by the 1st line, as they do not have the expertise to solve the problem. 2nd line SharePoint support employees have a more focused SharePoint knowledge, and understanding of how SharePoint works technically. Sometimes 2nd and 3rd line support are very similar, amalgamated roles.
- 3rd line
The 3rd line SharePoint support team is the top level of support that you can get in the three-tiered support model. 3rd line technicians are usually experts in their field, in this case SharePoint. They are in charge of fixing the most complicated IT issues through their greater knowledge and experience of SharePoint and how it works, crucially how it works with other systems and across Microsoft 365. They not only solve problems but they make sure the system is maintained, supported and that there are pre-emptive solutions in place. Furthermore, they also work on bigger, longer term maintenance and improvement projects for example, the migration of the document management system to SharePoint online from on-premise.
Why outsource ?
Outsourcing has become a permanent feature across many companies, especially where it has allowed for cheaper and more effective ways of working. Within the construction industry, many companies outsource their 2nd and 3rd line SharePoint support staff as they don’t have the knowledge and resources internally or haven’t the budget to keep experts ‘on the bench’ waiting for problems to arise. In the article “ How the finance function can improve resilience through outsourcing” in EY this year they talked about several key benefits to outsourcing including this flexibility:
“The flexibility to scale a particular operation up or down depending on changes to the environment is significant. The need to bring people in when the workload increases and to downsize a team when required is considerably easier when outsourced, as there typically aren’t issues around onboarding or making redundancies.”
Another cost saving, aside from lower staffing overheads, is not having to purchase and maintain the hardware and infrastructure for a full-service desk – now presumably staffed 100% remotely for most organisations. Furthermore, it allows your internal staff to focus on their job and pass on work so that there are quicker resolution times.
Outsourcing your IT support is a particularly useful model during the coronavirus pandemic, as there is a lot of uncertainty and outsourcing means you can scale your operations up and down whenever you need.
How can we help ?
EasyShare are experts in set up, support and maintenance of SharePoint systems, with particular experience in the construction industry.
Some of our services:
- SharePoint consultancy
- SharePoint development
- SharePoint licensing
- Office 365 migration
- Office 365 consultancy, licensing and support
- Cloud adoption
- Cybersecurity services
- IT managed services
- Teams roll-out
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