I'm working in R&D of a multinational chemical company. The standard process for any IT related issue is to call global helpdesk, which is located somewhere in the globe.

Their reputation in the company is quite low due to several factors. I'm not an IT professional, but I've quite good experience, I try to avoid calling them, and ask help only in cases where it's absolutely necessary (admin rights, access to databases ...).

Whenever they solve an issue, they ask users to rate their service, if rating is lower then 3/5, then explanation is also required and an automatic escalation ticket is opened. This ticket is generally dealt by the local IT manager.

Many cases I've complained on the quality of the service (time to solve the issue, lack of knowledge of personnel ...), but I never get real answer on my question.

Now I've contacted again local IT manager asking status of one of my escalated issues, he looked after it, and told he don't understand my issue, because "the original problem is solved".

This is our constant end point, I state that I'm not happy with the quality of the service, and he replies that the issue is solved, and he doesn't understand my escalation. (I've tried to explain it to him several times, through e-mail, phone, and also in person (not a format occascion, just meeting him in the office)).

What can I do here?

My last option would be to involve my line manager (located in another region) and my regions R&D manager (who has more influence on local IT), but I try to avoid so drastical ways as far as possible.


it seems my message is not clear, I try to summarize:

  • I've an IT related issue, helpdesk solves it, then - after closing - sends me an automatic e-mail, asking my feedback; if the feedback is negative, the system creates an escalation ticket automatically
  • I consider this situation to be similar to a feedback e.g. on a hotel booking site:
    People go to hotels, leave the hotel then write they experience, they stay is over, they don't expect anything more from the hotel, just give feedback, so the hotel can improve where necessary (of course, also they advice other travelers, but that's a different story)
  • my feedback is "I'm very unsatisfied, because it was slow / agent was too rude..." (the ticket is closed, so the issue is solved, I'm rating the service, AFTER the process) - still my IT manager says "the issue is solved, I don't understand your problem", and there are similar comments too. Do I have misunderstanding about the process?

3 Answers 3


Frustration with helpdesks is a pretty common issue. At a previous employer the helpdesk was more commonly known as the "helpless desk."

Many cases I've complained on the quality of the service (time to solve the issue, lack of knowledge of personnel ...), but I never get real answer on my question

Probably the most important part is to not actively show frustration, except as an absolute last resort. Most people don't enjoy helping people who are difficult to work with, demanding, or obviously frustrated with them. Most people also enjoy helping people who are nice, easy to work with, and generally pleasant people. This is even more important the more times you escalate issues.

Anyways. Focus on what you can change, first. It sounds like your communication to this IT manager isn't clear enough for them to understand why your issue isn't addressed.

Make sure the ticket is clear (there are a lot of resources out there, that's just one). In your case, make sure to explain the "why" as well.

And ask why. Setup a meeting with the IT manager. What can you do to make your request more clear? What parts are confusing? Why doesn't the local manager understand your escalation? Why does he think it's closed? Don't walk into this meeting without an agenda -- and "proving them wrong" shouldn't be on it.

If you have a history with them it might be worth asking point-blank: "how can I write tickets that are more clear to avoid issues like this in the future?"

Try to document this somehow in meeting notes, so you can share them if needed when you...

My last option would be to involve my line manager

Hopefully your manager and you have somewhat regular meetings. This difficulty is exactly what managers are for, helping their employees remove roadblocks.

If your conversation didn't work with the IT manager, discuss it with your manager. This is why meeting notes are important to be able to share with them with your direct manager and discuss.

and my regions R&D manager (who has more influence on local IT)

Avoid depending on this person without first having a conversation with your direct manager.


What you should do is escalate before the issue is fixed when they are reacting too slowly.

However when you do a negative report after, then when the manager says to you "Hey what's the problem, the issues is fixed" then you should remind him that you are not asked to give feedback before the issue is completed and that the escalation was automatic from the system. Then you tell him you want to see it fixed for the next person who has a problem and describe what things you think he needs to fix as their manager.

You are providing feedback to help the system get better and he is telling you it doesn't need to be better. You need to explain to him that yes this one individual problem is fixed, but I have these issues every single time I deal with your employees. Frankly, it often helps to involve a senior manager in fixing this sort of problem. People will ignore worker level people who complain and then take action when a senior person complains.


I agree with the comment made by @Joe Strazzere that your communication may not be clear enough for the local IT manager to understand.

However, it also appears that there are structural issues inherent in the service desk function of your company. Fundamentally, the mission of the help desk is to assist employees with IT issues they are facing. It is a service - oriented unit.

As a service - oriented function within your company, ideally there should be SLAs agreed upon for each type of issue. It is difficult to meaningfully complain that service is poor when concrete, quantitative metrics as to what is excellent service have not been defined and documented. With defined SLAs, no longer does your complaint that service was untimely seem arbitrary, because there is a documented definition of timeliness of service. SLAs also tend to increase service desk accountability, as they now know they have concrete goals they will be held accountable for.

If the SLA is not met, there should be a escalation process, along with a RCA process as to why service quality is inadequate. You mention that the help desk employees sometimes have trouble understanding your questions. Other than a communication issue on your part, it is also possible that these employees are not trained adequately for their role, which is again a structural / process issue.

It does not appear process monitoring / improvement is part of your job, so don't push too hard, but do voice your concerns to whatever level of management you feel have the most influence on local IT.

  • 1
    SLAs can also be a trap. I worked one place where our IT closed all tickets to meet the SLA even if the problem wasn't fixed and the system would not allow you to reopen, you had to put in a new ticket. So they looked great to their manager reviewing the SLAs even though sometimes we had to put in 3-4 tickets to get a problem actually solved and only rarely got something fixed on the first try..
    – HLGEM
    Jun 6, 2017 at 14:29

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