What Is a ‘Tech Bar’ and Why Are Companies Creating Them?

Sam Osbourne September 2, 2019

You may have heard of the term ‘Tech Bar’ before, but do you know what one is? A Tech Bar provides employees and students with a streamlined, digitally-enhanced and customer-facing approach to their IT needs, including device repairs, tech advice and overall servicing.

Unlike traditional, centralized head office processes, Tech Bars are positioned in one physical location, and enable IT support workers to provide a better, more efficient service. They also give employees full transparency around wait-times.

In even the most digitally-advanced, tech-driven of organizations, if your computer were to have a spontaneous meltdown, there’s often very little you can do about it besides contacting the IT services desk…and waiting.

One of the main pain points people come up against when dealing with the internal IT services desk isn’t the service itself – it’s the not knowing when they’ll be served that gets to them.

And when things turn pear-shaped, the IT services team often bears the brunt of the blame. They’re overstretched and under-resourced, managing multiple inboxes and jumping from problem to problem.

Pinpointing a need for a smarter, more efficient approach to the traditional IT services desk, many organizations are establishing tech bars at their head offices.cartoon people video chatting

What is a tech bar?

Deloitte’s 2018 Global CIO Survey revealed that the second most important area of focus for IT leaders over the next three years is ‘building high-performing teams’ – a problem 63% of respondents admitted they struggle with.

But, in order for this to happen, IT leaders need to take a different approach to how their internal IT services desks operate.

Tech bars are modern, relaxed IT hubs in your head office building that provide employees seeking device repairs, advice and overall servicing a similar experience that they’d expect when visiting a store.

When done right, tech bars offer a seamless, personalized and time-efficient experience for both the IT teams and the employees who require support.

What does a tech bar involve?

Besides a few fancy couches and a pull-up banner, a truly effective tech bar empowers your IT team to provide a better, more transparent service to employees within your organization – and that means having the right Digital Queuing and Appointment Scheduling Software in place like you’d expect to see in a store.

By placing employees seeking immediate support into a digital queue, your IT support desk can seamlessly attend to all incoming requests, and organize them in terms of priority. This approach also means employees are given a queue position, an estimated wait time and are updated with SMS and email notifications. You should also consider adding a chatbot to your IT Service deck to support your team.

And appointment scheduling software enables employees to book in time with your IT team beforehand, which not only manages their expectations, it allows you to allocate your internal resources accordingly, and assign particular problems to the people with the right technical expertise, resulting in a much better service.

Organizations with tech bars at their head office benefit from:

Happier, more productive colleagues

By installing a tech bar at your head office, your colleagues within your business will have a familiar place to go to when they need support. They can schedule a time to get their IT-related issues resolved – such as popping in before their first meeting, or dropping their device off before heading out for the night.

According to employee experience management tool, HappySignals, tech bars have the highest user satisfaction rating (88%) among the most common support channels, and the least amount of lost work time (half the lost time as with phone support, and a third of the lost time reported for email or portal support).

Higher employee satisfaction within the IT team

Rather than filtering through multiple inboxes and managing outdated ticketing systems, your IT team has a clear idea of their schedule for the day and can plan their workloads around it.

This also means that they won’t be continuously bombarded with questions that lie outside their area of expertise, nor will they all be needed at the IT support desk from 7am to 7pm every day.

A Tech Bar gives the IT services team a friendly face

Instead of being hidden away behind their computers, your team will be able to truly showcase their skills and expertise in a casual, friendly space.

With this face-to-face contact, and with the right software to provide support, your IT team will naturally build better, more understanding relationships with colleagues throughout the business.

Verint’s Tech Bar package is an innovative bundle of digital queueing, appointment scheduling and event management solutions . It’s cost effective and quick to get up and running.

How to provide a virtual ‘Tech Bar’ service to employees

Learn more about how we can help improve your IT support productivity by getting in touch today.