center238125 Contents TOC o “1-3” h z u P1

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Contents
TOC o “1-3” h z u P1: Describe the activities within a technical support role PAGEREF _Toc515356568 h 2P2: Perform diagnosis of simple faults with an identified computer system and implement solutions PAGEREF _Toc515356569 h 7P3: Document faults and solutions for computer systems PAGEREF _Toc515356570 h 9P4: Communicate technical advice and guidance to an identified non-technical client PAGEREF _Toc515356571 h 10P5: Present technical advice and guidance to an identified technical client PAGEREF _Toc515356572 h 11M1: Analyse the communication considerations used for differing client types PAGEREF _Toc515356573 h 12M2: Investigate complex faults with an identified computer system and implement solutions PAGEREF _Toc515356574 h 13M3: Measure the effectiveness of technical support provision PAGEREF _Toc515356575 h 14D1: Test computer system post fault resolution and interpret results PAGEREF _Toc515356576 h 14D2: Analyse trends from troubleshooting technical issues and make recommendations to reduce repeat occurrences PAGEREF _Toc515356577 h 14
LO1: Understand the role of technical support
P1: Describe the activities within a technical support roleIntro
I am currently a Belfast met IT Tech apprentice. In the Belfast met we are doing Tech support training and learning the ins and outs of IT support roles.

Help Desk Support
Help desk support is usually the first level of response and answer the most common questions. They do not handle the more complicated queries and will refer you to another division. They will monitor and maintain the computer systems and networks in an organisation. People will come to the helpdesk support for password problems, viruses and email problems etc. their tasks can include installing and configuring computer systems. They will also be able to help diagnose hardware or software issues. They will be able to do this on the phone or in person. Technical support is a vital part of a company or organisation to ensure everything runs smoothly and everything is operational and fixed in good time. To work in help desk support you need to be:
Logical thinker
Good at problem Solving
Technical knowledge
Good interpersonal and customer care skills
A great understanding of the software and hardware your customers are using.

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Desktop Support
The second line of support is often thought to be physical support but that is not always the case. It can be a specialised team using remote access software to solve any problems. The second line of support will deal with minor issues that the first line couldn’t solve, such as printer issues or peripheral issues. To work in desktop support, you need to be:Logical thinker
Good at problem Solving
Technical knowledge
Good interpersonal and customer care skills
A great understanding of the software and hardware your customers are using.

Experience dealing with issues in a physical state.

Specialist
This is the third line of support and is a specialized team or individual that will be sent to fix bigger problems such as network or server failures. The more experienced specialists are highly regarded and are only dispatched when the first and second line of support fails to resolve the issue. To work in specialized support, you need to be:
Logical thinker
Good at problem Solving
Technical knowledge
Good interpersonal and customer care skills
A great understanding of the software and hardware your customers are using.

Highly experienced in the field required
Fully qualified
Problem Manager
*Problem Management is the process responsible for managing the lifecycle of all problems that happen or could happen in an IT service*
Problems managers analyse incidents and problems to prevent the occurrence of further damage. They send out teams of maintenance engineers to fix and audit the issues. To work in Problems Management, you need to be:
Good interpersonal and customer care skills
Great management skills
Time Management
Data Logging/Auditing skills
Maintenance engineer
A maintenance engineer is a person or persons who are sent out to fix the problems that have been diagnosed. They will replace are repair hardware and configure software. To work as a maintenance engineer, you need to be:
Good at problem Solving
A great understanding of the software and hardware your customers are using.

Good at troubleshooting
Good at auditing
Ability to work fast and under pressure
Aware of all health and safety procedures
Good eyesight
Software / On-screen help
Usually the first place you look for help will be the manual or index of software or forums for help. Help with software is usually accessed by pressing F1 and extra help can be used by accessing forums and other webpages.
User guides and manuals
These guides usually come with a piece of software or hardware in a state full or stateless form.

On site technician/help desk
An on-site technician and help desk are actual members of an IT maintenance team who are trained and have knowledge with the software and hardware. This is the most helpful as they can physically diagnose the problem.

Remote Support
Support can access the machine from in or outside an organisation taking control of the machine to fix any faults or issues. This type of support is very helpful and useful but can become a high security Risk.

Call Out Support
It is rather expensive to have an engineer come out to fix the problem although it is helpful it is time consuming and the cost is sometimes to much to pay for the solution. That is why help desk support is usually first call so they can diagnose a problem to ensure calling in support is necessary. Although this method is expensive it is less expensive than paying for a full time technician.

On-Line Support
Online support has many different varieties including Forums, Bulletin Boards, and FAQ’s. Forums are very useful in this industry because somebody before you will most likely have had the same problem and will have posted a solution online in a forum or bulletin board. This is sometimes time consuming and not always reliable, it is free to use so it is cost effective. The FAQ section of a site which owns the product you are faulting will list commonly asked queries about the product it is likely your problem and solution will be mentioned there.

Lines of support
First
First Line support is usually taken place by the Helpdesk Support. This type of support is usually phone based. The technician on the phone will ask the client questions to try and determine the fault. They will determine your skill level and try and explain the solution in an easy way for you to understand. They will also be able to take remote access if granted to help you with your problem. This being the first line of support may not be able to solve the issue and you may need to have the second line of support give their skills.

Second
This is the when physical support is met by IT Technicians or Engineers. This is different to First line support as somebody physically diagnoses and fixes the problem. It does not always have to be in person it can sometimes take place via remote desktop access. This allows the engineer to diagnose and fix the problem from their own station. Second line support although can be done via remote access is usually done in person. Second line has more experience and skills which makes them better. They have to be experienced with the computer hardware and software.

Third
This type is usually done by an individual or group with the title of specialist. This is because they are top of their field. These individuals or team only appear when a serious problem occurs. They are dispatched in serious need for example *a server failure at a big company*. This would be a serious problem needing fixed fast and a network specialist would be sent out. To be in this category you need to be the best in your field and be very experienced and qualified.

Processing faults
When dealing with customers needing assistance you need to follow a protocol or step process. Within a company you will need to ask for their credentials as authorization. You will continue to check what SLA (service level agreement) they are entitled to. You will check to see when they last contacted the helpdesk and what support was given in the past which may help determine the problem. The helpdesk provider will create a fault log so that the information is there for future issues.

All calls to the helpdesk are first come first serve to reduce frustration and prevent longer ques. After taking the initial call the problems will be prioritise the problems due to importance of the issue to get the more important problems running smoothly.

Prioritising the request is done in three ways,*How critical is the problem to the whole company**If Its only one PC how important is the fault*,*How long has the user been waiting for it to fixed*, It is done to ensure that the important faults are fixed first.

Client types
The type of client you have is very important. This is because their ability and knowledge will better help you to find and diagnose a problem and make it easier to fix. This is the difference between a simple phone call and telling them they need to reinstall windows as theirs is corrupt and letting them do it by themselves, versus having to remote access their computer to download the files needed onto a USB and walking them through it step by step.

Some clients can be very aggressive and agitated due to the problem and will be very impatient this will make your job difficult as they will be pushing you for the solution when they may need an engineer sent out. The different type of clients determine how the support will be handled Depending on your skill level and the problem type it can be done on the phone, remote access, and sending out an engineer.
In an IT support role you will need to have good interpersonal skills. This will help you determine how to explain and fix the problem. For example a software engineer or an elderly person. The level of detail you use and the way you explain will be different.

The environment is also very important. If it is a company relying on the equipment they will more than likely have an engineer sent out but to personal uses the matter will be dealt with online. They will use remote access software such as TeamViewer.
Fault Logs
Fault logs are used to help diagnose a problem and prevent future problems. They are used to identify recurring faults and to identify new faults after a patch has been made. This makes it easier to identify what has caused the problem and makes it easier to fix.

Final Fault Reports should include Initial report, corrections, resolved issues and retesting. Initial report is the information given to you by the client. This information is used to determine the corrections to take. The IT technician will troubleshoot the problem to try and find the problem. Once the problem has a diagnosis the corrections will be set in place. If there is no change the technician will have to troubleshoot more. If the diagnosis was correct and the solution the computer or machine will be tested and retested to ensure no other faults occur.
Policies/Procedures
Tech support teams need to follow policies and procedures to ensure that everything runs smoothly. There are also legal requirements such as the data protection act which ensures that everyone’s data is kept private and held privately. The tech support team have to follow protocol to ensure the data is handled correctly.

P2: Perform diagnosis of simple faults with an identified computer system and implement solutionsCpu z
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Speccy
304800036258500This is a hardware information tool by piriform. It enables the user to see the stats about the graphics card, CPU, RAM and power supply etc. Speccy is free and highly recommended tool. It has a Pro version for more advanced features.
How monitor
453390029654500Is a freeware hardware monitoring software which reads voltage, temperature, and fan speed? This software tool is capable of gathering the temperature on all cores of the cpu and can display the gpu temperature also. This is helpful to ensure your computer is safe.

There are different types of faults:
Simple
These types of faults can usually be solved by first line support and are usually problems such as faulty connections or incorrect computer settings. A simple fault would be for example a peripheral not plugged in properly.

Complex
These types of faults require second or third line support technicians. These faults are more difficult as changing a hardware component may also push a driver update or installation which is more complicated for standard users. The more complicated problems usually are compatibility issues between hardware and software but can be anything from corrupt files to incorrectly configured directories.

Interlinked
These faults take more experienced engineers usually third line to fix. When dealing with interlinked faults it is important to test and retest after the patch is initiated to ensure that no other faults arise. When fixing an interlinked fault you are likely to create more faults and will take a lot of troubleshooting. An example of this would be a corrupt hard drive which could make problems with booting.

Diagnostic techniques change when dealing with different faults. With more technical faults using software to scan the computer and monitor the motherboard and hardware will be able to tell you where there is a fault. This would be useful if the computer was running very slow and you were able to see that the CPU temperature was very high. This tells you that the CPU is under pressure and may need replaced. In a simple fault you wouldn’t need special software but simple IT skills.

There are different ways of diagnosing problems, and the way you do this will depend on the type of fault. Software and hardware faults are very different. There will be a software fault or a hardware fault. To troubleshoot the problem of software and some hardware issues using another program to monitor the computer’s hardware statistics will help find the fault. Scanning the computer with monitoring software will bring back detailed statistics on hardware and software. These tools will help show you where the computer struggles and what makes it struggle. This will tell you if the software is glitchy and not running well on the PC or if your hardware has a fault.
Finding problems can be difficult if faults are interlinked. This is the most complicated fault type and can have many faults surrounded around one main fault. When fixing a fault, you may upset something and create a new problem, therefore after faults are found and fixed a test is done to ensure the computer runs perfectly. This will all be logged in the fault report.

A standard operating procedure or SOP is a step by step set of instructions set by the company to help staff follow complex operations. These procedures are important for various reasons. One of the reasons is to ensure that the job is carried out correctly and accurately. Other reasons include keeping yourself safe encase there is damage to the PC etc, by using fault logs it is easy to determine who was last with the computer as well as what they done to fix it. Using fault logs as a procedure protects the employees from being wrongly accused of damage of property. Using these procedures helps ensure that the quality of work is up to a high standard. The last reason is that these protocols will keep the company within the law. Some examples of these procedures would be:
Ask client if any files need saved before trying to fix the problem
Ask the client about the problems they were facing
Write down machine serial number
Write fault report
Test and retest after fault “fix”
Using the SOP system is a good way to utilize all your staff and improve the speed and effectiveness of your workforce.

“When I click the mouse, it doesn’t seem to work properly”
The mouse is not working properly so you will have to troubleshoot the problem. The first step is to check if the mouse is plugged in. this may seem simple but is a common fault people have. The next step would be to check the ports as the port may have been broken. If those have failed it may be a problem in the settings as the mouse buttons may be flipped.

Revert the settings back and use the built in test clicker.

Fault Report
Type of equipment
Mouse
Serial/model number
FVCGHGGGTTRE34EF
Location
Human Resources
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Mouse won’t work (clicking)
For Office use
Fault number
001
Priority
low
Estimated response time
1 hour
Action taken
Changed mouse settings
“I can’t get the @ symbol to work when I’m trying to send an email”
The keyboard is most likely set to the American settings as it has flipped the keys and the @ symbol will be located at the number 2 key.

Fault Report
Type of equipment
keyboard
Serial/model number
GVCGH7KGDTRE34EF
Location
Admin
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
@ symbol doesn’t work
For Office use
Fault number
002
Priority
low
Estimated response time
1 hour
Action taken
Changed keyboard layout
“I start my computer every morning, go make coffee, and it runs some other OS which is not windows”
The computer is most likely booting from a USB and a simple fix would be to go to the bios and change the boot order. This way it will boot from the ROM chipset.

Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP Desktop
Serial/model number
DKLLRTU665THDGF666HND
Location
Financial
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Booting wrong OS
For Office use
Fault number
003
Priority
medium
Estimated response time
2 hour
Action taken
Change boot criteria
“the screen is black but the computer is on”
For this fault there are a few reasons. One of the reasons is that the monitor is not plugged in. Another is that the monitor is not turned on and the final reason is that the monitor is broken. There may be a faulty cable so before declaring the monitor broken its best to try a new cable.

Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP Monitor
Serial/model number
P201
Location
Financial
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Monitor screen is black
For Office use
Fault number
004
Priority
low
Estimated response time
1 hour
Action taken
Check the cable
“Computer is very slow”
The computer can be slow for many reasons but some of the most common reasons are, viruses, faulty RAM and storage space. Having a virus on your computer holds many issues one of which is making your computer very slow. To find out if you have a virus using a anti-virus software will help scan your computer.

Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP desktop
Serial/model number
CL009
Location
Human resources
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Computer is slow
For Office use
Fault number
005
Priority
High
Estimated response time
3 hour
Action taken
Scan for viruses and check Ram
P3: Document faults and solutions for computer systemsThe first fault was fixed by changing the mouse settings from inverted back to normal. This was found out by troubleshooting the other solutions. Every attempt to solving the problem such as inverting the settings should be logged in the event of future faults that may be linked. It can be stored digitally and manually. The information that should be kept would be the name of the technician the workstation he was fixing all his troubleshooting attempts, times and date. The date and time are added for auditing purposes.
The mouse was not clicking properly
I checked the cable encase it was lose
The mouse was on and functional
I noticed when I clicked it was like a right click
I went to the mouse settings
I flipped the click settings as I noticed they were opposite
I tested the mouse and it worked fine
Parts required: none
Cost: £0
Start Time: 9:15am
End Time: 9:21
Job number: 001
Fault Report
Type of equipment
Mouse
Serial/model number
FVCGHGGGTTRE34EF
Location
Human Resources
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Mouse won’t work (clicking)
For Office use
Fault number
001
Priority
low
Estimated response time
30 min
Action taken
Flip mouse settings
The second fault was a keyboard issue and was easily configured back to normal. It’s common for some keyboards to come stock as American style as well as some OS coming that way too. The technician needs to right a report. He will need to retest the problem to ensure its solved and no other problems occurred. The fault logs need to include the initial report, corrections taken, issues resolved and retests.
@ symbol not working on the keyboard
I tried getting typing the @ symbol but had no luck
I used a different shift key in case one was faulty
I tested other known button layouts “shift, 2” which made the @ symbol appear
I navigated to keyboard settings and set the keyboard layout to UK instead of its previous setting
I tested the keyboard which worked perfectly
Parts required: none
Cost:£0
Start Time: 9:30
End Time: 9:40
Job number: 002
Fault Report
Type of equipment
keyboard
Serial/model number
GVCGH7KGDTRE34EF
Location
Admin
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
@ symbol doesn’t work
For Office use
Fault number
002
Priority
low
Estimated response time
30 min
Action taken
Change keyboard layout
The third fault was easily fixed by changing the boot options in the BIOS. This was one of the harder faults to troubleshoot as it is a more difficult fault. The USB device plugged into the computer held a bootable operating system on it which took priority in the bios resulting in the wrong OS appearing.

PC was booting incorrectly
I checked the OS installed
I booted the PC and noticed it booted incorrectly
I repeated this process a few times
I noticed there was a usb drive plugged in
I took the usb drive out and the computer booted fine
I navigated to the Bios and entered the boot options
I changed the priority of the boot options from the usb drive to the PC
The computer will now boot perfectly
Parts required: none
Cost:£0
Start Time: 10am
End Time: 10:35am
Job number: 003
Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP Desktop
Serial/model number
DKLLRTU665THDGF666HND
Location
Financial
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Booting wrong OS
For Office use
Fault number
003
Priority
medium
Estimated response time
1 hour
Action taken
Change bios boot priorities
The fourth fault is one of the most common faults as people assume when its doesn’t work its broken it was just the case of plugging it in. this fault has potential to be complicated but by troubleshooting more likely options it narrows down.

The monitor was black
I checked the power cable to check if it was plugged in
I done the same for the HDMI cable
Both where plugged in fine and the light on the monitor was on
The screen still remained black
I checked if the monitor was set to HDMI which it was
I decided that the monitor was broke
Parts required: monitor
Cost:£87
Start Time: 10:50am
End Time: 11:30am
Job number: 004
Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP Monitor
Serial/model number
P201
Location
Financial
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Monitor screen is black
For Office use
Fault number
004
Priority
high
Estimated response time
25
Action taken
Get a new monitor
The last fault was resolved by running anti-virus software. By troubleshooting the problem it was discovered that the RAM was fine and storage was average. The last thing checked was for viruses and 3 Trojans and a worm was found. This would have immensely decreased the speed of the computer.

Computer is very slow
I checked the storage space which was fine
I checked the hardware RAM to see if it was lose
Both didn’t solve anything so I ran an anti-virus software
3 trojans where found
I removed the virus and got the PC working properly again
Parts required: none
Cost:£0
Start Time: 12pm
End Time: 4pm
Job number: 005
Fault Report
Type of equipment
HP desktop
Serial/model number
CL009
Location
Human resources
Username/email address
Dorrito Sanchez
Description of fault
Computer is slow
For Office use
Fault number
005
Priority
high
Estimated response time
1 hour
Action taken
Remove 3 trojan viruses
The fault log sheet must include the job reference number a description of the fault and how it was resolved.
Nature of faults
Hardware
PC
MAC
Printer
Server
Hub / switch
Cabling
Telecomms
Software
Operating system
Application
The priority of the fault must be logged as to ensure that the more important faults are handled first. An example would be part of the telecommunication going down, this would affect a large aspect of the company.

Records
It is important to keep certain records for many reasons. The information may become useful in the future to help diagnose problems with a workstation. This happens if the fault is interlinked or if the technician has changed certain settings causing the new fault. Keeping record of what was done helps determine who caused the problem as well as easier ways of fixing them.
These records can be kept in the form of a fault log or document with all the information relating to the job and the work done to the workstation. The fault Log will have to include a few things. It will need to have included in the report, the type of equipment, serial number, location, technician details and description of the fault. These need to be documented to allow for auditing and to help in case of future problems. The fault logs and troubleshooting logs are kept so they know who was working on the problem what they did and when. This allows the business to create an accurate documentation surrounding the problem. The logs also tell the business if the technician has done anything wrong or areas in which they need more training. If the equipment gets damaged they will have a reference to when it was last in working condition. P4: Communicate technical advice and guidance to an identified non-technical clientWhen dealing with a client it is very important to determine their skill level. This will tell you how to deal with the problem. some people will have a better understanding than others. By determining the skill level of the client, it will tell you how to fix the problem. Ways of fixing the problem could include Remote access, Guides or manuals, on site technician, email or chat support or external helpdesk support. Some of those examples like the external helpdesk support will be introduced only for more serious faults. If you are dealing with an experienced client you may be able to tell them the solution on the phone and they will fix it themselves, but when dealing with an unexperienced user you may need to use remote access software to fix the problem for the client. This would be done when the client doesn’t understand what you are explaining to them. Also when choosing the method to fix the issue you will need to take into consideration the importance of the fault, how complex it is and how long it will take to fix among many others.

Face to Face
This is the easiest when dealing with a client as you can read their body language and you can decide on their skill level. This will help you fix the problem by asking them questions based on their knowledge allowing you to find the fault quicker.

Phone
On the phone it is easy to interact with the client and base their skill level. The call can be recorded for future use when logged in the fault report. This call can be used by future technicians to maybe help solve their issue.

Website/Forum
Using the manufacturers FAQ section to help solve problems cuts out all interaction and is very helpful as it’s always up to date and other users will likely have had the same problem as your client.

When dealing with an unexperienced user you need to use different techniques or methods. You do this to help put across the information in a way that they will understand. You ensure that the documentation is brief and easy to understand to help them grasp what you are saying.

P5: Present technical advice and guidance to an identified technical client
Using more technical language for experienced users helps settle the situation. It stops the client getting agitated if they are told how to do something they already know. By speaking to the client in a more technical language it is easy to explain the problem to them in a way that they may be able to solve the problem without seeking more help.

For experienced users you would use different methods or techniques to approach the situation. You would have a longer detailed documentation that is a lot more accurate to ensure that they understand what needs to be done. You give more detail to make it easier to visualize and expand on.

M1: Analyse the communication considerations used for differing client types
Clients can contact tech support a few different ways. They could use the manufacturer’s webpage to get in contact with a tech support Engineer. If in a large company, you may have a helpdesk you can call for support this was very useful for larger companies to ensure that the faults are fixed faster. Using E-mail to contact tech support for less important issues is another method of contact but is not often used as it takes longer for results. In a small business a message board can be used to leave a notice of the fault for a technician to see.

Tech support will communicate with their clients in many ways. They could use
Remote desktop
A very common method for tech support is using remote access software to enter the client’s computer. This is popular as it allows the technician to fix the fault themselves which is helpful if the client has low technical skills. This is also easy for the technician to communicate with the client by showing them what they are doing.

Phone
Using the phone to communicate is useful and popular in tech support but can be difficult depending on the client. If the client doesn’t know what they are doing you may find it difficult to explain and fix the issue. The tech support staff will need to try and use language that the client understands to try and help solve the problem.

FaceTime
FaceTime is slightly better than using phone calls as it lets you see the client and helps you determine their skillset and situation.

E-mail
Although email can be used in tech support it is not very popular as you can’t read your client at all and will find it difficult troubleshooting the problem. It also takes a long time to get the problem resolved
Face to Face
This is by far the best tech support method as you can see the client’s body language as well as the client machine. This allows you to get the most information from the client and their machine.

Text
This is a harder way of communication and longer method often used on sites of big companies. It is not often used in the workplace as it is hard to determine the type of fault. This is most commonly used on big company’s sites as the problems that arise are usually software issues and are easily diagnosed.

A tech support officer needs to have excellent interpersonal skills to ensure they are effective at their job. They will need to be experienced in their field and fully qualified. They will need to be well spoken and literate to ensure they come across clear and accurate. They will need to be patient and calm to ensure the clients are not mistreated. They must have a good wpm rate (word per minute) to ensure they will reply fast.

M2: Investigate complex faults with an identified computer system and implement solutionsComplex faults
M3: Measure the effectiveness of technical support provisionD1: Test computer system post fault resolution and interpret resultsD2: Analyse trends from troubleshooting technical issues and make recommendations to reduce repeat occurrences

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