Learn how e-Core's solutions helped the university boost efficiency, delight customers and cut costs.
Seton Hall University is a prestigious Catholic institution in New Jersey with over 10,000 students, offering more than 90 majors across undergraduate and graduate programs. Its exceptional academic programs and the success of its men’s basketball team attract a growing number of prospective students each year.
After over a decade of relying on outdated processes and tools to manage IT and business services, the solution in place became inefficient and costly, frustrating both students and the IT team. Seton Hall chose e-Core to create an effective strategy to address these challenges and find a cost-effective solution within a tight deadline.
The partnership resulted in the successful implementation of a new ITSM suite two months ahead of the deadline. The new solution brought enhanced efficiency and productivity in service management while simultaneously reducing annual software licensing costs by 70%.
- Created a strategy for modern service management
- Implemented self-help tools
- Established a repository for knowledge-base articles
- Developed an asset management tracking system (for laptops, printers, AV equipment, etc.) to eliminate use of outdated spreadsheets
- Migrated the ticketing system to Jira Service Management (JSM)
- Cost savings of 70% in licensing fees
- Reduced ticket volume by 18% in the first three months, enhancing the customer service experience
- Reduced help desk phone service costs
- Increased team productivity, enabling the relocation of five IT personnel from the service desk to other critical functions
- Access to meaningful data and accurate reports on asset management and ticket creation for strategic decision-making
Technology is intended to simplify our lives. However, at Seton Hall, a complex and costly software suite for ITSM, PMO, and other IT services posed challenges for users and staff.
All full-time, undergraduate students enrolled at the university are issued a laptop and access to 24/7 IT support through the University’s innovative Mobile Computing Program. Yet, the manual and outdated processes to deliver ubiquitous computing to the Seton Hall community contrasted with the university’s technology-driven approach to education, leaving users with an inefficient experience and staff without the data needed for strategic decision-making.
There were 12,000 tickets created per year, most of which were for simple tasks such as password resetting. Users relied heavily on Seton Hall’s help desk for support because they found the self-service online portal too difficult to navigate. As a result, the university had to pay an external help desk service provider to handle incoming calls, leading to escalating costs per call. Additionally, it kept five in-house IT agents dedicated to supporting this service by inputting tickets into Seton Hall’s system.
That was the situation when Associate CIO Paul Fisher reached an inflection point. Faced with a tight deadline before his core ITSM tool license expired, he had to find a new solution, but his IT team was already stretched thin with day-to-day activities. Hiring e-Core gave Fisher the expertise needed to craft and implement a cost-efficient strategy to meet the needs of Seton Hall’s digital operations within the given timeframe.
“What we thought would be an impossible task became possible once e-Core got involved. Their communication, flexibility and knowledge made it all possible.”
Director, PC Support Services
e-Core started by evaluating the university’s internal processes and systems to identify areas for improvement. Despite the time constraints, a well-defined strategy was crucial for determining priorities and the most effective approach to transform Seton Hall’s service management.
From the beginning, it was clear the new service management solution had to integrate with Seton Hall’s project management tool. At the time, the Project Management Office was using a costly add-on module that introduced a lot of unnecessary complexity and failed to meet Seton Hall’s needs.
e-Core replaced the previous solution by implementing a streamlined integration of Jira Service Management and Jira Software. This integration improved issue visibility and made processes faster and more intuitive. Because Jira and JSM are built on a common platform, the two systems work seamlessly to speed up service requests and eliminate the need for expensive add-ons.
The integration also eliminated the use of spreadsheets for inventory tracking. Now, when students reach out to the support team, the assigned agent can access the asset management repository and retrieve key information about the user’s device from a centralized system. If too many tickets are created for a particular laptop model, for example, they can easily pinpoint the pattern and act to prevent similar issues with other users.
To boost team productivity and elevate customer service, e-Core designed an online self-help tool that integrates Confluence with JSM. This solution offers users recommended knowledge-base articles before they create tickets to assist with simpler queries. Additionally, the customer support interface was simplified to make the system more intuitive and accessible through Seton Hall’s online portal.
The implementation of a modern, streamlined online process for customer services powered by knowledge-base articles allowed users to independently resolve the most common issues without the need for additional IT support.
In the first three months of using the new system, the number of new tickets decreased by 18%. Five IT agents who monitored and responded to calls for the service desk were relocated to more critical functions. Seton Hall also hired a more cost-effective phone service desk company to answer calls and create tickets directly into JSM. “I used to have five agents answering phone calls (from the external help-desk service). Now I have zero,” says John Fernandes, Director, PC Support Services at Seton Hall. “Two of the agents were promoted to desktop engineers and are doing second and third-level work, which added value to the team.”
Improved customer service and access to reliable data
Professors, students, alumni, and vendors now have a much better experience when they need assistance from Seton Hall’s team. The streamlined and simplified system interface, powered by a self-help tool, empowers users to easily find solutions for common questions and open tickets with the click of a button when they require additional support from IT. They also receive automated emails to keep them informed about the status of their ticket, encouraging users to trust, use, and track their tickets in the portal.
According to Fisher, the mobile app experience of JSM was another added value. “If a technician is dispatched to a computer lab, they can just use their phone and navigate easily through the system, while in the past they had to carry a 2-pound laptop that made the whole process more complex.”
Additionally, the new system eliminated the use of spreadsheets and allowed the team to have access to valuable data to better serve the community. “Our dashboards and reports are much more effective and capture what is happening at the organization,” says Fisher.
Significant Cost Savings
Seton Hall has achieved cost savings of 70% in software licensing fees after switching its ITSM service provider to JSM. By improving processes, the university was able to increase team productivity and enhance savings. “We moved away from holding everyone’s hands and getting everything done for them to a more self-service environment, where everything is available for users to do by themselves,” says Fernandes.
With the savings, the IT team now has the budget to invest proactively in initiatives that drive value to the business. “I can provide a higher level of service to our community. We’re working on a whole new series of services to enhance the user experience and give more options for the rest of the institution,” says Fernandes.
Digital acceleration. Delivered.
Fernandes acknowledges the stress that comes with changing a service provider the institution had been with for 25 years. Migrating to another solution in less than a year seemed impossible, but by partnering with e-Core, Seton Hall found the expert help needed to accomplish the mission. “The day we switched to Jira and I heard the team say, ‘We’re live! Everything’s working!’ I went home and told my wife that tons of pressure on my shoulders was gone,” says Fernandes. “I attribute that to e-Core. They stuck with us, helped us, and got us moving to where we needed to be.”
“The day we switched to Jira and I heard the team say, ‘We’re live! Everything’s working!’ I went home and told my wife that tons of pressure on my shoulders was gone. I attribute that to e-Core. They stuck with us, helped us, and got us moving to where we needed to be.”
Director, PC Support Services
The natural progression for an organization adopting a modern service management approach for specific business processes is to extend this practice to other critical areas to leverage the tools and expertise gained.
The same holds true for Seton Hall. “We want to expand the system to employee onboarding, facilities management, and other applications,” says Fernandes. Once again, e-Core has been selected as a trusted partner to accomplish the mission. “It was an easy choice for us. When you find a vendor that really understands your business and helps you, they become more than vendors – they become real partners. This is how we see e-Core,” says Fernandes.
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