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Service Desk Manager (SDM)

Duration: 4 Days

A training programme leading to the Service Desk Manager qualification.

Being an effective service desk manager requires a broad range of talents, from people-oriented abilities and an awareness of marketing to financial acumen and presentation skills. This course provides a thorough understanding of, and a qualification in, the twelve core areas of service desk management.

This interactive four-day course, that from the beginning involves students via discussions, debates, exercises and presentations, leads to the Service Desk and Support Manager qualification. It reviews the student’s understanding of the service desk and support environment and its pivotal role within the organization, while promoting a greater understanding of the current market place and the responsibilities of a service desk manager.

The course reviews current working practices, identifies ways to assess and improve service offering in line with best practices, and the importance and benefits of having good processes and procedures in place. Additionally, students review the skills, attributes and knowledge their staff requires to meet the demands of today’s service desk environment.

Students examine ways to motivate staff, identify ways to actively build better relationships with their customers and peers; including methods to develop their team as well as individuals within the team; along with approaches for the recruitment and retention of staff. Student completes the course having developed plans to improve and enhance the service desk function, their own skills and those of their team.

Who is it for?

The SDM qualification course is for existing and aspiring service desk managers and supervisors who wish to develop their understanding of service desk management practices and build a set of management skills. Suitable for those with as least three years’ experience in a service desk environment. Examples of professional job titles include.

  • Team Leader
  • Supervisor
  • Service Desk Manager
  • Support Manager
  • Service Delivery Manager
  • Customer Service Manager

Individuals interested in achieving an SDI qualification will come from all industry sectors across a range of large, medium, and small sized service desks. They will have a desire to be recognized for demonstrating an understanding of the important topics listed in these standards in order to pursue employment and advancement opportunities in the support industry.

Course Objectives

This course is design to offer service desk managers a globally recognized qualification which adheres to international standards. It provides a greater understanding of the crucial role of the service  desk manager and how to run an effective support operation, ensuring that they work to consistent standards recognized by the industry. It also reviews the six key concepts covered in the standards; the strategic role of the service desk, management competencies, business integration, operational management, tools and technologies, human resource and team development, on which are based the skills, competencies and knowledge that a service desk manager requires in order to effectively deliver professional and effective support.

The objectives of the course are to provide service desk managers with:

  • A thorough grounding in the skills required to lead, motivate and manager a service desk team
  • A complete service desk management tool kit covering strategy, leadership, employee development, relationship building, service improvement, ITSM processes, performance measurement, finance and tools and technologies.
  • An internationally recognized SDM qualification

It is based upon the standards and objectives for SDI’s service desk manager qualification and ensures that students are provided with the knowledge, information and tools to take the SDM exam.

Steps to Achieving the SDM Qualification

Candidates should attend the four-day official SDM course and review the standards booklet provided.

Candidates can prepare for the exam by reviewing example questions with their trainer, undertaking a practice paper during the course and studying the SDM standards.

To achieve the SDM qualification the candidate must attain a pass mark of 75% or more in the official exam which can be taken at any proctored Pearson Vue testing centre globally or as a paper-based exam immediately after the course. A score of 87% or higher will achieve a higher mastery score.


Defining Strategic Requirements

  • Review the role and responsibilities of the service desk from a global perspective
  • Examine the requirements for creating a plan to develop the strategic role of your team that underpins the organisation’s business goals
  • Identify key sources of knowledge and best practice

Developing a strategic Role

  • Review the underlying service ethics that support the strategic goals of the organization
  • Examine how the service desk can actively demonstrate its commitment to the organisation’s social responsibility policy

Essential Management Skills

  • Review the skills and responsibilities of an effective service desk manager
  • Investigate integrating IT services with the objectives of the organization
  • Examine the activities for  developing strategies business success
  • Examine the basics of financial management and how to commercially manage a service desk
  • Discuss the purpose and benefits of effective organizational change
  • Examine the most effective way to manage projects
  • Investigate the importance of having good communication skills from a management perspective
  • Review the importance of having excellent listening, negotiating and questioning skills

Promoting the Service Desk

  • Discuss the objectives of promoting the service desk
  • Review the key activities of a successful promotion programme
  • Investigate some of the option and channels that can be used to promote the service desk
  • Examine how to manage stakeholder expectation

IT Service Management

  • Review the objectives of ITSM
  • Examine service desk responsibilities in key ITIL® processes, their activities and benefits
  • Incident management and request fulfillment
  • Problem management
  • IT change management
  • Release  and deployment management
  • Service asset and configuration management
  • Knowledge management
  • Information security and access management
  • IT service continuity management
  • Service catalogue management
  • Discover the service desk’s responsibilities in the service level management process
  • Identify the principal components and activities of the service level management process
  • Investigate the purpose and typical content of Service level agreement (SLAs), Operational level agreements (OLAs) and Underpinning contracts (UCs)

Integrating the Service Desk

  • Discuss the power and importance of effective work relationships
  • Investigate the importance of formal and informal networks
  • Analyse your responsibilities in contributing to IT and business objectives
  • Explore the value of conducting assessments to aid continual improvement
  • Learn about various sourcing options and how they can be used to meet business requirements

Quality Assurance

  • Learn about the purpose and objectives of quality assurance (QA) programmes
  • Identify some common QA practices
  • Examine the purpose of customer feedback and various methods for obtaining it
  • Discuss the importance of effective customer satisfaction surveys and survey types used
  • Review methods for monitoring performance

Effective Management of Tools and Technologies

  • Review the most commonly-used technologies
  • Investigate the benefits of ITSM tools
  • Discuss automated call distribution and computer telephony integration
  • Identify commonly-used support delivery tools
  • Examine the benefits of self-service and self-healing
  • Investigate the effective use of social media

Recruitment, Retention and Development

  • Examine requirements for effective recruitment and the key qualities and skills required for successful support staff
  • Review the benefits of a structured induction and on-going training and development programme
  • Examine the behaviors required to retain staff, maintain excellent working relationships and address individual performance issues

Leadership & Management

  • Review the characteristics and activities requires of an effective manager
  • Examine the elements of successful planning and the methods used
  • Discover how to organize resources and direct, control and co-ordinate activities
  • Review the characteristics of good leaders
  • Examine the characteristics and benefits of effective and motivated teams and how to achieve them

Professional Development

  • Review how to ensure on-going professional development for yourself
  • Discover the benefits of coaching and mentoring and the basics of the processes
  • Examine some causes of stress in the workplace and some examples of how to manage stress effectively
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