Is the trend now that companies out source their Help Desk?

aeroguyaeroguy Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
Been looking at various job postings in my area (Toronto, Canada) and most of the jobs posted on craigslist are from independent IT managed service providers. From what i have seen most of these jobs pay you the minimum, expect you have a ton of experience in various platforms and also own a car (dont have one...too expensive). What do you guys think about these companies, can you move up from within them...my short term goals is to get a stable help desk job ($40,000 - $45,000) and my long term goals are to become a DBA (MS SQL) then an IT department manager.

Comments

  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    In my area (Midwest US, Wisconsin specifically) there was a good number of jobs available for helpdesk level positions as an internal employee up until the economy really tanked. Since then the trend around here has grown to be I would say at least 80% of the jobs on all of the various job sites I check from time to time are typically through IT oriented staffing agencies and/or contract to hire jobs. Prior I would estimate these sorts of jobs at maybe 40-50% of the listings for my area, so it seems that a lot of employers around here do not want to bring on a full time permanent employee currently.
  • GundamtdkGundamtdk Posts: 210Member
    The answer is yes, most companies out-source their Help Desk.

    Companies do that because the costs are cheaper.
  • blargoeblargoe Posts: 4,165Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Depends. Once you start looking at companies beyond x number of employees, it is much more common to seem them use a third-party call center and/or onsite contractors as helpdesk. It isn't as much of a savings for smaller shops to hire it out, but these days companies no matter what the size will use contact or temp to perm through a staffing company for just about any IT position.
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  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    Even places which do have their own help desks will generally go through a temp agency to get candidates in, and then offer you a job after a certain amount of time.

    Help Desk is help desk, no one wants to make a career out of it. Personally speaking, I would never depend on a help desk job as a long term employment solution. Use it for it is - an opportunity to get some experience under your belt and on your resume. Always keep your eyes open for something better

    Then again, I've spent enough years on a help desk that no one is willing to pay the amount of money it'd take for me to agree to work one again. If I lost my job tomorrow, I'd be looking for a job with Wal-Mart before I'd go looking for a help desk job.
  • logisticalstyleslogisticalstyles Posts: 136Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    If I lost my job tomorrow, I'd be looking for a job with Wal-Mart before I'd go looking for a help desk job.

    Wow. :)
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    If I lost my job tomorrow, I'd be looking for a job with Wal-Mart before I'd go looking for a help desk job.

    What about a helpdesk job FOR Wal-Mart :D You'd get a little smiley yellow sticker for each ticket you close :D
  • d00dled00dle Posts: 46Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    to hell with help desk job. I would die before I go back to help desk. hehe
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  • JordusJordus Posts: 336Banned
    I must be special, I skipped help desk altogether. icon_cool.gif
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  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    There's a reason why people who have done help desk for more than a few years refer to it as the helldesk. There's a limit to how much stupidity from customers you can take at the low end of the payscale before you throw up your hands and say screw it, or you say the wrong thing to a customer and get fired. I spent too many years working the help desk for a prominent ISP. When we instructed to start lying to customers, or find any excuse to blame for the customers problems except for something on our end, that's when I'd had enough. It was bad enough having to deal with people who should never have had access to a computer in the first place, but when I'm instructed to tell them things that are just going to make them angry and yell at me when I *know* it's our fault.

    I worked for Wal-mart while I was in school. I made just about as much there as I did at the above mentioned help desk job, so it was not a big paycut. I took a help desk job for my last 3 months of school, but once I graduated, one of my teachers got me a job and I said good bye.

    Now, with all that being said, those years were valuable, especially when it came to honing my troubleshooting skills. When you have to deal with people who think they know what the problem is, and the symptoms don't add up, and of course you don't have physical access to the machine, and the people on the other end are perfectly willing to lie to you... you tend to develop a Jedi sense for what's really going down on their end. But I did my time, and it'd be a waste of my abilities both, for me, and for the employer for me to be relegated back to that role. I'll let someone else have the chance to hone their skills and find something else to do if worse came to worse.
  • Big JizayBig Jizay Posts: 269Member
    If you can avoid helpdesk, but all means do it!! From what I've noticed, helpdesk and desktop support are known as entry level work. IMO, helpdesk should not be considered on the same level as desktop support. If I could get a DS position and leave helpdesk, that would make my month, possibly my year. I was really thinking about getting out of I.T. all together because of helpdesk, but being a part of this website for awhile has changed my mind. It seems that I.T. life gets sweeter after helpdesk life.

    People at my job are concerned about our helpdesk getting outsourced as well. Our QA team was outsourced to India. They've done it before, and I'm concerned that they'll do it again. My boss was asked by upper management to list like close to 150-200 duties that we do in the helpdesk and describe what happens when we do them and how to accomplish them. Why does upper management have to know HOW we accomplish duties. I think upper management is having my manager do this project so they can lay us off and have this info for the new sourced helpdesk.
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  • AldurAldur Juniper Moderator Posts: 1,460Member
    I worked technical support for juniper for about 2 years and those were stressful times, my ulcer can attest to that :) But in all honesty I would have not missed it for the world. The troubleshooting skills as well as customer interaction was priceless.

    I do have to say since I left that helpdesk role that life has been much much sweeter. The job I have is much less stressful, pays a hell of a lot more, and has much better benefits.

    To me it seems like the helpdesk role is something all/most ppl must do before moving on to better things. It sucks but you learn so much in a short amount of time.
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  • whatthehellwhatthehell Posts: 920Member
    So this whole "IT life is sweeter after helpdesk" --- to those who posted this --- what are your positions now out of curiosity?

    I am currently in support, and can attest to what everyone has said --- I also feel an ulcer and carpal tunnel coming on, and would love to have some "light at the end of the tunnel" for better, achievable roles that "pay more with way less stress"

    Info por favor? :D
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  • jrs91jrs91 Posts: 64Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    So this whole "IT life is sweeter after helpdesk" --- to those who posted this --- what are your positions now out of curiosity?

    I am currently in support, and can attest to what everyone has said --- I also feel an ulcer and carpal tunnel coming on, and would love to have some "light at the end of the tunnel" for better, achievable roles that "pay more with way less stress"

    Info por favor? :D

    I don't think that higher positions come with less stress. If anything there is more, because the buck stops with you. If you consistently can't fix/solve problems, your ass is gone. When you're a L1 tech or helpdesk guy, you just escalate what you can't figure out. The stress and annoyance comes more from dealing with idiots all day long. Higher level work is of course much more enjoyable on the whole, even with the greater responsibility.
  • blargoeblargoe Posts: 4,165Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    jrs91 wrote: »
    I don't think that higher positions come with less stress. If anything there is more, because the buck stops with you. If you consistently can't fix/solve problems, your ass is gone. When you're a L1 tech or helpdesk guy, you just escalate what you can't figure out. The stress and annoyance comes more from dealing with idiots all day long. Higher level work is of course much more enjoyable on the whole, even with the greater responsibility.
    I agree with this. It's not less stress, just different stress.
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  • arwesarwes Posts: 633Member
    I really kind of wish we would outsource help desk here. Right now I do pretty much everything, and there's so much server work that needs to be done but I can't get to it for printer problems and every day help desk crap. We tried hiring someone awhile back but the idiot kept falling asleep, and most decent applicants turn us down because we don't pay well.
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  • whatthehellwhatthehell Posts: 920Member
    jrs91 wrote: »
    I don't think that higher positions come with less stress. If anything there is more, because the buck stops with you. If you consistently can't fix/solve problems, your ass is gone. When you're a L1 tech or helpdesk guy, you just escalate what you can't figure out. The stress and annoyance comes more from dealing with idiots all day long. Higher level work is of course much more enjoyable on the whole, even with the greater responsibility.

    Thanks for the reply. I actually have to agree with this, talking with some of the upper level support reps --- it seems that they have WAY less on their "to-do list", but the items are way more complicated and there is typically no one else above them to help them or escalated to --- so they are the end all save all.
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  • SepiraphSepiraph Posts: 180Member
    aeroguy wrote: »
    Been looking at various job postings in my area (Toronto, Canada) and most of the jobs posted on craigslist are from independent IT managed service providers. From what i have seen most of these jobs pay you the minimum, expect you have a ton of experience in various platforms and also own a car (dont have one...too expensive). What do you guys think about these companies, can you move up from within them...my short term goals is to get a stable help desk job ($40,000 - $45,000) and my long term goals are to become a DBA (MS SQL) then an IT department manager.

    Yea unfortunately the job market is not too hot right now (i'm also in Toronto), and a lot of companies are out-sourcing. Was taking to a friend working Helpdesk for IBM and I know they are still hiring though because he was training them.
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