At the end of May, the Help Desk returned to Fondren Library. Our new expanded space is in the west lobby adjacent to the Collaborative Commons and Starbucks Café. If you haven’t yet seen the new renovations in Fondren Library, take a few minutes to come see the improvements. And, when you do, come check out the new help desk area. We’re excited to continue to providing our service back in Fondren Library. Continue reading The IT Help Desk Returns to Fondren Library!
New antivirus protection, a new video conferencing solution, and a 100% Canvas campus are just a few of the items highlighted in this month’s newsletter.
On May 23, the Help Desk will be relocating from the Hughes-Trigg Student Center back to Fondren Library West. We are looking forward to providing top-notch support in a beautifully renovated space, and in a convenient, central location on campus.
Summer Hours beginning June 1st:
|Monday through Thursday||8AM – 9PM|
|Friday||8AM – 6PM|
|Saturday and Sunday||12PM – 6PM|
|Submit a Ticket Online:||help.smu.edu|
Classroom Emergency Support
Please phone 214-768-8888 to request assistance.
Page updated 05/16/2016 to fixed summer hours.
Page updated 05/17/2016 to add exact move date.
The OIT Help Desk will operate under reduced hours for Spring Break as the Hughes-Trigg Student Center will be closed.
Spring Break Help Desk Hours
|March 7–11||8:00 am – 6:00 pm|
The emergency after-hours option will, of course, be available when the help desk is closed.
During the winter break, our Classroom Support team was hard at work to make sure classrooms in need of technology upgrades were ready for the new semester. As semesters go by, heavily used equipment becomes less reliable and older technology requires replacement to keep classrooms functional.
Almost forty classrooms received upgrades over the break with improvements including new projectors, enhanced functionality, revamped control systems and more. Here are a few examples of the work that’s been completed across campus:
- Annette Simmons: New projectors in 138, 144 and 218. New lamps in 221 and 213.
- Dedman Life Science: New projectors in 110, 127, 128, 129, 130 and 131.
- Clements Hall: New projectors and control systems in G16, G18, 120, 126, 225, 324, 325, 326 and 334. New computers installed in 225, G18, 326 and 334.
- Dallas Hall: New control systems in 120, 137 and 138.
- Umphrey Lee: New power control in 233.
- Owens Arts Center: New power control in B150 and 2020.
- Hyer Hall: TV/wall monitor installed in G21.
These repairs and improvements are just a small portion of the larger mission to update all classrooms on campus for a more consistent experience for faculty and students. As always, if you have any questions regarding the operation of classroom equipment, feel free to contact the IT Help Desk at 214-768-4357. If there is an immediate technical problem with the classroom, a support representative will be dispatched to your location and should arrive within five minutes.
Over the past 6 months, there have been a large number of changes as we transitioned to Shared Services. Although we are still modifying and improving processes, the main contact channels will remain intact. This ensures you always know how to get help when you need it.
Classroom Emergency Support
- Please dial 214-768-8888 to access the classroom support line.
- Faculty in Cox can continue to use the help button on the podiums in the classrooms.
Classrooms in Lyle:
- For Computer or Network issues in the classroom, contact 214-768-8888.
- For assistance with AV and recording equipment, please contact the Lyle Distance Education Help Desk at 214-768-1260 or email email@example.com.
Lyle Help Desk Hours: Monday – Friday 8:30AM-5:00PM
Control Rooms: Monday – Thursday 11:00AM-9:45PM and Saturday 8:00AM-12:30PM
Reporting issues or requests for assistance
The IT Help Desk is now fully staffed (see We are excited to announce the new Help Desk team!) and last month, we began offering full-time Help Desk support coverage 7 days a week. To ensure that all reported issues are being addressed quickly, support requests will be first handled/reviewed by the IT Help Desk rather than being distributed immediately to the local IT Resources.
All requests for assistance (outside of the classroom emergencies) should be made through one of our contact channels listed below. The Help Desk will either respond to the issue directly or route the issue to the appropriate personnel for resolution. Since many of the responsibilities of our IT personnel changed with the move to Shared Services, this process will ensure an efficient and timely response to your request by the appropriate personnel.
|Monday through Friday:||8:00AM-8:00 PM
(classroom support line opens at 7:45am)
|In Person:||Hughes Trigg Student Center|
After hours emergency
Call the help desk number at 214-768-4357 and activate the emergency pager line. This notifies the help desk consultant on call as well as the Director of Customer Service.
Printing issues/requests: email firstname.lastname@example.org
IT Purchases (Hardware and Software only): email@example.com
The Cox IT Desk: The Cox IT Desk will continue to serve the Cox community for checking out equipment and general assistance. They are open Monday- Thursday from 7:30am- 9:30pm, Friday 7:30am-5:00pm, and Saturday from 7:30am-3:30pm.
As with any transition, some modifications may be needed. We promise to address issues as quickly as possible. Your feedback on requests for assistance is greatly appreciated can easily be done by replying to the ticket survey. You are also welcome to contact Help Desk Manger Lauren Nelson or the Director of Customer Service, Rachel Mulry, with any feedback.
Since a majority of the help requests are captured within our help desk ticketing system, we have access to a large amount of data regarding the types of issues or requests being made on a regular basis. Although the ticket metrics do not provide a comprehensive picture of the work being done by IT, it does provide some valuable information about trends, typical response times and areas for improvement.
A few weeks ago, a report was sent to each of the schools capturing some general information and metrics gleaned from the ticket system as well as key highlights from the shared services transition. The metrics presented can serve simply as a baseline for understanding service levels. After producing the initial report, we’ve identified several processes where we need to report in much more detail to capture the actual service level. So adjustments are being made so the data will be more meaningful to the campus community.
For example, a single account request may involve up to 14 different sub-tickets before it is complete. The response time in the reports capture the average time to resolve an account issue but does not take into account how many subtickets are involved! So in future reports, I hope to illustrate how long it takes for each subgroup to process their portion or how long it takes for access to each system.
The first reports are now available for the SMU Community. It is our goal to share our progress as we implement and improve this shared services model. This report will be published on a quarterly basis. To access the report, visit www.smu.edu/OIT/AboutUs/SharedServices.
In conjunction with the transitions to Shared Services, several positions were allocated to the Help Desk team in order to provide full time staff on site seven days a week. We are pleased to announce that all positions are now filled! We’d like to introduce you to our entire help desk team ready to serve your technical support needs.
Lauren Nelson has been with SMU for several years, and has transitioned into the role of Help Desk Manager. In her different roles on campus over the past few years, her focus has been on providing excellent service, and she looks forward to continuing to support the SMU community and the Help Desk team in her new role.
Shanta Ball previously worked with Apple for several years, and after a short time there, she was promoted to Trainer for her store and market. Thankfully, Shanta has decided to join our team to help us support the SMU community. During her spare time, Shanta volunteers at Children’s hospital twice a week, and loves music. She enjoys finding new artists, and her “unashamed addictions right now include Adele and Justin Bieber.” She can also play five different instruments (flute, piccolo, oboe, saxophone, and piano).
Byron Craig also worked previously with Apple, and is “passionate about technology.” He loves photography, and has previously shot with the NBA, NFL and MMA athletes. In addition, Byron believes that “growth and knowledge are important,” and plans on taking classes here at SMU. He has two daughters, Paiten and Arianna, and recently transitioned back to Texas. We are thrilled to have him on the team, and know that he will provide amazing support to SMU.
Margaret Dew recently joined us from Cox, and has been an SMU staff member for almost 25 years! She has an MA in Anthropology from SMU, and a BA in Anthropology from UIUC, and grew up in Nebraska and Northwest Illinois. She is involved in rescue and rehoming of dogs and cats in Oak Cliff, and has a dog named Gus. She also admits that she likes to talk about politics and religion at the dinner table.
Jonathan Bull joined the Help Desk team full time in August, after working as part of the student worker team for several years. Jonathan completed a Religious Studies degree, here at SMU last May, and continues to be invaluable to the Help Desk team.
The names Janet Asberry and Gina Benavides may also sound familiar. They have each been providing amazing service to the SMU community for years! We are fortunate, that in addition to all that they do on the team currently, their expert knowledge will allow the helpdesk to continue improving upon the amazing service that has come to be expected.
With a new team solidified, we look forward to continually improving the service and support that the Help Desk provides to the SMU community!
As the winter holidays approach, everyone is gearing up to take well-deserved rest and time with their friends and family. During the winter break OIT will be closed; therefore tickets and e-mails will not be processed as they normally are during regular business. If you need any emergency assistance during the break, call the Help Desk line at 214-768-4357 to be directed to our emergency line which will page the OIT employee that is on-call.
When you get ready to leave campus for the break, consider saving energy by shutting down your computer completely before you leave. Keep in mind that you will not be able to remote into your machine when it’s turned off. So keep it on if you expect to access your computer while away.