Year

2006

Degree Name

Master of Information Systems

Department

School of Economics and Information Systems - Faculty of Commerce

Abstract

Information technology has changed the way organizations function. This has resulted in reliance of help desks to support users to deal with a wide range of information technology related problems such as hardware, software and telecommunication. The help desk generally has to cover a wide range of information technology products and services. However, due to resources problem, in particular the lack of help desk staff, users often have to wait for a considerably long time before their enquiries and problems are answered and solved. Literature has shown that the majority of incoming enquiries are considered to be simple and routine which do not require specialized knowledge. This research investigates the feasibility of developing a web-based user self-help knowledge management system by applying techniques in knowledge management and software agent technology to improve the support process of routine and simple technical enquires in the help desk. In this research, simple and routine technical enquiries are classified as problems that can be solved by users if sufficient information is provided. A survey is conducted to identify queries and problems that are considered to be simple and routine. The results also show that a decrease of incoming enquiries can be expected if sufficient online information, trainings, guidelines and technical documentations are provided to the users. A conceptual knowledge management framework has been developed to create, store, make available, use and evaluate knowledge. A prototype has been developed to demonstrate the capability of providing solutions to simple and routine enquiries. Software agent technology and ontology are applied in the proposed system. Software agent provides autonomous handling of queries and ontology formalises vocabulary in the system.

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