Science and Technology News

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

New virtual comm help desk coming to a PC near you

5th Communication Squadron

12/2/2014 - MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D.  -- A new Air Force communications program called the Virtual Enterprise Service Desk is scheduled to be deployed to every Air Force Global Strike Command NIPRNet desktop on Dec. 8, 2014.

Although, no date has been established yet as to when vESD will become the primary conduit for incident reporting and resolution, the Air Force goal's is to transition from the ESD being manned 24 hours a day to the vESD system. The ESD will continue to take phone calls for incident actions until vESD is fully deployed and operational with a burn-in period.

Currently, when users have a problem, they call the enterprise service desk and open a ticket. A ticket provides a breakdown of what needs to be completed to the requestors computer and when they called the desk for this issue.  The ESD technician attempts to solve their problem during that phone call or they transfer the ticket to the appropriate agency if it's not a quick fix.

With vESD, the user simply clicks an icon on their desktop, answers some questions and the software attempts to repair the issue.  They effectively reach a "Cyber/Virtual" ESD technician who, similar to a human technician, immediately attempts to fix the computer. Additionally, it performs its own "health check" of the user's computer.

If it can't resolve the problem, vESD will automatically initiate a ticket and route it immediately to the appropriate office at the 561st Network Operations Squadron or the Minot Air Force Base Communications Focal Point, depending on the problem identified.  Users can also enter their ticket number into the vESD software to check on the status of tickets they have submitted.

The vESD should alleviate some of the bottleneck users currently experience when trying to access the ESD help desk via limited phone lines. It is the final phase of a three-phase plan to completely transform how the Air Force tackles cyber customer support and improve the customer's experience.

This new system will include customers in the resolution process and provide better communication on the issues they're facing. As the Air Force gets smaller, this type of automation and innovation will be key for the communication squadron to successfully provide cyber communications to Minot AFB's war fighters.

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