Nelson Higher Education

Higher Education

A Guide to Customer Service Skills for the Service Desk Professional, 4th Edition

  • Donna Knapp
  • ISBN-10: 1285063589
  • ISBN-13: 9781285063584
  • 544 Pages | Paperback
  • Previous Editions: 2011, 2005, 2000
  • COPYRIGHT: 2015 Published
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About the Product

A GUIDE TO CUSTOMER SERVICE SKILLS FOR THE SERVICE DESK PROFESSIONAL, the definitive service desk text now available in a fully revised fourth edition, teaches technical professionals the skills and work habits needed to successfully interact with customers and achieve job satisfaction. Each chapter describes a specific business skill, soft skill, or self-management skill required to deliver effective technical customer support while providing proven, how-to techniques for mastering that skill. Research and references have been updated in each chapter, and the latest ITIL® vocabulary and concepts are reflected throughout the text. The Fourth Edition of A GUIDE TO CUSTOMER SERVICE SKILLS FOR THE SERVICE DESK PROFESSIONAL thoroughly examines the changing role of the service desk professional. An experienced IT professional with a unique industry perspective, author Donna Knapp describes the business and technology trends that are shaping the direction of the service desk industry and the opportunities available to those pursuing a service desk career. New case studies and case projects provide on-the-job practice, while updated chapters highlight the key transition from reactive to a more strategic, proactive service desk. The text explores how technology trends like cloud computing, virtualization, mobile technology, and bring-your-own-device are impacting the service desk, and new material examines the use of social media and collaboration technologies in a service desk setting.


  • INTERVIEWS WITH SERVICE DESK PROFESSIONALS PROVIDE UNMATCHED INSIGHTS. Thought-provoking interviews with leading professionals working in various capacities in today’s service desk industry give readers a first-hand, behind-the-scenes look at the realities of technical computer support.

  • HELPFUL NOTES BUILD UPON KEY INFORMATION IN EACH CHAPTER. Notes within each chapter offer additional information on specific terms and topics, encouraging the reader to explore concepts of interest in more depth.

  • USEFUL FIGURES AND SCREEN SHOTS CLARIFY HOW CONCEPTS APPLY IN TODAY’S BUSINESS WORLD. Figures and screen captures throughout this edition illustrate key ideas with meaningful, real examples of service desk concepts in action.

  • REVIEW QUESTIONS AND PROJECTS REINFORCE UNDERSTANDING. Student-tested Review Questions ensure comprehension and reader retention, while Hands-On Projects and Case Projects reinforce what students have learned and offer opportunities to apply concepts to real support situations.

About the Author

Donna Knapp

An experienced IT professional with more than 30 years in the industry as a practitioner, consultant, and trainer, Donna Knapp currently works as Curriculum Development Manager for ITSM Academy, a full-service provider of IT Service Management education. Ms. Knapp is an ITIL Expert, a Certified Process Design Engineer, a Certified ISO/IEC 2000 Consultant/Manager, a Certified Scrum Master, and she is certified in Knowledge-Centered Support (KCS) Principles. The author of several books on the service desk industry, she has also developed several highly successful seminars, including “Achieving Customer Service Excellence for Service Desk Professionals” and “ITIL at the Service Desk.”

Table of Contents

1. Achieving High Customer Satisfaction.
2. Developing Strong Listening and Communication Skills.
3. Winning Telephone Skills.
4. Technical Writing Skills for Support Professionals.
5. Handling Difficult Customer Situations.
6. Solving and Preventing Incidents and Problems.
7. Business Skills for Technical Professionals.
8. Teams and Team Players in a Service Desk Setting.
9. Minimizing Stress and Avoiding Burnout.
Capstone Project: Service Desk Site Visit.
Appendix A: Service Desk Resources.

New to this edition

  • Updated to reflect the changing role of the service desk, including an examination of the Business Productivity Team concept and enterprise Genius Bars.
  • Now includes coverage of multigenerational and multichannel support, such as the growing use of chat, social media, and avatars; also includes discussion of such key trends as bring your own device (BYOD).
  • Features an introduction to DevOps, an emerging culture and professional movement that stresses communication, collaboration, and integration between software developers and IT operations professionals.


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the Main title.
Please see Main title page for new to this edition information.

Instructor Supplements

Online Instructor's Resource  (ISBN-10: 1285839129 | ISBN-13: 9781285839127)

Everything you need for your course in one place! This collection of book-specific lecture and class tools is available online via Access and download PowerPoint presentations, images, instructor’s manual, videos, and more.