Preparing Your Staff for IT Process Automation in 4 Easy Steps

Preparing Your Staff for IT Process Automation in 4 Easy StepsWhen it comes to successfully implementing IT process automation, the first (and perhaps the most critical) step is preparing your staff for what’s to come. Setting expectations, initiating proper training and getting your team excited and on-board can make the transition that much easier. If you’re in the planning process, here are 4 key steps for getting your staff ready for launch.

Take Baby Steps

While the thought of automating manual tasks and streamlining operations may make perfect sense to you, your team members may be harboring fear about their job security. The key to preparing your staff for IT process automation adoption is to take it one step at a time. Keep communications open, encourage questions and answer them honestly. Demonstrate to your employees that automation is meant to make their lives easier, not replace them. Then, start slow by automating one or two tasks at a time so they can experience it firsthand.

Include Them

Obviously not everyone in IT will be a part of overarching business decisions, but in areas where IT process automation will directly impact a team member’s day to day work, include them in the process whenever possible. For instance, the planning stage, when you’re identifying and prioritizing tasks that can and should be automated, ask for input from those who are responsible for completing these manual activities. This early buy-in will make the experience a more positive one. Whenever possible, you should also include team members in the implementation process as well.

Be Transparent

Adopting a new policy, regardless of whether it happens to be IT process automation or something else, can be a challenging and overwhelming experience – especially for those on the front line. The more these employees feel like they’re “in the know,” the better their overall opinion of the process will be. IT leaders should be open and honest, presenting information in a centralized and transparent way. If a certain part of someone’s job is going to be replaced by automation, be upfront about it. This eliminates the risk of misunderstanding and subsequent morale issues. Then, communicate how the change will create more opportunity in other areas.

Identify Obstacles Early

Another important step in preparing your staff for a smooth transition to IT process automation is effectively identifying obstacles in advance that may hinder progress. This is where including employees in the process and being upfront with what to expect are so important. Encourage team members to assist in determining potential problems that may arise during implementation, such as certain existing monitoring or control functions which could result in unwarranted alerts and cause confusion and delay. Identifying and addressing potential issues early can help avoid them altogether.
As with any type of tech advancement, the more you plan ahead, the more likely your IT process automation deployment will go off without a hitch. By gaining buy-in from your employees and helping them to understand what to expect from the process and, most importantly, what their new roles will become, you’ll end up even more ahead of the game.

Learn more about IT process automation and its many practical applications by downloading one of our free eBooks. Better yet, try it free for 30 days!

eBook: 10 time consuming tasks you should automate




How Robotic Process Automation is Innovating the Insurance Industry

How Robotic Process Automation is Innovating the Insurance IndustryThe insurance industry has always been one in which growth, profitability and competitive advantage have been significant challenges. This is becoming increasingly true as we steamroll full speed into the digital age. Today’s tech savvy consumers are changing the way they interact with insurance companies, trading traditional agent-based service for a more modern, real-time, virtual experience. Robotic process automation provides the ideal solution for this need.

To demonstrate this, let’s consider the following real-world scenario. A consumer in need of auto coverage goes on his or her mobile device and does some comparison shopping of various insurance companies and plans. Once the choices have been narrowed down, this consumer will then request a quote from each company. From there he or she will accept the most favorable quote/policy and complete the transaction with a purchase.

This may seem simple and straightforward to the consumer, but in reality it requires a complex workflow which involves generating a quote and then underwriting and issuing the policy. That workflow must execute seamlessly in order for the customer to be satisfied. What’s more, all of this must be handled instantly, electronically and without human intervention. Furthermore, if the customer isn’t brand new, there may also be the issue of bridging legacy systems.

In the past, such a scenario would be quite challenging for even a well-known, established insurance company.

Enter RPA. Robotic process automation can effectively link systems and relevant data, solving the issue of integrating existing legacy platforms. This greatly improves efficiency while also addressing the need to manage costs. Companies don’t have to worry about implementing an entirely new system in order to remain competitive. From the consumer’s perspective, the entire process of purchasing an underwritten policy is quick and seamless, thanks to behind-the-scenes automation. Even the billing set up can be handled by the RPA tool.

For the insurance industry as a whole, robotic process automation can provide more overarching and widespread benefits. Greater innovation will lead to better service, which creates a healthier, more competitive environment for all the players in the market today. With RPA, time-to-market will also be decreased, which will ultimately result in lower expenses overall.

The insurance industry has always been one wrought with a number of intrinsic challenges. Those challenges have only increased in the digital age. Robotic process automation can offer all the answers to these issues and will continue to revolutionize the field as new situations and needs arise down the road.

Could your insurance agency benefit from robotic process automation? Download your free 30 day trial to find out today!


eBook: 10 time consuming tasks you should automate


*This post inspired by UiPath.

How to Be More Proactive with Your Cyber Security Incident Response

How to Be More Proactive with Your Cyber Security Incident ResponseIt’s been proven time and time again that taking a reactive approach to cyber security incident response is an exercise in futility. Just ask Target or any number of other big-name brands that have suffered monetary and reputational damage at the hands of a security breach. With criminals becoming savvier by the day, organizations simply must take a more proactive approach to not just dealing with incoming threats as they occur, but actually thwarting them ahead of time.

The first step involves creating a more closed-loop system. That is, having a plan in place that not only identifies potential incidents, but carries through with the appropriate action accordingly. One of the biggest reasons cyber-attacks are successful is because the victim didn’t have such a strategy in place at the time of the incident. Even in cases where a threat is actually detected, it is often allowed to slip by due to the sheer volume of incoming alerts and the limitations of traditional IT departments.

To be truly effective, a cyber security incident response plan must cover every angle of the alert process. A quality monitoring system is great, but what if that system fails to adequately identify and prioritize a serious threat? To make this type of set up more proactive, automation can be integrated so that any and all incidents that occur and are picked up by the monitoring system can then be properly addressed, either automatically or via human intervention following the escalation and notification process.

In a recent survey conducted by the SANS Institute, all trends indicate widespread improvements are being made in cyber security incident response strategies across the board. Most survey respondents credited automation for these incremental improvements, but also admit that they still have quite a ways to go to reach full maturity. Advancements in skills as well as tools and technologies being leveraged and a more integrated approach are all needed in order to achieve optimum security levels.

The survey also revealed that four of the top issues relating to incident response include: lack of adequate system visibility (45%), inability to properly distinguish incidents (37%), too much time for remediation (29%) and lack of integrated, automated tools (28%). Further complicating matters is the increase in personal mobile device usage in the workplace. As more organizations adopt and roll out BYOD policies, the risk of security breaches multiplies exponentially.

Automation can provide the solution needed by offering enhanced visibility and faster, more accurate and effective response and remediation to cyber-attacks.

In conclusion, it is becoming more evident by the day that cyber-attacks are increasing, both in number and complexity. Traditional reactive cyber security incident response plans are no longer a match for these evolving risks. Only those organizations that adapt accordingly and take on a proactive approach to handing incidents will remain secure against such attacks.

Is your business ready for automated cyber security incident response?

Could automation provide your company with the added level of protection needed over the coming months and years?

Request a live demo today to get started!





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




3 Key Business Processes that Can Benefit from Workload Automation

3 Key Business Processes that Can Benefit from Workload AutomationJust a few decades ago, manual scripting and old-school batch processing were sufficient for most businesses. Given the always-on, 24/7 digital nature of business today, however, this is no longer enough to keep organizations secure, efficient and competitive. Workload automation is the ideal solution for helping companies run at maximum productivity while also saving time and money. If you’re considering adopting this tool for your business, here are 3 processes that might be a good place to start.

FTPs and Batch Processes

The exchange of information via electronic file transfer is commonplace in almost all businesses today, as is batch data processing. Managing each of these key areas individually is expensive and time-consuming. It also leaves the business vulnerable to risks associated with delays in file transfers or batch process failures.

Yet, many businesses that have adopted automation are still struggling, because they’re attempting to automate each piece separately. That’s because this creates silos and makes it incredibly difficult to manage complex workflows that span multiple applications, databases and FTP operations. The result is a fragmented approach that is both a waste of time and prone to error.

The solution is adopting workload automation that is comprehensive enough to incorporate FTP operation management within the job scheduling function. This provides enhanced visibility and greater control over both FTP and batch processes. With this more architectural approach, if and when a problem occurs, the job scheduler can securely send FTPs and restart automatically from the precise point of failure while also notifying IT operations of the issue.

Data Warehousing & Business Intelligence

These days, real-time data, business intelligence and reporting are essential to an organization’s ongoing success. Furthermore, how this information is gathered, organized and delivered is absolutely critical. Automating the data warehousing process is becoming not just an added benefit, but a necessity.

While there are many different tools that currently exist for this purpose, most have limitations. For instance, many of the popular data warehousing and BI solutions on the market today are platform-specific and are limited in terms of functionality. As a result, in order to effectively pass data across the various systems, IT operations must rely on time-consuming and error-prone scripting.

As a resolution to these serious issues, workload automation can provide the ability to integrate and manage complex workflows that span multiple data warehousing environments. The result is a much greater quality of data and enhanced reporting capability. Scripts and scheduling tools that are platform-specific can then be unified into a single workload automation framework which offers a higher degree of control and allows businesses to meet the increasing demands being placed on them.

Managing Dependencies & Data Sharing

There are a wide variety of applications and platforms that make up a core business infrastructure. This may include anything from CRM and project management systems to ERP, work order management software and supply chain management. Furthermore, the multitude of systems, software and applications are often made up of a mish-mash of well-known suppliers, such as Microsoft, SAP and Oracle.

In order to operate successfully and at maximum efficiency and output, organizations must find a way to seamlessly integrate all of these systems to effectively schedule and manage batch processing. Adopting an architectural approach through workload automation can help achieve this objective, ensuring that business applications are updated in a timely manner and speeding time to resolution in the event of a problem.

Of course, these are just three of the many areas a business can benefit from the adoption and implementation of workload automation.

Are you leveraging this powerful workload automation tool for your own IT operations? Don’t wait! Start automating today. Download your free 30 day trial to get started.





eBook: 10 time consuming tasks you should automate




Ayehu Security Incident Response Automation Software Mentioned in Latest Gartner Research Report

Ayehu Security Incident Response Automation Software Mentioned in Latest Gartner Research Report

Ayehu Software Technologies Ltd., industry leader in developing and marketing enterprise-grade IT process automation software is pleased to announce its inclusion in another Gartner research report.

In this most recent publication, Ayehu was mentioned as a trusted provider of security incident response automation solutions.

The report, entitled The Five Characteristics of an Intelligence-Driven Security Operations Center, addresses security leaders and provides a comprehensive overview of how intelligence-driven security operation centers (SOCs) will need to use tools, processes and strategies to protect their organizations against modern threats. Among the topics covered, the report delves into key challenges SOCs face today and provides expert recommendations for successful evolution from traditional to intelligence-driven SOC (ISOC).

Throughout the report, a common theme emerges which demonstrates the need for security leaders to go beyond traditional threat-detection methodology and preventative technologies and adopt more advanced and sophisticated policies. The main component of these newer, intelligence-driven SOCs is automation. To that end, Security Incident Response Platforms (SIRPs) and Security Operations Automation Platforms (SOAPs) are mentioned, the latter of which includes Ayehu as an example.

“The driving force behind all the work we do at Ayehu is the desire to help businesses of every size and industry better protect themselves against the ever-increasing threat of cyber-attacks,” comments Co-Founder and CEO of Ayehu, Gabby Nizri. “Our passion, hard work and tireless determination to develop a superior IT Process Automation solution are beginning to pay off. We couldn’t be more pleased to be recognized by Gartner, such a respected authority in the IT realm.”

To learn more about how automation can fortify your cyber security incident response policy and help your SOC develop into a more intelligence-driven model, check out Ayehu’s extensive library of eBooks or download and try the eyeShare product free for 30 days.

About Gartner

Gartner, Inc. is the world’s leading information technology research and advisory company. They specialize in conducting, compiling and delivering technology-related insight to help IT professionals and business leaders make sound decisions. Gartner is headquartered in Stamford, CT and currently employs 6,600 associates, including more than 1,500 consultants, research analysts and clients in 85 countries. For more information, please visit www.gartner.com.

About Ayehu

Ayehu provides Security Incident Response Automation solutions for IT & Security professionals to identify and resolve critical incidents, simplify complex workflows, and maintain greater control over IT infrastructure through automation. Ayehu solutions have been deployed by major enterprises worldwide, and currently support thousands of IT processes across the globe. The company has offices in New York and Tel Aviv, Israel. For more information please visit www.ayehu.com.

eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response


5 More Habits of Highly Effective IT Departments & How IT Process Automation Plays a Role

5 More Habits of Highly Effective IT Departments & How IT Process Automation Plays a Role

Recently we shared 5 common characteristics of highly effective IT departments and the role that IT process automation plays in their success. In that vein, we thought we’d delve into a few more noteworthy habits that those who are mastering the IT realm exhibit. So, without further ado, here are 5 more things to model your IT department after.

Breaking down silos.

One of the biggest reasons IT professionals have struggled to maintain optimum service levels is the fact that so many organizational infrastructures remain fragmented. When each individual silo is operating on its own, cohesiveness within the systems is a near impossibility. Successful IT departments have found a way to break down these barriers and create a more streamlined, multi-channel and connected platform. IT process automation can be the bridge to effectively achieving this.

Taking a proactive approach.

It used to be sufficient to handle incoming threats and other IT issues as they arose. In today’s digital age, however, this is no longer effective enough to maintain security and remain competitive. Instead, IT personnel must take a more proactive approach to identifying potential problems before they occur and addressing them accordingly. Thanks to automation technology, this is completely possible.

Reducing interruption and downtime.

System down time of any length can be detrimental to an organization. Likewise, when end-users have to be interrupted in order for maintenance and other routine tasks to be performed, the drop in productivity and efficiency can affect the bottom line. IT departments who have adopted IT process automation, on the other hand, can ensure that these events are minimized and/or eliminated altogether.

More effective security strategies.

These days, data security is a concern that every business in the world must consider. Cyber-attacks are on the rise and becoming more sophisticated by the day, exposing the weaknesses of traditional security plans and policies and leaving organizations vulnerable to costly threats. Integrating IT process automation with existing incident response strategies can create a more fortified layer of data protection and help avoid these ever-increasing risks.

Ability to demonstrate real value.

While IT professionals understand how critical their services and the tools they use are to an organization, getting key decision makers on-board can be a challenge. In order to justify an adequate budgetary allocation, IT leaders must find a way to communicate their worth. IT process automation provides the ability to quantify results and prove ROI, demonstrating to “the powers that be” how invaluable investment in this area of the business truly can be.

In an industry for which the demand to do more with less continues to rise, adopting the right habits can truly mean the difference between an IT department that simply exists and one that thrives through ongoing success. These five additional characteristics can help transform your IT group into a highly effective, agile team that continues to realize positive results.

Could IT process automation be the missing link for your IT department? Download your free trial today and see what you’re missing!

IT Process Automation Survival Guide



Five IT Service Management Operations you Should Automate Today

Five IT Service Management Operations you Should Automate TodayWhen it comes to IT service management automation, there are some things that are a must, particularly in terms of implementation. In order for your organization to realize the maximum benefits, the following 5 components should be present and accounted for.

Configuration Management & Service Asset

For IT service management automation to run most effectively, integration with the AMDB and CMDB are among the most critical. Automation can take care of keeping CMDB current and consistently up to date. Successful automation can also lead to a greater level of accuracy.

Actionable Service Catalog

An organization’s service catalog contains an organized list of any and all information and business technology-related services performed by said enterprise. Furthermore, an actionable service catalog provides the ability for end-users to request services on-demand as well as perform self-service tasks. ITSM automation can help enhance this feature, benefiting both the user as well as the IT department.

Change Management

ITIL should be closely aligned with a company’s change management strategy. Given the importance of a solid policy for managing change, IT service management automation should support any and all change initiatives, not hinder them. Change tickets can and should be opened via automation and should also accompany the approval process to ensure proper compliance.

IT Financial Management

Establishing a cohesive integration between IT service management automation and IT financial management is no longer just an option. It’s a necessity. Successfully achieving this will enable portfolio owners or service providers to maximize output and match growing demand. It also provides a number of practical benefits from a logistics standpoint, such as simpler reporting.

CSI & Service Reporting

Perhaps the most important factor to keep in mind is that automation is not something that you simply roll-out once and forget about. To the contrary, it is most effective and successful when it is implemented in different phases and executed on an incremental basis. IT service management automation tools must be adequately integrated in order to enable service managers to track and govern the automation process.

Other necessities for the IT service management automation process include automated service reporting, accurate fulfillment of automation requests, speed, agility, scalability and sustainability.

Are you accounting for all of these critical components in your IT service management automation strategy?

Could you use some expert guidance or a more sophisticated tool to maximize your ROI? Give us a call at 1-800-652-5601 or better yet, download your free product trial today.

5 Ways to level up your service desk using it process automation


Live Webinar: How To Automate Password Resets (& Eliminate Up To 40% Of Your Help Desk Calls!)

Does your help desk spend far too much time fielding calls from users asking to reset their passwords or unlock their accounts?

START letting users reset their own passwords, using IT Process Automation.

Please join our webinar on Monday, November 23, 2015. 12:00 am EST / 9:00 am PST to learn why you should let IT Process Automation handle your Password Resets (and Account Unlocks).
How to Automate Password Resets (& Eliminate up to 40% of your Help Desk Calls!)We’ll demonstrate a self service password reset & account unlock solution that requires no human intervention, freeing up your help desk staff for more important tasks.

We will answer these questions and more:

  • Why do I need this solution?
  • How does it work?
  • How simple is it to implement and use?
  • Does it support multiple active directory domains?

Speakers:

GuyYaron

Yaron Levy                            Guy Nadivi 

VP Professional Services       Director, Business Development – North America

5 Habits of Highly Effective IT Departments & How IT Process Automation Plays a Role

5 Habits of Highly Effective IT Departments & How IT Process Automation Plays a RoleWe frequently talk about how IT process automation can dramatically improve IT operations, but this is really only one piece of the puzzle. It’s not enough to simply adopt ITPA. To truly achieve optimum efficiency, productivity and performance, it’s equally important that the staff at the helm exhibits certain characteristics. In part one of a two-part blog series we’ve identified 5 common habits of highly effective IT departments that other organizations can model their operations after.

Identifying and leveraging emerging technology trends.

Perhaps there is no field in which this skill is more valuable than in the IT industry, where technology evolves and improves at a lightning rate. The ability to keep a finger on the pulse of what’s new and then converting that knowledge into action for the benefit of the business is key. This is particularly the case in terms of IT process automation, which is improving and becoming more sophisticated by the day and can be invaluable to the business if used properly.

A solid understanding of big-picture business objectives.

One of the most frustrating obstacles IT personnel face is that of convincing the powers-that-be of the importance and benefits surrounding various technologies, including IT process automation. Because decision makers often don’t have any direct interaction with these types of tools or services, the best way to sell them is to demonstrate how they tie in with the organization’s big-picture goals. Therefore, having IT professionals who understand these objectives is essential.

Embracing change.

Rather than worrying that cloud and IT process automation technologies will make IT jobs obsolete, highly effective IT professionals have the ability to take a more comprehensive outlook. Instead of resisting the changes that are inevitable, these highly effective individuals and departments recognize the benefits and learn to embrace them, putting them to work for their organizations.

Seeing the value in self-service options.

Insecure IT professionals might view the implementation of self-service options as a threat to their jobs. Highly successful individuals, however, will view this type of IT process automation as a way to eliminate their menial day to day tasks and free them up to focus on more important things. They also see user self-service as an opportunity to further their own professional skills, which makes these forward-thinking IT workers much more valuable to the company as a whole.

Focusing on projects which impact the company’s bottom line.

Another reason why the ability to see and understand the big-picture business goals is because this allows IT professionals to focus their efforts in a more strategic manner. Rather than just participating in the daily drudgery of work, highly effective IT personnel will target projects that are specifically designed to either increase revenue, reduce costs or both.

The bottom line is, not all IT departments are created equal. Incorporating professionals that have the above habits and characteristics can mean the difference between barely getting by and helping your organization thrive on continued success.

Stay tuned for the second part of this blog series in which we’ll be sharing five more such habits and how IT process automation plays a role. And, in the meantime, enjoy some of our free eBooks and other valuable resources.





eBook: 10 time consuming tasks you should automate




Leveraging Robotic Process Automation to Attract, Retain and Motivate Your Staff

Getting a Leg Up on the Competition with Robotic Process AutomationLike it or not, most jobs include a number of tasks that are repetitive, mundane and not very enjoyable. In years past, these tasks were a necessary evil, but today – thanks to the more widespread adoption of robotic process automation technology – these menial day-to-day functions are being eliminated. As a result, companies that have embraced and implemented RPA are finding that it’s giving them a competitive advantage, particularly in terms of attracting and retaining top talent.

Firstly, by taking away the need for human workers to conduct mundane tasks, you free them up to focus on things that they find interesting and engaging. For instance, some of your employees might prefer interacting with customers or applying their problem solving skills to resolve important business issues. With robotic process automation handling the busy work, those team members can focus on what they’re passionate about. This drives morale levels up and naturally improves productivity.

Another way RPA can bolster HR efforts is a reduction in sick time. While it’s normal to expect employees to take time off when they’re not feeling well, in some organizations, these numbers are higher due in large part to the nature of the work being performed. Being on duty for longer hours and/or having to meet increasing demands to produce a greater output can easily lead to a rise in employee illness and burnout. Robotic process automation removes this barrier.

There is also a significant cost savings to the business itself when the need for overtime and hiring temporary employees is eliminated. As a result, the monies that would have been earmarked for these expenses can then be put toward hiring and engaging highly skilled personnel. Being able to pay competitive rates can further help a business attract the type of employees that will further improve performance and growth.

The technology behind robotic process automation can often be enough of a selling point for a potential candidate for employment. With the Millennial generation poised to take over the workforce over the next several years, tech-savvy applicants will be looking for prospective employers that can offer them the best working environment. RPA can be the differentiator that makes one organization stand out amongst the rest.

Finally, as a result of all of these benefits, employees that are more satisfied and engaged thanks to robotic process automation will tend to be happier and perform better overall. This can naturally lead to improved service levels, both internally as well as externally with customers.

Are you doing enough to attract, retain and engage highly talented individuals to your company?

Could robotic process automation give you better results?

Check out these ten tasks you can start automating today and then download your free 30 day trial to get started.





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response