Looking for a quick return on your IT automation investment? Here’s what you need to do.

How to earn quick return on your IT automation projectThe most important component of any business decision, particularly in terms of IT, is being able to measure the results as quickly as possible. Ongoing success depends heavily on whether or not the money you’re spending is truly getting you the type of return that warrants continued investment; otherwise you may end up wasting cash and resources. Obviously, the sooner you can identify what is and isn’t working, the better. If you’ve recently launched an IT automation project, or are about to do so soon, here are five simple ways you can quickly identify results.

Identify Quick Wins or pain points that can show quick value – What was it that ultimately drove you to make the decision to adopt IT automation for your organization? What pain points were you hoping to address with this technology? Perhaps you identified areas where your team was being bogged down by time-consuming manual tasks, which was killing their productivity. Or maybe you realized that writing scripts was becoming a huge waste of valuable time and resources. Whatever the reasons, when you clearly identify them, you can quickly match the appropriate solution with each one, making it much easier to see the results.

Clearly Define Your Outcomes – Know ahead of time what your desired outcomes are and how you can anticipate achieving them. Then, calculate the potential savings you will realize by automating these steps. This gives you a clear picture of future savings and ROI that you can use as a benchmark to measure against as you work further into the process of shifting to automation.

Choose the Right Tool – Understand that not all ITPA tools are created equal. Be careful and diligent when evaluating your available options and know ahead of time what to look for in a quality IT process automation tool. For instance, some of the criteria you should be using includes determining whether the product is easy to use, modular, offers any type of pre-designed templates, and if so, what kind of customization is available. You should also be particularly aware of the 80/20 rule – that is, avoid tools that require 80% of your time, but that you will only benefit from 20% of the time.

Get the Right Sponsorship and team engaged in the process– Make sure that you’ve got the right team in place to help see this process through to fruition. Not only do you need buy-in from the “decision makers” and those high level team members that will lead the project, but you’ll also need to ensure that everyone involved remains focused and motivated to achieve the end result. This will help you stick to your timeline for implementation, avoiding costly delays that can affect your overall ROI.

Measure Results and Identify Other Areas for Expansion – IT automation isn’t something that only presents solutions for the here and now – it’s a long term solution that can help streamline your operations, improving ongoing efficiency and productivity, and enhancing your bottom line over the long haul. Don’t just focus on the short term benefits. Measure results on a regular basis. This will help you determine your long term ROI as well as identify other areas for expansion that could further benefit your firm.

For more detailed information on calculating ROI for ITPA, check out this past article or download your copy of the free ROI eBook below.

EBOOK: HOW TO MEASURE IT PROCESS AUTOMATION RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)

eyeShare 4.8.3 is Here! With Improved Features & Integration with HyperV

We are excited to announce the rollout of an updated version of our flagship product, eyeShare. Along with the correction of several bugs, this latest version (eyeShare 4.8.3) also contains a number of valuable new features and integrations.

 So, What’s New?

Integrations:

  • ServiceNow integration now supports Security Protocol TLS 1.2 and duplicate labels in forms.
  • BMC Remedyforce integration now supports integrating with a Sandbox instance.
  • Salesforce integration also now supports integrating with a Sandbox instance.
  • New integration with HyperV, including 18 activities.

Activities now support:

  • Reading a specific Excel sheet
  • Single and multi SSH commands (setting a certificate within activity settings and selecting an authentication method)
  • Start SSH session
  • Using headers, certificates and redirecting to another page using credentials (URL check)

Users can also now hide any activity’s result from the Active Logs and database by adding [hide] to any of the fields in the activity.

For more information on the eyeShare product or to download your free 30-day trial and start using it today, please click here.

IT Leaders! Using Automated Workflows to Take that Much Needed Vacation

IT Leaders! How to Prepare Your Team for Your Much Needed VacationYou’ve worked hard all year, putting in endless hours and a tireless effort to keep your company’s IT operations running efficiently. It’s time to take some much-needed time off – you deserve it! But before you tidy up your desk, set your “out of office” message and shut your system down for a week (or two), here’s a checklist of must-do tasks to ensure that while you’re gone, the business will still run as smoothly as can be and you won’t have to worry about getting frantic calls while you’re trying to relax on the beach.

Prepare Ahead

A few weeks prior to your vacation, make a detailed list of the top IT tasks you perform on regular basis. Then, use this list to create automated workflows for these tasks. Instead of having to train other staff members and risk the chance of something going wrong or slipping through the cracks, these IT automation workflows will do your job for you while you’re gone!

Bring Your Team Up to Speed

Take some time to show your staff what you have accomplished, what automated workflows you’ve created and what these workflows will do in your absence. That way, while you are gone your team will be able to tackle more tasks without having to call you every time an alert goes off.

Program Alerts

Program your system properly so that if something goes wrong, the alerts that are not related to you go to the right people. If possible, entrust one team member to step in and handle any specific alerts that would normally be handled by you. This way you can enjoy your time off without interruption.

Be Proactive

Prepare automated workflows for worst case scenario (i.e., a mission-critical service failure), and prepare an automated remediation process for that, so if and when an issue occurs, there will be a plan in place to automatically resolve it. When you come back to work, no one will know you even went on vacation!

Relax and Have Fun!

The life of an IT professional is hectic and stressful by nature. Nobody earns time off like us! So, once you’ve done all of the above, it’s time to relax. Grab a good book, pack your bags, sip on a cocktail and have some fun! When you have the right plan in place backed by automated workflow technology, you won’t have to worry about what’s going on back at the office and you can enjoy your well-deserved time off.

Dreading your next vacation and the mess you’ll have to come back to? IT process automation can help you manage your IT operations so efficiently that the department will practically run itself when you’re away. Get started today with these 10 things you should be automating.