The discipline of ITSM has undergone significant evolution since its earliest incarnations. Today with the drive towards automation, increasing use of artificial intelligence, and the push for digital transformation, ITSM occupies an increasingly high-profile position for many organizations. This is especially true as many enterprises are seeking competitive advantages in their customer experience and service quality offerings.
With that in mind, we’ve partnered with Cherwell, an increasingly common ITSM platform choice for many of our customers, to demonstrate how to create an outstanding experience for Cherwell ITSM users.
According to Gartner, it isn’t too surprising why Cherwell’s popularity is on the rise. In a recent report they wrote that “Cherwell continues to enjoy mind share among Gartner clients looking at intermediate ITSM tools. Cherwell was the second most frequently shortlisted vendor by Gartner clients in 2018.” BTW – Cherwell held that same distinction in 2017 as well. So Gartner is seeing the same increase in demand for Cherwell that we’ve been seeing.
Gartner has also identified Cherwell as a “Challenger” in its most recent Magic Quadrant for ITSM tools which was just published in August of 2019. So there seems to be a lot of momentum building in the ITSM market for Cherwell.
Since Ayehu is very customer-driven, we give priority to developing new features and new integrations based on what our customers are asking for the most. As a result, we’ve added some Cherwell-specific functionality lately, and we think that many Cherwell customers will be intrigued to see how much more they can do with the platform, once it’s integrated with Ayehu.
For those not familiar with their ITSM solution, Cherwell transforms the way businesses deliver service. Its technology provides a centralized system through which all services can be managed and monitored. This gives unprecedented visibility to all processes, helping teams measure and manage services more effectively and efficiently.
Along with nearly 100 technology alliance partners (like Ayehu), Cherwell aims to help customers modernize their IT service management. Today, Modern Service Management is foundational to transforming the experience of employees (ITSM users).
Before explaining why though, let’s define Modern Service Management (MSM).
MSM is the evolution from legacy ITSM practices with minimal impacts on the business and its employees, to a philosophy in practice that leverages self-service, automation, visibility and agility to generate business outcomes and improve employee experiences.
The visual below from Forrester Research shows that in the past, automation associated with digital initiatives focused on cost reduction. More recently however, the focus has been around customer experience (CX), as more companies take a customer-centric approach.
By 2020 the focus will shift to accelerating transformation with both Employee Experience (EX) and CX automation initiatives — because employee experience has a direct correlation to employee happiness and efficiency, which in turn impacts customer experience. As businesses continue moving up the ladder of ITSM maturity, speed and efficiency won’t just be critical for customer facing apps, but will also be expected across the entire organization.
So what’s stopping businesses from transforming their service experiences? In general, they lack a centralized way to architect and automate end-to-end processes across multiple services, systems, and teams. The four primary barriers to achieving this transformation include:
- Disparate Systems
Individual services and departments within a business often have their own systems and tools. This not only impacts employee experience, but it impedes businesses from monitoring the performance of services, and cross-functional processes, due to lack of centralized visibility across all systems.
- Fragmented Data
Since many services run on legacy databases, integrating data sets across services can be difficult and time consuming.
- Manual Service Steps
Most businesses struggle to integrate data, systems, and processes, leaving many teams stuck in an endless cycle of using antiquated systems to get their work done. Whether they’re responding to service requests, onboarding a new employee, or managing the maintenance logs of a fleet of vehicles — this creates inefficiencies and challenges in keeping up with service requests.
- Resource Intensiveness Required to Transform Digital Operations
Often times architecting new services, and evolving existing processes, requires teams of developers to write code. This is both time consuming and expensive.
This is where Cherwell integrated with Ayehu automation can help businesses.
If you’re currently a Cherwell customer or have it as one of your shortlisted vendors, then you may already be asking yourself whether you should add automation to Cherwell. And if you do add automation, what kind of boost would it give to your investment in Cherwell?
To determine that, it helps to look at some costs associated with helpdesk operations.
Based on Ayehu’s research conducting standard helpdesk data assessments for organizations, we’ve discovered that the 5 largest categories of incidents represent as much as 98% of their total tickets!
When those incident numbers get sliced and diced to see how many get handled by Tier 1 vs Tier 2 support, they often reveal a surprise.
As much as 70% of Tier 1 incidents get escalated to Tier 2!
That means that if you can somehow focus your automation efforts on just the 5 largest categories of incidents while they’re still in tier 1, automation is going to provide a very big payoff, not just at your service desk but in your customer satisfaction metrics as well.
Now, let’s take a closer look at what kind of a return we’re looking at from automation.
If we go real conservative by estimating that it costs $20 to remediate a ticket, then multiply that by the number of tickets your helpdesk handles, it’s likely going to add up to some serious money your organization is spending on manually resolving these incidents. (BTW – $20 per ticket is a rough number calculated by Jeff Rumburg of MetricNet for 2017)
Now I’m going to shock some of you. If you automate incident resolution, your cost per ticket drops down to $4, and that’s also playing it conservative. Applying automation to incident resolution has a dramatic effect on your costs, so if you’re looking for a high-impact way to bring savings to your organization’s ITSM costs, automation is a pretty good way to go.
In case you’re wondering what kinds of specific incidents you would likely be automating with Ayehu, here are some of the most common processes we see:
- Application/Service/Process/Server Restarts
- Monitoring Application Log Files, looking for specific keywords, and taking some action based on what’s found
- Low disk space remediation (always a popular thing to automate)
- Running SQL Queries, perhaps at 3am then compiling the results into a report which gets emailed to appropriate personnel
- Onboarding and offboarding employees (another popular one)
And there are many, many more tasks the service desk will want to automate for itself. Now how about the kinds of processes we can push out to end users to remediate in a self-help paradigm?
- Password Resets or Account Unlocks are an obvious one
- How about letting users provision their own VM’s whether it’s VMware, AWS, Azure, or Hyper-V?
- And how about letting them modify or resize a VM’s memory or disk space without any help from the service desk?
When you think about it, there’s really no limit to the kinds of things you can automate, once you’ve integrated Ayehu with Cherwell.