Posts

IT service management from a different perspective

To date, IT Service Management has consistently been viewed as simply part of the IT infrastructure library (ITIL) processes. However, with the looming shift of IT operations from fragmented services to a more end-to-end, service-driven approach, the concept of ITSM is poised to play an increasingly critical role in business operations. In order to successfully navigate this shift toward service, IT professionals must essentially rethink what this practice is really about and how it will serve their organizations going forward.

The Original Intention of IT Service Management

When it was first developed, IT Service Management was intended to bring a more unified approach to how IT technology services were integrated within the organization as a whole. Rather than managing individual components, ITSM focused on developing a collection of best practice processes (ITIL) and using these best practices to deliver end-to-end services. Organizations would conduct ITSM audits which analyzed things such as ROI, budget adherence, and the effectiveness of communication and identifying and evaluating risk. The purpose was to identify areas that needed improvement so that IT services could be better honed to benefit the entire organization.

What’s missing?

While ITSM is still a concrete practice, in order to be truly effective it must evolve along with the changes of IT as a whole. What’s missing from the original concept of ITSM is the end-user – the customer. Internal processes may have been improved significantly, but if these improvements don’t translate to the customer, it’s not a true victory.

How can IT professionals change their perspective of IT Service Management?

In order to get the most out of ITSM, people must begin to shift their view from strictly internal to also include external benefit. The easiest way to do this is to simply drop the “IT” from ITSM and replace it with automation. This essentially expands the benefit of ITSM from the internal operations of the enterprise to also improve the customer experience through the delivery of faster outcomes, higher quality service and at a much more attractive price. Internal processes are streamlined and made more efficient, while external service also improves. It’s a win-win.

If businesses are going to be successful in the future, they must leverage new and changing technology to truly deliver the unique and unparalleled experiences that their customers are seeking. Adjusting the concept of ITSM to incorporate intelligent automation into the mix will accomplish this goal, providing the competitive advantage needed to thrive in the coming years.

Experience how ITSM automation can be a game changer by downloading your free 30-day trial of Ayehu today.

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

How to Stay Relevant in the Changing World of ITSM

When it comes to continual improvement, the focus often lands on systems, processes, applications and policies. What it tends to neglect is the importance of keeping human skills up to date. The fact is, the world around us is changing and the skills and abilities that were once considered valuable are not at risk of becoming obsolete. Today’s ITSM professionals must be diligent about developing and honing the skills and knowledge that will be needed in the future. Here’s a bit of advice on how to do just that.

Technology has evolved over the years. Whereas in the past an IT tech may have required in-depth experience using an oscilloscope and soldering iron to diagnose and repair computer problems, today an entirely different set of trouble-shooting skills are needed. Those who continue to realize success in ITSM are the ones that recognize and adapt to the changes as they are occurring. If one were to try and make a living using an oscilloscope in this day and age, they simply wouldn’t be marketable.

This same concept applies to just about any skill that one has developed over the years. If you became versed in ITSM a decade ago, chances are you learned all about the importance of having well-planned and documented processes or that defining metrics and reporting them in SLAs was critical. These things aren’t necessarily obsolete (yet). It’s just that, they’re simply no longer enough. It seems that every day we’re uncovering newer and better ways to manage incidents, deal with problems and engage with customers.

To remain relevant and continue to deliver value as an ITSM specialist, there are three key areas you should be concentrating on, as follows.

Focus on Agile Principles

A shift has occurred between delivering software and/or service to delivering value. Agile service management, in simplest of terms, means working smarter and watching solutions evolve through strategic collaboration. These days, customers want instant gratification. Launching massive projects that take months or years before they produce value are no longer acceptable. Instead, ITSM professionals should take an agile approach – one which involves continuous experimentation, ongoing learning and rapid adaptation.  

In short, focus on the following:

  • Pinpoint what could be improved upon
  • Develop a hypothesis around what’s standing in the way of progress
  • Establish a plan for fail-safe experimentation
  • Experiment, measure results and proceed accordingly

Go Lean

If you’re unfamiliar, the concept of “Lean” focuses on creating and delivering maximum value to the customer while minimizing waste. In terms of ITSM, the most relevant facets of Lean include:

  • Identifying end-to-end value chains
  • Mapping out specific steps to ensure full understanding of the work
  • Eliminating waste in every area to create maximum value
  • Ensuring that every action is value-added

Emulate DevOps

Many individuals involved in ITSM are under the false impression that DevOps is solely about development. As such, they miss a tremendous opportunity to (you guessed it) create value for the customer. There are five key DevOps characteristics ITSM teams can mirror:

  • Culture
  • Intelligent Automation
  • Lean Policies
  • Continual Process Improvement
  • Collaboration

These qualities can just as easily be applied to IT service management as they are in development.

Closing Thoughts…

The previous approaches to ITSM aren’t necessarily wrong. We still need to deal with change, manage incidents and resolve problems. But it’s how we go about doing these things efficiently and effectively that has to evolve. There are many new approaches that, if adopted, can help ITSM professionals do their jobs better and create more value, both for their employers as well as their customers. Those who are willing to adapt their skillset accordingly will be the ones who win the opportunities of tomorrow.

And remember – having an agile tool in your corner can’t hurt either. Ayehu’s Next Generation Automation platform is designed to streamline ITSM while freeing up agents to focus on honing and applying their evolving skills most effectively. Now you can try it free for 30 days by clicking here.

Upcoming Webinar: How to Integrate Amazon Web Services with ServiceNow in Minutes

AWS SNOWAmazon Web Services (AWS) is the undisputed leader of the cloud computing market.  According to Gartner,  AWS offers “…over 10 times more cloud IaaS compute capacity in use than the aggregate total of the other 14 providers in this Magic Quadrant.”  Meanwhile, ServiceNow’s best-of-breed cloud-based ITSM platform is undeniably the most prominent vendor in its market and, according to Gartner, appears on client shortlists “…at more than double the frequency of any other vendor”.

Clearly these two tech titans rule the cloud, but up until now, it hasn’t been easy integrating AWS with ServiceNow to leverage both of their strengths together on one platform. With eyeShare, however, this is now possible. More importantly, it can be achieved in just minutes.

Please join us on Wednesday April 27th for a live, virtual demonstration of how AWS can quickly and easily be integrated with ServiceNow, enabling an entirely new class of self-service for your end-users.  Using eyeShare’s IT process automation capabilities, we’ll demonstrate how resource provisioning requests that burden your service desk can be turned into automated workflows that end-users trigger on their own with just a few simple mouse clicks.

This webinar will demonstrate:

  • Current AWS resource provisioning conventions
  • Integrating AWS with ServiceNow
  • Off-loading AWS requests from your service desk to end users via a self-service portal
  • Fully documenting each provisioning event in ServiceNow

It’s a demo that will leave you dancing in the clouds. But don’t wait – registration is limited and full attendance is anticipated. Sign up now to reserve your spot and discover how easy it can be to integrate these two cloud computing giants and harness their joint capabilities for the benefit of your IT organization.

To register and reserve your spot, please click here.

LIVE WEBINAR: HOW TO INTEGRATE AMAZON WEB SERVICES WITH SERVICENOW IN MINUTES




The Value of Service Management and Automation to Your Organization

The Value of Service Management and Automation to Your OrganizationThe concept of Service Management and Automation (SMA) is a particularly broad one. As such, there is often some confusion as to what it really entails and, more importantly, the value it lends to an organization. Many people, even IT professionals, mistakenly place more emphasis on the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) rather than SMA, simply because they both involve the adoption of a best practice process model. In fact, ITIL is merely a component of well-developed SMA initiatives.

According to research conducted by Forrester, in partnership with the USA chapter of the IT Service Management Forum (ITSMF), nearly all large US organizations have adopted some type of ITIL-based approach for their overall Service Management and Automation. Additionally, approximately 60% of IT organizations have embraced ITIL v3 for their operations.

What does this mean in terms of the future and the big picture for IT? It means that an increasing number of businesses will begin seeing the benefits of broad SMA programs. These benefits include: 

Increased Productivity

Standardized best practices reduce the risk of error and simplify execution, naturally improving the overall productivity of the organization. Automation of manual, repetitive tasks frees up personnel to be able to focus on more important, business critical responsibilities. Instead of having to deal with problems after they occur, staff can prevent them from ever happening. IT automation delivers a level of productivity that simply cannot be achieved through manual efforts.

Enhanced Level of Service

When processes are clearly defined and expertly deployed, there is a significant reduction in errors, producing a subsequent boost in service levels. End users and customers will begin to hold their service providers in a higher regard. This, in turn, creates and fosters a sense of loyalty and provides a certain competitive advantage for the organization.

Improved Reputation

One of the most important components of an IT organization’s viability is its reputation. It only stands to reason, then, that by improving the processes that are in place, both internally and externally, the overall view of the enterprise as a whole will be improved. Better output begets better input and it becomes an ongoing cycle of improvement. If the services of an organization are consistently deemed to be quality and trustworthy, the organization itself will be viewed in the same respect.

Reduced Operational Costs

There isn’t a successful business on the market today that isn’t concerned, to some degree, about budget. You simply can’t be profitable unless you find ways to reduce operational costs and expenses.  While ITIL and SMA do require some investments in order to achieve the benefits above, if they are deployed and managed successfully, those investments will see significant return over time. What’s more, as Service Management and Automation efforts continue to improve and mature, the impact on operational cost reduction will also continue to improve. It’s becoming increasingly evident that as technology evolves, the adoption of ITIL as a component of a robust and comprehensive Service Management and Automation initiative will become essential to the success of any organization.





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




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


Benefits of Combining IT Service Management (ITSM) and Automation

Benefits of Combining IT Service Management (ITSM) and AutomationIT professionals are probably already aware of the many benefits IT service management (ITSM) and automation present when used individually. What many have still not taken advantage of, however, is the enhanced positive impact combining the two together (ITSM automation) can have on both operations as well as the business as a whole. Here’s how.

First, let’s examine some of the many benefits of IT process automation on its own:

  • Lower cost of operations
  • Reduction of costly human errors
  • Faster process execution
  • Adaptability and scalability based on changing business and IT needs
  • Ability to adjust to the ever-shrinking pool of IT resources
  • Taking repetitive, menial tasks from skilled IT personnel so they can focus their efforts more effectively

Now, let’s take a look at some of the specific advantages IT  service management has for a company, based on a report by Forester:

  • 85% improvement in staff productivity, allowing the business to become more competitive
  • 83% improvement in quality of service, which increases uptime and enhances customer service
  • 65% improvement in reputation of the business
  • 41% reduction in operational costs – money which can be reinvested in newer and more innovative initiatives

As you can see, some of the benefits of each of these disciplines when used individually overlap.

Finally, let’s go over some of the ways combining the two into IT service management automation can further enhance these benefits.

  • Reduces the need to depend on people, as best practices are clearly defined and IT automation is leveraged to allow technology to do the heavy lifting
  • Subsequent reduction in people dependency brings with it a greater cost savings to the company as a whole
  • Enhanced reduction in human error
  • Accelerated and improved incident response process
  • Greater IT service delivery process, which improves both internal service levels and external customer satisfaction

These incredible results make it that much clearer that ITSM automation is the way of the future when it comes to leveraging both IT best practices and sophisticated process automation tools. Where one alone can be powerful, combining the two will bring business benefits to the next level.

Are you ready to develop and implement an effective IT service management automation strategy for your organization? It all begins with a simple download.

Start your free 30 day trial today and learn firsthand how you can put this strategic combination to work for your business!





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