A successful business cannot thrive in today’s world unless it focuses on ongoing improvement in every area of its operation. Stagnation is, in effect, the backward motion of progress. This is where the concept of Continual Service Improvement (CSI) comes into play. As the business grows and changes, CSI is applied to produce both small and large changes across every facet, from service to operational efficiency to business continuity. Yet true CSI cannot be accomplished, at least in terms of IT, without automation.
What is Continual Service Improvement?
In simplest of terms, continual service improvement examines past successes and failures to identify areas within a business that need to be changed, adapted and improved in order to make the organization as a whole more successful. In particular, the goal of the CSI process is to continually improve the efficiency and effectiveness of IT processes and services to help you for example to get mission-critical system back online in minutes.
What Areas can CSI be Applied?
The question should actually be what areas of your business could use improvement? The answer should inevitably be every area. However, CSI is typically a concept that is specifically aimed toward improving IT efficiency. An audit should be performed to identify those areas that are most in need of change, and then individual programs and projects can be defined, developed and prioritized based on the organization’s overall strategic objectives. In other words, CSI can effectively influence every phase of the business process, but is typically implemented in IT and in order of importance.
How Does IT Process Automation Fit In?
The basic foundation of a successful CSI process is an audit of existing processes. IT Process Automation tool provides the capability to conduct such audits in an efficient, accurate manner to quickly identify areas in need of improvement. With automation, organizations can define processes and the critical tasks and workflows associated with them, and then determine which of these areas could use the most improvement.
As each process and workflow is identified and completed, active, real-time assessments can be conducted. These assessments can be applied to any task-based process, such as incident management, problem management or change management. They can also be applied to non-IT processes, such as project management or any custom application, essentially broadening the spectrum and extending CSI across the entire organization.
Continuous service improvement (CSI) will be a greater focus for organizations in 2013. This is partly a result of the benefits of CSI being more widely understood, but also because vendor ITSM technologies are incorporating some innovative ways of helping enable CSI within IT departments,” said Adam Holtby, ITSM research analyst, Ovum.
As we close the books on 2012 and move toward a new year, the focus on continual service improvement will only increase. This is due in part to more and more businesses beginning to understand the benefits of embracing this concept, and realizing its affects across their entire organization. It’s also due to the fact that automation is delivering innovative ways to help businesses implement the CSI process with ease and efficiency, making it easy to incorporate the concept into the everyday operations and, in essence, the very culture of the business.