Using myriads of IT services is near mandatory in an overwhelming number of organizations- worldwide. Without utilizing IT services, entities belonging to industries like healthcare, hospitality, food services, FMCG, and insurance will find it difficult to operate and sustain in the fiercely competing world. Utilizing such IT services is required for multiple operations including product and service promotions, advertising, customer relationship handling etc. These organizations often resort to the deployment of ITSM to make sure diverse type of IT services are executed and handled properly. IT Service Management denotes application and management of different IT services in planned and systematic ways. Its deployment ensures businesses can meet their objectives without hiccups. Trained and skilled IT service providers handle ITSM deployment and the processes involve an intricate blend of technology, process, and users.
Getting basics of ITSM clear
The term ‘IT Services’ is often used loosely and it covers different types of networking technologies, software applications, Hardware assets, web-based services and more. In an organization, the ITSM team is responsible for handling or fixing problems related to these and performing necessary troubleshooting too. They also ensure things keep running smoothly to ensure the objectives are met. These teams make use of various ITSM tools and frameworks. The widely used ITSM frameworks are Microsoft Operations Framework, Six Sigma, and The COBIT framework, Kaizen, FitSM, and TOGAF.
Deploying ITSM in a company- the reality
Like anything related to IT, the way ITSM tools are used in business has also undergone changes. The days of IT teams relying mostly on standalone software and hardware peripherals are gone! With the blazing fast internet becoming more widespread and cheaper with time, more companies prefer to use cloud-based ITSM frameworks. This has made ITSM more cost effective and easier to manage.
Improving ITSM is a pressing need
Deploying a suitable ITSM tool is vital for ensuring smooth workflow and meeting goals in an organization- it is no ‘set it and forget it’ kind of thing! ITSM is not static and without periodic tweaks and enhancements – its purpose will be defeated. Starting with a suitable ITSM solution is feasible but over time some modifications may have to be made to it. If the company’s ITSM strategy is not modified to cater to shifting end-user needs – the output cannot be attained. So, improving the existing ITSM strategy of your company can be a prime need. The strategy may comprise components like problem management, change management, incident management, service catalog etc.
Ways to improve the ITSM strategy of the organization
For improving existing ITSM strategy and setup of a company – it is crucial to think from the end-user’s perspective. The ITSM strategy is, after all, being put in place to meet their expectations better. The ITSM deployment and improvement procedures should not be complicated and the employees should be able to embrace the changes without many hurdles.
The following steps can be used to improve and tweak ITSM strategy of the company:
- Monitoring process enhancement – In all ITSM frameworks/tools there are options for monitoring various processes and workflow. With time, the organization keeps growing and more processes may be involved. So, the system should be enhanced to ensure the monitoring procedures in the ITSM setup have to be augmented. This will ensure the workforce can attain expected output and productivity is not compromised.
- Augmenting the knowledgebase with updated, relevant content – You need to understand the customers are now smarter and they have become more knowledgeable. Most of them can find answers to their queries by using the web within a few minutes. So, the organization’s knowledge base should be augmented over time to meet user needs better. The users should not find it tedious to locate answers to their queries. If they face hassles in the process-that defeat the whole purpose of deploying ITSM tool.
- Simplifying of approvals for processes – The ITSM processes get handled in any organization by a team and the workforce needs to work in perfect sync. Collaboration between various departments is also necessary. So, the existing ITSM system has to be simplified and changes have to be made for making approvals and configurations are simple. The company employees should be able to access the database and retrieve data without spending much time. They should not have problems in sharing information between departments.
- Using SLAs – It is better that customers get a clear understanding of the type and extent of support offered by the company. This can be applied to the company’s services and products. This is possible by defining the Service Level Agreement or SLA. Doing this essentially sets the expectation for the end users of your entity. Besides, the ITSM team can also keep a tab on quality of service being offered to the end users. This also reduces chances of conflict with the users.
- Making use of inputs from users – At times, it may be hard to understand the woes faces by end users even though you put in efforts to modify the ITSM framework. So, you would do better by collecting their inputs as well as ideas for service improvement. This can come in handy for user interface enhancement and enhancement of service request generation.
- Embracing emerging technologies – The Company’s ITSM framework have to be enhanced with new technologies from time to time. This is necessary for staying ahead in the rat race. The UI, for example, should appear same across various OS and mobile platforms. It will be a necessity to cater to evolving need of end users.
- Enhancing and simplifying support access – The companies using ITSM framework or tool offer support provisions for their end users, as it is. You should ensure the tool used in your company has support for multiple channels for users who want support. In most cases, the companies offer support to the end users through methods like email, live chat, IVRS etc. The individual means should be simple to use.
- Augmenting the CMDB – In every ITSM setup, the presence of CMDB/ Configuration Management Database is of utmost importance. It is a unique and huge data repository which is used mostly for comprehensive configuration management. A component of the ITIL framework, its major functions include finding, controlling and tracking all IT assets and storing configuration data. For multiple types of ITSM processes and aligning those processes with company goals- decisions need to be taken on accurate, updated information. That is why CMDB is important. This data is accessed and utilized mostly by the system administrators and IT admins to resolve problems and deal with problems better. By using CMDB, preparing for an upcoming event of the entity becomes easier. When the CMDB is fully integrated with the ITSM tool, finding the root of any hardware or networking snag can be hassle-free- for example. So, augmenting the CMDB and ensuring tight integration with ITSM framework is necessary.
Summing it all up
Using a suitable ITSM tool is necessary for most entities nowadays but that alone is not adequate! Improving the framework is a must to cater to end-user requirements over the years. This can be done in multiple ways and listen to the end users is also vital.