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Why Extend Service Management Beyond IT

Posted by on February 06, 2018

Why Extend Service Management Beyond IT

Forrester recently wrote an insightful research report on “ESM: Elevate Service Value Beyond The Technology Organization, Enable Your Digital Business With This New Enterprise Platform.” ESM stands for enterprise service management, which has become the leading phrase describing the use of a service management platform to handle requests for both IT and non-IT functions. HR and facilities are commonly included as ESM generally applies to any department or area that is “handling tickets” and managing associated tasks. As such, basic customer service management (CSM), security incident management, and IT project tracking also commonly fall into the realm of ESM. Project tracking plus reporting and demand management activities commonly associated with project and portfolio management (PPM) is another potential ESM solution area also as they complement ITSM processes such as Problem, Change, and release management. And given that these are all potentially running on a common service management platform, custom built workflows, applications, or services are further logical extensions to ESM.

ESM Provides Stronger Service Delivery and Customer Satisfaction

Whew, that is a mouthful. Isn’t providing IT service management (ITSM) enough?

Yes, for many service desk organizations providing ITSM is challenging enough and more than a full-time commitment. For many other organizations, however, HR, facilities, and other requests are handled via common mailboxes, via spreadsheets, or maybe even sticky notes. In these situations, adding more structure to processes and tasks can improve the service delivered, visibility, and accountability. And, as more requests are submitted via self-service, it simplifies end-user or employee life to present the multiple functions in a common portal. A similar look and feel across the solutions improves the end-user experience, their productivity, and associated satisfaction.

An enterprise service management portal allows customers to submit and manage requests for both IT and non-IT functions.

An enterprise service management portal allows customers to submit and manage requests for both IT and non-IT functions.

On the request handling side, having multiple functions running on a common platform has additional benefits of sharing data. For example, when a new employee is onboarded this touches HR (setting up payroll), facilities (a new office set-up), security (new badge and physical access permissions), asset management (a new computer), and even IT (directory services). Another example could be dealing with a security breech touching asset management, configuration management, IT, and potentially HR or facilities. Having a single system of record and shared data facilitates faster request handling and resolution.

Considering Commercial Enterprise Applications

What about organizations or businesses using commercial enterprise applications?

It may or may not make sense to have certain solutions running on a common service management platform. For HR in particular, there are best-in-class solutions that will typically make more sense to integrate with the service management platform. In other areas such as security incident management, PPM, or Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC), a commercial application could have significantly more capabilities than the business will ever use. In these situations, the cost of software maintenance alone verses the value received could be better served by an ESM solution.

Digital Transformation

The Forrester report discusses the leverage and limits of ITSM processes, automation, low-code/codeless, and the future of service management in general. The report concludes saying that “within 10 Years, ESM will become the fabric for digital operations,” and I agree with this expecting that it will be sooner than 10 years for most businesses.

Next up: Download the free Forrester report to find out more about the value of ESM.

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