In this blog post, you’ll find a small taste of our third e-Core Connections podcast episode: “IT Service Management (ITSM), Delivering IT Services, and Optimizing Efficiency”. Hosted by Bruce Guptill from Addressable Markets LLC, the podcast explores digital transformation including: thriving in a digital-first world, modernizing IT to the cloud, aligning IT initiatives with business goals, and the rules of the cloud gate. You’ll find information specifically about ITSM adaptability and predictability as key to surviving and thriving during disruption. This episode also covers the evolution of service delivery from ITIL to ITSM, ITSM security and compliance plus much more.
ITSM + Cloud = Efficient Use of Distributed Resources
We have said previously that the cloud is a means for doing business, not an end in itself. What that means is that companies that optimize how Cloud is used will optimize their own ability to do business. So how can we do this? How can we ensure success in building, optimizing, and utilizing Cloud for business?
One critical element is to make it work! Cloud is the foundation of an ever-increasing array of IT capabilities, delivered as services from productivity software, to help desks to infrastructure to microservices that enable efficient use of distributed resources, everything to help keep users engaged and productive.
So, in this third episode, we’re talking with Rob Schaefer about IT service management (ITSM). ITSM is simply how IT organizations and teams manage the delivery of IT services to their users. This includes all the processes and all the actions and activities to design, create, deliver and support IT services for end-users. Rob himself is an expert in this field. He’s an experienced channel and sales leadership expert with a focus on ITSM and security. He’s the principal for channel ITSM Business Development with collaboration and team enablement vendor Atlassian Software and we’re very very glad to have them in our podcast.
Trends and current challenges affecting how Enterprise IT and Business Leaders understand ITSM
Bruce: There’s a lot that’s been happening, there’s a lot of change in markets around the world when it comes to IT, when it comes to everything delivered and used as a service. I’m assuming that this is affecting how Enterprise IT and Business Leaders need to think about and understand ITSM. Are there some key changes, some key issues that you’ve seen developing over the last couple of years as we’re rethinking how we use IT in this distributed fashion, more than ever before?
Rob: Absolutely. IT service management has become essential through the pandemic. Better collaboration, better ability to get access to IT service people, and report incidents and challenges that you have when you’re working from home or working remotely it’s more important than ever! Many companies are going to global workforces, with people in different time zones, in different countries, very widespread. So, the ability to have a very effective service desk not just for IT but for any department in the company where people are requesting Services, requesting products, and any needs that are going on becomes critical to managing a remote workforce.
Bruce: The remote and mobile Workforce is a big theme in all kinds of business, but especially business IT, there’s been so much change: a lot of it very very dramatic, not all of it good. I’d like to get a sense of the scale of importance of ITSM in this continually emerging and shifting environment. It’s not all remote or work from home, it is a combination of hybrid types of environments and, as you pointed out, we’re going to more globalized work forces, which means that resources are going to be scattered or are already scattered all over the place. That must be a significant challenge for IT organizations and Business Leaders to get their arms around.
Rob: Absolutely! Years ago we called it the Service Desk. And the software powered the service desk where reactive tools took in incidents that have already happened. Today service management means that it’s more predictive. I can predict a problem, I can see it into the infrastructure, it’s tied to every aspect of the organization and it has the pulse of what’s going on from an IT perspective. In recent years, that’s been expanded to include other departments, when we all call it Enterprise service management, which is basically taking the ITIL in the ITSM ways of working and applying it to any Department in the organization and tying it all back by IT.
ITSM Adaptability and Predictability as key to Surviving and Thriving During Disruption
Bruce: I want to talk a little bit more about predictability. I’d like to understand more about what kind of predictability are we talking about here. When the system needs to know something, what kinds of development, change, or triggers is it looking for? And how is that helping the IT organization and the end-user take more and better advantage of ITSM?
Rob: When you get into a true Service Management platform, it typically has an asset and configuration management tool baked in. What that’s allowing you to do is track assets within the organization and those can be software assets, Hardware assets, some platforms like Atlassian allow you to track people as assets. But each asset in an IT department, each node on your network server, and each integration has to be monitored, and identifying a potential flaw there is critical. So, on the asset side, I want to know that I don’t have any aging equipment, I don’t want to have any equipment in my organization that may be out of warranty and, therefore, out of compliance with security protocols. I want to make sure that all my patches are up-to-date and all of these things are predictions of how secure and how reliable your network is going to be. So, that’s the aspect that really needs to be covered to make sure that your organization’s productive in that area. Does that answer your question?
Bruce: It does! Let’s talk a little bit about the future. We’ve seen a very very disruptive past few years. Things were already getting rather disruptive with an accelerating and expanding move toward more digital business, and Agility, and adaptability by just about every kind and size of firm and just about every Market, some more than others. Then, of course, we had the end of the covid-19 challenge, which I like to under-emphasize if I can, but obviously, it has been a tremendous disruption. What do we need to do to be prepared for the next round of disruption? We don’t really know what it’s going to be, and we don’t know when it’s going to happen, but how can and should the user Enterprise be ready with its IT service management capabilities? Because if we don’t know where people are going to be, and we’re not really sure how everything from political unrest to supply chain disruption is going to affect our IT environment, what do our platform and our services need to be able to do? How adaptable, then, do they need to be? Are there any key capabilities that we want to make sure are included?
Rob: When you’re looking for the next global challenge, you have to be prepared for it. So, if you’re running an IT group and IT department, you have to always be looking at your tools, looking at your software platforms, and infrastructure. You have to be ready for the next big thing. So, adaptability is huge, I’m glad you brought that up. Being able to adapt to new situations, and to bring different groups within the organization supported by the service management platform is very key and the partner plays a big role in making sure that the client is ready for that. Working in IT there are a lot of smart people in every organization, they’re always looking for outside influence, outside expertise. If I’m in banking, I want to bring in a consultant who has worked in banking, who knows what my competitors are doing as far as service management and has ideas that fit my business, and understands my business needs. From a platform perspective, I want a tool it’s not going to be unpredictable as far as cost. I want to know that from what I’m paying for and Licensing, I’m getting every bit of value out of it. I want to know that I’m not going to be overspending on services to just maintain the software or be held back by upgrades or things like that. That might be disruptive and costly to maintain on the platform. So those are some key considerations there.
Bruce: There’s a pretty important need, then, for Enterprise IT and business organization leaders to be working together, as well as with if somebody like Atlassian and somebody like e-Core, or other services Partners. But I think as in most cases, the real key here is Enterprise IT and Business Leaders need to be able to really collaborate, to really make sure that they’re able to see and respond, hopefully before things happen.
Rob: Absolutely! And those are key aspects of IT, as well as all of those groups that I mentioned outside of IT. It’s not just collaborating in IT, it’s collaborating on how you work. It’s work management in other areas that my company is involved in. What’s unique in some cases is being able to bring in a service management tool that can transcend the ordinary. And, by that, I mean transcend just being a little better than a service desk tool, something that it is using that no one else can take advantage of. IT has the burden of maintaining it for everyone because they’re working in silos, right? And, then, hierarchies that are cumbersome. They may have great value and maintaining control over the configuration of the platform in the security of the platform, but there are ways of maintaining security and configuration without maintaining silos and hierarchies. So, I think, as we move forward, that’s very important to look at. Are the tools that you’re using really meeting your needs? Are flexible enough? Are they costing you more than the value you’re getting out of them? Are you getting a good Roi on those tools? Are there surprise updates that you’re having to do on the tools? Are they outdated? Are they not really built so well for today’s modern Cloud, today’s microservices architecture? Are they able to be upgraded on the fly as new features come in? can they automatically be updated?
Bruce: All right, Rob, here’s another question. Your best friend has just been made responsible for making ITSM work within his or her organization and work sustainably over the course of the next two, to three. to five years. What are the key things that they need to think about? What would you tell them to be prepared for? And what kind of needs should they anticipate?
If you wanna find out Rob’s advice for his fictional best friend, click here and listen to our podcast e-Core Connections!
e-Core delivers technology Consulting and development services that help high-growth and established companies innovate, scale, and transform. You can also email us at [email protected] about any topics or questions that you may have. Please Subscribe and stay tuned for our next episode!