Don’t rush to blame your ITSM tool

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ITSM Management Tools

Why is that so often we ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’ in the ITSM world?

By this I mean that when our ITSM processes are not working the way we would like them to, we turn around and blame the tool, often opting to replace the ITSM toolset in an attempt to fix the defective processes. This results in a huge amount of wasted time, effort & money when, in the majority of cases, it is not the tool that is at fault. What is needed is an examination of current processes and a collaborative exercise to build processes that meet the business requirements. It is very likely that, once new processes are agreed, these can be handled by whatever toolset you are currently using.

The key to designing processes that really work is collaboration, bringing everyone who is likely to be affected by a process and how it works into the discussion. This will greatly increase the odds that the final product will be something that actually adds value to the business, rather than creating unnecessary overhead.

Building new processes that reflect business and IT requirements can allow you to ‘recycle’ your ITSM tool and the value that this brings to the business is on many levels.

Firstly, and probably the most obvious, is that you may not need to go out and spend money on a new tool. That is a very easy saving to measure – that saving alone will more than justify an investment in Navvia!

The second area where big savings can be made is in training. If you are able to build your new processes on your existing tool, then only minimal training will be needed to familiarize team members with the new process flow because the user interface of the tool is not going to change.

Thirdly, and not to be underestimated, is the greatly reduced chance of resistance, and therefore, a far lesser investment to be made in the organizational change side of the equation. By changing just one aspect of the way your IT team is working, just changing the process rather than the tool and the process, the expected negative effects of change will be much less. Therefore, the investment required in a program of cultural change will be substantially less, if not eliminated.

So often we see people rush to change the tool when there is dissatisfaction with the service that IT is providing. My advice is that you stop and really assess where the problem actually is before taking that step. Virtually any modern ITSM tool will be capable of doing everything that you need, and if you are not sure, then go and talk to your vendor and find out. Tool replacement is much larger than just the cost of the software, so make sure that there really are burning reasons for a change before you jump in and do it.

In some cases, a tool change will be the best option…read the next instalment in this series to avoid some of common mistakes that are made when moving to a new toolset.

David Mainville

David Mainville, CEO and co-founder of Navvia, is a passionate advocate of Service Management and a frequent presenter, blogger and well known member of the ITSM community. With over 35 years of experience, David has held progressively senior technical and management roles allowing him to "connect the dots" between the Business and IT. At Navvia, David leads the charge to bring innovative ITSM solutions to market focusing on Product Development, Marketing and Operations.

• Posted by David Mainville on Aug 25, 2016
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