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Implementing A New ITSM Tool – Creating A Strategic Vision for Project and Change Management

IT organizations know there’s a lot more that goes into obtaining the benefits of  IT Service Management (ITSM) software than simply identifying the need for a new ITSM tool, purchasing a platform and seeing the results.

To realize all of the benefits of ITSM, you need the right processes in place – especially when it comes to change and project management. And anytime you implement a new process within an organization it isn’t going to be smooth sailing until you have internal buy-in and training.

That’s why having a plan and solid processes in place for implementation are essential for any IT organization that wants to adopt a new ITSM platform.

By taking the time to map out your existing ITSM processes and establish best practices, you can ensure that your implementation is successful and that you realize all of the benefits that come with your new platform.

Legacy Supply Chain Services, a third-party logistics provider that helps clients enhance the performance of their supply chains, recently switched to TeamDynamix for IT Service Management. 

“Our previous tool worked great, but it was very limiting when it came to scaling our IT services and growing what we wanted to do,” Keyon Farrier, service desk manager, said. “We really needed an ITSM tool that was an extension of our current IT infrastructure team. We wanted a system that could be self-sufficient and really act like an added member of our team.”

Farrier said they began their search for a better, more structured tool using the services of Info-Tech, a technology consulting and research firm.

“We started our search with Info-Tech looking at just change management tool to add to our existing ITSM tool at the time, then realized we also wanted to find a tool that could help us automate processes,” he said. “Info-Tech provided us with some great options, so we started the vetting process and found that TeamDynamix really fit our needs – not just for change management and automation, but for everything.”

For Ferrier, and many others, enlisting the help of an outside group to find the right ITSM tool can be helpful.

While Info-Tech offered several vendors for evaluation, they ultimately chose TeamDynamix based on the guidance they received.

“We found TeamDynamix because it was listed as a Leader in Info-Tech’s quadrant for ITSM,” Farrier noted.

First Step: Gain Buy-In Internally

Before embarking on the journey of implementing ITSM software, it’s important to assess your organization’s unique needs and determine the essential system requirements. Here are some key considerations:

  • Scalability: Choose a solution that can grow with your business, accommodating future expansions and integrations.
  • Customization: Opt for a flexible solution that can be tailored to your organization’s specific processes and workflows.
  • Security: Ensure that the ITSM software complies with industry security standards and safeguards sensitive information.
  • Integration: The software should seamlessly integrate with your existing tools and systems, such as ticketing systems, monitoring tools and reporting platforms.

“Talk to your help desk employees,” Farrier advised—the people who are on the front lines of doing the IT work. “Get their input into the challenges they’re facing, and then come up with a plan that can help alleviate those challenges.”

In looking for an ITSM platform that would help the team accomplish their goals, Farrier engaged his support staff in the search process, as “they’re the ones who deal with the system daily,” he explained. “They might sometimes be the forgotten folks, the ones who stay behind their laptop handling tickets. Yet, they’re the ones who know what it will take to make the system better.”

Once you have your ideal ITSM software selected, and your processes around change management and project management in place, it’s time to ensure that everyone in the business is on the same page.

This isn’t always an easy task.

In order to succeed, you need to sell the concept of using your new ITSM for service delivery – as well as change and project management – at all levels of the organization, not just within IT or the executive level. And be prepared to be met with resistance, because there is never a good time to do an implementation of something like a new ITSM platform as there are always going to be competing business priorities.

Your keys to success here are having a solid strategic plan, a heavy education process and emphasizing the high level of usability of the platform.

If you begin to introduce a platform without a strategy you are going to get lost, asking yourself “What’s next?” and “What should I prioritize?”

Your lack of organization will be perceived negatively by employees and make them even less likely to buy into these new processes.

Educating your users is crucial as well, as many business professionals are unaware of just how beneficial ITSM can be when implemented correctly.

Lastly, you need to make sure that those in your organization know how usable these new processes will be organization-wide, not just within the IT department.

Specific organizational concepts and tasks that you should demonstrate on the ITSM platform in order to educate and thus obtain buy-in include:

  • Business value
  • Technical value
  • System consolidation
  • Paydown of technical debt
  • Cost savings
  • Risk reduction
  • Operational efficiency
  • Increased business engagement
  • Transparency

When you’re educating employees on the above, it is essential that you do so in non-technical language.

Using confusing and complex words and phrases that only IT personnel will understand will frustrate people, cause you to lose their attention, and cause you to ultimately not gain their support.

While this sounds like a lot of work and like it may take time, the return on investment is worth it and the gains and improvements you’ll see across your organization will be tremendous.

Once you have buy-in to move forward with new ITSM software, you’ll need a well-defined roadmap for implementation. This is crucial for a smooth and successful implementation. This involves setting clear objectives, timelines and milestones. Some steps to consider when building your roadmap include:

  1. Define the scope of the project, focusing on the most critical processes and features.
  2. Identify the stakeholders involved and their roles and responsibilities.
  3. Create a detailed timeline with milestones and deadlines.
  4. Establish a budget and allocate resources accordingly.

What You Need for Successful Implementation

Because having a strategy is so important in regards to the successful implementation of an ITSM platform, we’ve put together a three-step process you can use to guide the creation of your own implementation strategy:

  1. Inform of the opportunity– One TeamDynamix customer found the creation of an internal whitepaper about ITSM/ESM helpful to inform stakeholders within the company. He included appropriate terminology and kept it focused on business terms and values. The point of this was to introduce the concept and get leaders to think about transformation, maturity, and business enablement through technology.
  2. Define the current state– Conduct a benchmarking gap analysis and use the results to demonstrate how your organization measures against those in its peer group in an AS-IS maturity model.
  3. Prioritize and roadmap– Stack rank the results. Based on the gap analysis and vendor-recommended best practices, you can develop a priority order to show where your organization needs help the most – i.e., you might learn that incident management needs more immediate attention than design coordination.

In addition to following these steps, create a simple, organized visual that shows a timeline explaining what processes will be implemented at what time. You can include, along with this visual, a more in-depth spreadsheet that lays out the following details of each phase: what resources are required, the percent of time needed, what value it provides to the organization, the associated system retirement, and the associated cost reduction.

These two files will appeal to the non-technical audience and help to get them on board with the new ITSM solution.

In addition, Ferrier recommends finding a vendor that can help you optimize your processes.

Because IT staff often feel pulled in many directions and time is at a premium, “we try to lean on some of our vendors and partners for help” in implementing new software, Farrier said.

As part of their implementation process, Farrier and his team found they needed to reevaluate and revise key processes when configuring the platform – especially around creating a better self-service portal experience.  Here is where the ITSM software provider can also differ.  It was important for the team at Legacy to find a software partner that also offered process consulting and implementation services.

By spending a little more time on the planning, the company was better positioned for the actual migration.  With the plan in place, the implementation itself can go faster. “It put us in a better position to succeed,” Farrier observed.

After implementing the ITSM software, monitor its performance closely to identify areas for improvement. Gather feedback from end-users and stakeholders, and make necessary adjustments to enhance efficiency and user satisfaction. Additionally, provide comprehensive training for your team to ensure they are well-equipped to utilize the software effectively.

How Does TDX ITSM Support Change Management?

In many ways, change management is risk management and risk management is mitigated through effective resource management. With TeamDynamix ITSM, you can use your resources effectively, efficiently and economically. You can monitor resource capacity and have a complete view of what resources are available.

With great visibility, gained through various reports (i.e., change history reports), large implementations run smoothly. Even if something does go wrong, when conflicts are detected between scheduled changes and associated configuration items, your staff will see an alert.

Additionally, notifications of maintenance and blackout windows are communicated to staff to prevent untimely activities.

Automation within change management is also possible through the TeamDynamix platform. Changes can be automatically or manually triggered to follow pre-defined workflows. With this capability, change tickets flow through different steps and activities including tasks, approvals and web service calls.

How Does TDX ITSM Support Project Management?

Without effective project management, it’s difficult to meet timelines, stay on budget and utilize the proper resources within your organization.

TeamDynamix project management gives you the visibility and control that you need, ensuring you can see all potential impacts. You can easily optimize resources against multiple projects and tickets and are granted the ability to create project plans using a variety of methods. Staying on schedule and on budget is made easy with platform capabilities like:

  • Track and manage project issues and risks.
  • Track resource schedules, availability, and time estimates versus actual.
  • Create a stakeholder view to easily share project status and risk.
  • View project status across the entire portfolio.

Additionally, our platform comes with a long list of easy-to-use project tools:

  • Easily track team member activity.
  • Manage project documents in one place.
  • Budget tracking.
  • Time tracking.
  • Managing requests for change.
  • Project prioritization and scoring.

Ignoring clear signs of unorganized change and project management can have a catastrophic impact on your organization. If you want to learn more about all that IT service management can do for your team, check out the following pages: