As we assess the current state of IT Service Management (ITSM), one of the most obvious places to start is by asking those involved in the discipline how mature their practices and technologies truly are. ITSM is hardly a new niche in the world of IT, but it is one that has tended to evolve very organically at most organizations. So, mileage can vary, even at very large organizations, as to how far along they are in formalizing processes, standardizing technology, and in keeping that technology stack updated. We decided to tackle these questions in a recent market study conducted together with Information Week.
Nearly half of the organizations surveyed state that they are on the low-end of the maturity scale, and only about 8% believe that they operate with a very high level of maturity where their ITSM software is fully optimized, and their IT group offers best-in-class service delivery through a formal program. At the same time, looking at the glass half full, the good news is that the majority-by-a-hair at 51% report a decent level of maturity with automation and at least some best practices in place.
Nevertheless, the results point to the fact that opportunities to improve performance and contain costs in a number of areas exist in the majority of organizations. To demonstrate those areas, we had respondents dive deeper into their maturity status by carving up their program into four major categories:
- IT service desk organizational structure and processes.
- Change management.
- Self-service and knowledge base design and
- Automation and workflow management.
We examine specific insights into each of these practice areas in the full study but if we look broadly at the maturity queries for each of these four, we see that organizations have made the most progress on the service desk structure and process development front, with 51% of them reporting high levels of maturity (Figure 1). Change management is close with 47% reporting high maturity—this is a crucial area since poor change management practices can lead to increased ticket volume, which perpetuates a vicious cycle of performance and cost woes.
ITSM Software Self-Service Portals & Knowledge Base Design
Meanwhile, automation and self-service functions remain areas for growth at most organizations, with 62% and 63% reporting low levels of maturity in these ITSM spheres, respectively. Achieving higher levels of maturity across the entire range will require organizations to address several challenges along the way. The study shows that some of the heaviest burdens ITSM programs face come by way of poorly optimized ITSM technology.
While management issues like a lack of resources or the inability to build a culture that drives self-service adoption, certainly plague at least a quarter to a third of organizations, the biggest issues are platform-related. Tops among them are the heavy reliance on IT to administer the system, which was named by 44% of respondents, followed closely by a lack of automation, which was named by 41% of organizations. Additionally, 36% of organizations said one of their biggest challenges was integration and workflow management, yet another platform-related issue.
Why Integration and Automation Matters for ITSM Software
By using an ITSM tool that includes integration and automation, you can free up your resources by automating the everyday, mundane tasks – things like system name changes, resetting passwords, or granting certain permissions to software. All of these, and more, can be automated with workflows using iPaaS with ITSM.
By combining iPaaS (integration platform as a service) with ITSM and PPM on a single platform you can automate both complex and simple tasks, as well as connect disparate systems throughout your organization.
If you chose a codeless platform for this, you get the added benefit of anyone being able to use these tools – not just IT. By allowing lines of business to create their own workflows you can free up your IT resources to work on larger projects and eliminate the logjam when it comes to integrations within your organization.