Introducing ITSM 2.0: A Cornerstone for Digital and IT Transformation
October 20, 2016

Dennis Drogseth
EMA

Share this

Over the course of numerous deployment dialogs and multiple research projects starting with last year’s work on ITSM futures, I have been tracking a still largely unheralded phenomenon: ITSM teams in many organizations are evolving to take a leadership role in helping all of IT become more efficient, more business aligned, and ever more relevant to business outcomes. Indeed, an ITSM 2.0 is emerging that’s radically different from its inherited, reactive past in ways that are sometimes predictable but more often surprising.

ITSM 1.0

OK, let’s start with what still seems to be the industry’s most common caricature of the “reactive service desk.” ITSM is potentially a great deal more than this, but frayed nerves on both sides of the IT/service-consumer divide have hardened suspicions, frustrations, and hands-up-in-the-air impatience levels with service desk operations.

When we first looked at progressive versus reactive ITSM in our ITSM futures research, we saw that those ITSM teams that were struggling the most had a number of predictable characteristics. These included:

■ Failure of credibility in supporting business requirements, which was directly correlated with being outsourced, as well as with losing staffing and other resources to Operations.

■ Inability to grapple with emerging (and in some cases, already well-established) requirements in adapting to cloud, agile process requirements, mobile, and endpoint awareness overall.

■ Failure to invest in more strategic and potentially transformative technologies ranging from classic ITSM investments, such as configuration management databases (CMDBs) and service catalogs, to broader shared investments, such as analytics, application discovery and dependency mapping (ADDM), and more advanced levels of automation for diagnostics and managing change.

■ Similar failure to invest in best practices, including, but in no way limited to, the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL).

ITSM 2.0

The first thing to do here is take the ITSM 1.0 list and turn it on its head. We see then that, just for starters, ITSM 2.0 is:

■ More effective in supporting business requirements, and hence more likely to experience greater investment in terms of staffing and other resources.

■ More likely to play a role in shaping and optimizing IT operations efficiencies by helping to promote far more effective cross-silo (network/systems/applications) interaction and dialog.

■ Far more likely to participate in cloud, mobile, and even agile/DevOps initiatives.

■ Far more invested in strategic technologies ranging from CMDBs, service catalogs, and automation to even more advanced and shared levels of analytics, with often dramatic improvements in endpoint optimization for mobile and non-mobile devices, including lifecycle management and more effective customer/consumer experience.

■ Far more likely to address security requirements ranging from proactive support for incident and problem management (often through integrated technologies shared with operations), to endpoint compliance in patch and configuration management, to change management more broadly across the infrastructure.

■ Far more likely to play a role in promoting process efficiencies with best practices across all of IT.

In addition to this, ITSM 2.0 is beginning to take a growing role in supporting enterprise process efficiencies (for facilities, HR, etc.), as well as both Green IT and its successor, the Internet of Things (IoT).

Two Key ITSM 2.0 Differentiators: Integrated IT Operations and Endpoint Optimization

While each of these areas of differentiation deserves a more extensive discussion, in this blog I’d like to highlight two: integrated IT operations and endpoint optimization.

Integrated IT Operations

Bringing IT operations together with ITSM is one of the most poorly documented and yet most critical areas of advancement in the industry.

Here are some of the attributes of integrated IT operations that stand out in ongoing research and dialogs:

■ Sharing data for a far more integrated approach to availability and performance management, as combined with incident and problem management – This data can include event and time-series data, more advanced analytics including support for security, service modeling (CMDB, ADDM), shared knowledgebase access, and a growing role for social media and business data. Common mobile access can make this sharing of information even more compelling.

■ Sharing data for change management, and even agile or DevOps needs – This often requires increased insight into service modeling and automation in particular.

■ Improved workflow automation across IT operations and ITSM teams – As I mentioned, in many conversations I’m finding that it’s ITSM that is becoming the creative force in breaking through operations silos.

■ Project management governance.

■ Documented OpEx efficiencies to help IT operations and ITSM continue to improve in how they work, both collectively and individually.

■ Far more effective user experience management that places all the resources of ITSM teams and IT operations together on a common footing.

Endpoint Optimization

EMA is just concluding research on “Optimizing IT for Financial Performance.” And in that research ITSM once again plays a central role. Given the ascendant requirements to support mobile stakeholders, optimizing endpoints in terms of cost and value is a leading feature of ITSM 2.0. The top prioritized functional areas were the following:

■ Security

■ Software usage

■ License management

■ Software distribution

■ Power management

■ Hardware lifecycle management

■ Endpoint hardware usage

Endpoint optimization can also be greatly enhanced through service catalogs and app stores that integrate cost, SLAs, and usage insights into how end consumers access IT services.

In Conclusion

By implication at least, I hope you can see why I view ITSM 2.0 as a cornerstone of both IT and digital transformation, as it can be a unifier for IT, as well as for IT-to-business efficiencies and relevance. This unification stretches across process, data, technology, and dialog, with ITSM teams often forming a hub for all of these factors to come together.

But this isn’t actually the end of my discussion on ITSM 2.0. I’ll be following up with one more blog: ITSM 2.0 challenges. So stay tuned for more.

Dennis Drogseth is VP at Enterprise Management Associates (EMA).

Share this

The Latest

January 20, 2017

Traditionally, Application Performance Management (APM) is usually associated with solutions that instrument application code. There are two fundamental limitations with such associations. If instrumenting the code is what APM is all about, then APM is applicable only to homegrown applications for which access to code is available ...

January 19, 2017

The correlation between mobile app crashes and increasing churn rates (or declining user retention) has long been suspected. In the report, titled Crash and Churn, Apteligent set out to understand the impact of per user crash rate on churn ...

January 18, 2017

In Fall 2016, Paessler AG surveyed 650 system administrators from 49 countries to get a "state of the SysAdmin" and find out how their jobs are changing, how they spend their time, and what their priorities are. The survey responses led to some interesting findings – namely, that when it comes to today's SysAdmins, things are not as they seem. Here are some of the key findings that illustrate the gap between perception and reality ...

January 17, 2017

Choosing an application performance monitoring (APM) solution can be a daunting task. A quick Google search will show popular products, but there's also a long list of less-well-known open source products available, too. So how do you choose the right solution? ...

January 13, 2017

Digital transformation is a key initiative for enterprises that want to reach new customers and offer greater value via technology. Changing user expectations, new modes of engagement and the need to improve responsiveness are the main factors driving companies to update outdated processes and develop new applications as part of a digital transformation strategy. But in order to deliver on the promise of digital transformation, organizations must also modernize their IT infrastructure to support speed, scale and change ...

January 12, 2017

Digital transformation is evolving the enterprise to one in which high performance applications are now the norm as organizations use video, graphics and other information intensive multimedia to populate these new channels of engagement. Digital technologies, and high performance applications, create further pressure on IT staffs which are grappling with PCs that are past their optimum performance. As a result, IT is looking at alternatives to swapping out PCs and investing in more costly equipment that will inevitably have an expiration date. One solution is to build on virtualization solutions that incorporate high-performance thin clients ...

January 11, 2017

If your business depends on mission-critical web or legacy applications, then monitoring how your end users interact with your applications is critical. Most monitoring solutions try to infer the end-user experience based on resource utilization. However, resource utilization cannot provide meaningful results on how the end-user is experiencing an interaction with an application. The true measurement of end-user experience is availability and response time of the application, end-to-end and hop-by-hop ...

January 10, 2017

There's nothing like a major web outage to remind us how much our applications rely on other web services and technologies to function. In late October of last year, a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on Dyn, one of the largest Domain Name Service (DNS) providers on the internet, disrupted service for consumer and business applications across the web. This attack shed light on the delicate interdependent nature of the web as productivity and uptime across the world was effected ...

January 09, 2017

As an IT professional, I'm used to words that mean different things to different people. For example, "log monitoring" could mean anything from simple text files to logfile aggregation systems. "Uptime" is also notoriously hard to nail down. Heck, even the word "monitoring" itself can be obscure. This is why I'm not surprised that application performance monitoring (APM) can mean so many different things depending on the context ...

January 06, 2017

Big data continues to be the fastest-growing segment of the information management software market. New findings released by Ovum estimate that the big data market will grow from $1.7bn in 2016 to $9.4bn by 2020, comprising 10% of the overall market for information management tooling ...