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Disgruntled IT pros are blowing the whistle on companies with out-of-compliance licenses screamed a headline recently on Networkworld.  And while we will not go into the subject of employee job satisfaction, The ITSMguy does look and discuss the area of Software Asset Management (SAM) and how firms are handling this area.

 

From discovery to the management reports you need, what is your current state?  When was the last time you conducted a software audit?  Do you know all the types of software you have purchased as a company, by your employees or that they may have downloaded “free” on their own?


You may be at risk and not even know it.  And even if you have a completely satisfied workforce, you may not have addressed the root cause issue (yes a problem management plug here) with your company still at risk from a general audit from a vendor.


With April 15th approaching, is it a tax audit you should be worried about or the costs and potential penalties of a software audit?  Is shelfware building up like dust on your VHS tape collection or are you living on the edge with more copies deployed that you can account for?

 

Article:  In a tough economy, disgruntled or fired employees are reporting their companies' questionable software licensing practices and exposing a culture of widespread software piracy.

 

Rampant software piracy by IT professionals was clear in a survey of 200 IT professionals on IT Ethics conducted by Network World. While 89% of respondents said it was unethical for an IT employee to make the company fall out of compliance with software license agreements, 70% said they have directly witnessed other IT folks knowingly violating software licenses.

 

One survey respondent told Network World that IT professionals are often ordered to violate software agreements by managers on the business side of the house. Additionally, 69% of respondents said they've directly witnessed their IT professional peers looking the other way when employees use the network to illegally install unlicensed software or share DRM-protected files.

 

The Software and Information Industry Association (SIIA) confirms that its caseload of corporate piracy is on the rise. The SIIA says that frustrated IT professionals are increasingly fingering their employers for failing to buy enough copies of the software used on the job.

 

The SIIA, which litigates software piracy cases, says the number of reports it received about corporations violating their software licensing agreements increased during the second half of 2010. SIIA is now investigating more than 40 complaints per month, up from 30 a year ago.

 

SIAA gives out anti-piracy rewards to whistleblowers -- $127,000 to 24 sources in 2009 and $57,700 to 16 sources in 2010 -- who report incidents of corporate end-user software and content piracy that are later verified.

 

"The reason people report to us is because they are disgruntled," says Keith Kupferschmid, senior vice president of intellectual property at SIIA. "They may have been fired. They may have not gotten the bonus or raise that they wanted. They end up getting angry and reporting to us."

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Effective financial management will help you more accurately quantify the value of the services you are providing to the business as well as the value of the assets used to provide those services.  If you are not responsible for financial management in your organization, many of these concepts may not be relevant to you; however, everyone in IT should have an understanding of the following key concepts;focus 5.jpg

 

Service Valuation; is the assessment of the service in financial terms and is mutually agreed upon by the provider of the service and the customer

 

Business Impact Analysis; helps you assess value as well as how much you should be willing to expend to provide and maintain the continuity of a particular service

 

Return on investment; We all know this one or as we adjust in a SaaS world, Return on Deployment

 

Service Portfolio Management; is a means by which you can dynamically and transparently govern resource investment

 

Demand Management; assists in avoiding both excess capacity as well as not enough capacity

 

The Business provides funding to IT so that IT can support critical business activities. Financial management and service economics is all about being a good steward of the money that the business entrusts to your. Ask yourself: Am I truly using this money in the best possible way to deliver the services the business wants? Ultimately you need to understand the economics of your IT business so that you can ensure you are being a good steward.

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The ITSMguy came across this great blog entry by Forrester Analyst Evelyn Hubbert on Improving your ITSM operation, and wanted to share it along with some additional insight

 

  • Blend ITIL with other frameworks or best practices………… The ITSMguy;  if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.  Six Sigma has deeps roots in first understanding the metrics and how those are tied to actual dollars. From there starts the improvement process and measure, measure, measure. 

 

  • Start with low-hanging fruit…………The ITSMguyas you all have read before, getting those basic things like a Service Request portal in place for basic call deflection yields great results

 

  • Consolidate and trim management tools……. The ITSMguy; moving from a series of point solutions to an integrated platform allows you savings not only on the cost of software, but the hidden costs of supporting multiple solutions, support for integrations between all the systems, etc.  This is also the first step in getting a consolidated view across your IT service support operation.

 

BMC also had the pleasure of hosting a recent webinar Evelyn Hubbert discusses the future of ITSM( as recently noted); IT Service Management: Reality, Practicality and Evolution.  In IT Service Management, progress is usually driven by changes in technology, however, expectations, business requirements and economics now play a greater role as organizations truly assess where they want to be and what they want to accomplish in the future.

 

IT Service Management is morphing into a new age of both function and purpose and organizations need to know what the key driving factors are as well as what are the most impactful capabilities that the business will demand.

 

If you missed the previous post on this event,  she provides insights into The IT Service Management 2.0 Evolution with practical and measurable expectations, and discusses these issues with Sharp Healthcare to help you establish your business-centered IT Service Management strategy for 2011 and beyond.  Register for this recent webinar here

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Automated self-service can empower your users to solve many of their IT issues themselves, often with greater speed and accuracy than they would experience through a live help desk. That can make a big difference in lowering IT staff costs, as well as increase customer satisfaction.

 

When was the last time you walked into a bank? Chances are, it has been awhile. In fact, for many of us, banking takes place entirely online. We log on to check our statements, pay our bills, and transfer money. Our “main branch” is now our laptop, desktop, BlackBerry, or iPhone. The process is so well automated that we rarely need to interact with a human being. It’s quick. It’s easy. And it’s efficient and economical. Banking could be the poster child of self-service.

 

Assuring that a transition to self-service runs smoothly and efficiently requires careful planning and a cultural shift. But the payoff in customer satisfaction and reduced costs is well worth the effort.

 

As you implement self-service automation, follow these five steps to self-service success;

Step 1: Strategy

Step 2: Planning

Step 3: Communication

Step 4: Implementation

Step 5: Continual Service Improvement

 

Read the rest.

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We have moved from the extended enterprise, to the mobile enterprise, the agile enterprise, the virtual enterprise and now to the social enterprise.  What’s next? 

 

The ITSMguy takes a look at some possibilities.

 

The transparent enterprise; nah, already been  done. With more and more IT departments embracing IT Service costing and aligning their priorities to the business. This one is covered.

 

The Velvet Enterprise; OK, off the wall and sounds too “warm and fuzzy”, but would make a great name for a band. But with the Velvet Underground and Velvet Revolver already out there, probably a bit too crowded for The ITSMguy.


With the Green Bay Packers and Steelers playing in this year’s big game(can’t use that SB word without having to pay a license fee), The ITSMguy  thinks we need to make sure we don’t forgot the basic blocking and tackling of ITSM.  How are you doing in your service desk operation?  How many calls are you still handling via phone or even email?  Have you implemented a Service Request portal?  Are you tracking your incidents and have a problem management practice in place? lombardi.jpg

 

You hear us talk a lot about Service Desk Optimization and that is for a good reason. Every day we talk with customers who have not yet modernized their service desk and taken advantage of the full power available as well as the rest of the ITSM solution suite.

 

So the question for the day is; Where are you REALLY at in your service desk modernization plans?

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Many IT organizations are struggling to cope with the ever-growing complexity of the IT infrastructure in today’s data centers. They must also balance the need to respond to pressure for delivering IT services faster and more cost effectively than ever before. As a result of these economic and staffing pressures, many organizations are seeking alternate service delivery and enterprise management approaches, such as cloud computing.

 

Today we talk with Kia Behnia, BMC CTO, about moving to cloud computing, the model for convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources.

 

These computing resources could be base, compute, network storage or they could be higher level services,  such as applications or platforms. Many of these resources have to be dynamically scalable so that you can add or remove capacity as needed, and they are typically delivered in a highly automated fashion. Kia’s insights—many of which are gained from spending 60 to 70% of his time in the field meeting with CIOs on all five continents—will add to your understanding of cloud computing in the enterprise. Kia is Senior Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, at BMC software.

 

ITSMguy; This is also important for ITSM practitioners for its impact on the areas of Service Request, Service Catalog and Service Asset.  "One of the benefits of the cloud is that you can pay by the drink, but then you have to contemplate asset management and license management,"

Want to learn more, access this white paper by Kia:  Next Generation Service Delivery: Fast Forward to Enterprise Cloud Computing.

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With all the new gadgets, widgets, apps and devices, The ITSMguy sometimes has trouble keeping up and feels alot like this guymediviel help desk.png

.

 

Enjoy the weekend and try to unplug for at least a few minutes.

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ITSMguy; this is a great opportunity to hear from one of the IT  Service Management leading analysts and real world insight and learnings  from Sharp Healthcare.  This recorded webinar will only be available  for a short time longer so don’t delay!


 

In IT Service Management, progress is usually driven by changes in technology, however, expectations, business requirements and economics now play a greater role as organizations truly assess where they want to be and what they want to accomplish in the future.

 

IT Service Management is morphing into a new age of both function and purpose and organizations need to know what the key driving factors are as well as what are the most impactful capabilities that the business will demand.

 

To help you prepare for the “next era of ITSM,” please join featured speaker Eveline Oehrlich, Senior Analyst, Infrastructure & Operations of Forrester Research, Inc., as she provides insights into The IT Service Management 2.0 Evolution with practical and measurable expectations, and discusses these issues with Sharp Healthcare to help you establish your business-centered IT Service Management strategy for 2011 and beyond.

 


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The challenges IT departments face today are many — from providing system uptime in line with ever-increasing expectations, to lowering costs while maintaining high service quality, to shifting from a pure operations mode to one of driving innovation and creating new services.  IT is being asked to not only do more with less, it is being asked to deliver it more quickly, cost-effectively, and accurately— and to a broader audience.evolution.jpg

 

During the recent economic downturn, IT budgets experienced a 20 percent or more reduction, removing most, if not all, of the 30 percent of budget devoted to “innovation”.  Not surprisingly, this has caused IT departments to scale back new services and instead focus on “just keeping the lights on”.

 

Today, IT departments are faced with a new set of requirements from the business — everything from rolling out new web-based services, to supporting a whole host of new types of mobile devices, to acquiring new companies or expanding again into new markets. 

 

Some of the key challenges for today’s IT organization include:

  • Managing Costs
    • How do you get the most out of every asset, project, person, and activity?
  • Improve Service Performance
    • How do you meet the expectations of your organization?
  • Increase Transparency
    • How do you provide the business with visibility into the cost of IT?
  • Add Business Value
    • How do you ensure IT activities and decisions support business priorities?
  • Enable Compliance Controls
    • How do you reduce risk and enforce standards required by internal/ external policies and mandates?

 

How your IT organization responds to these challenges not only can affect the levels of service provided by your organization, but also can significantly affect your company’s bottom line. 

 

The service desk is the face of IT to your consumers, and as such, is essential to keeping your business running smoothly.  With much of the headcount in IT dedicated to supporting the service desk, the ability to improve, streamline, and automate core service desk processes is essential to freeing up experienced and skilled talent and allowing them to take on more strategic projects that deliver new capabilities and services requested by the business.  In addition, service desk efficiency allows you not only to maintain a competitive edge, but also differentiate and create new revenue.

 

However, there is more to IT service management effectiveness than the service desk alone.  Therefore, in view of today’s highly complex and changing IT infrastructures, you not only must effectively streamline your service desk processes, but you must also reduce and eliminate the risk inherited in piece-meal or unproven service support solutions.

 

IT organizations that are achieving process efficiency, effectively managing costs, achieving compliance, and delivering superior service quality understand the value of an integrated IT service management platform and a forward-looking IT service management strategy.  Replacing disjointed activities for incident, problem, change, release, and asset management with a unified service support strategy is the key to providing truly business-aligned services.

Simply stated, IT service management is the core area of functionality for how organizations request and support IT services — and how these services are delivered to the customer.

 

A comprehensive IT service management platform allows you to handle service support issues today, while growing and adding additional capabilities in the future. Read more

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By Thomas H. Davenport; as seen on the McKinsey Quarterly

 

Knowledge workers’ information needs vary. The key to better productivity is applying technology more precisely.


ITSMguy; Excellent article in this month’s McKinsey Quarterly on the importance and integration of knowledge management into the enterprise.  From recording best practices to making self help information available from a self service or service request portal, knowledge is truly “a terrible thing to waste”.  Learn more about our knowledge management solutions and enjoy the article.

 

In the half-century since Peter Drucker coined the term “knowledge workers,” their share of the workforce has steadily grown—and so has the range of technology tools aimed at boosting their productivity. Yet there’s little evidence that massive spending on personal computing, productivity software, knowledge-management systems, and much else has moved the needle. What’s more, a wide variety of recent research has begun suggesting that always-on, multitasking work environments are so distracting that they are sapping productivity.

 

After researching the productivity of knowledge workers for years, I’ve concluded that organizations need a radically different approach. Yes, technology is a vital enabler of communication, of collaboration, and of access to rising volumes of information. But least-common-denominator approaches involving more technology for all have reached a point of diminishing returns. It’s time for companies to develop a strategy for knowledge work—one that not only provides a clearer view of the types of information that workers need to do their jobs but also recognizes that the application of technology across the organization must vary considerably, according to the tasks different knowledge workers perform.

 

Few executives realize that there are two divergent paths for improving access to the information that lies at the core of knowledge work. The most common approach, giving knowledge workers free access to a wide variety of tools and information resources, presumes that these employees will determine their own work processes and needs. The other, the structured provision of information and knowledge, involves delivering them to employees within a well-defined context of tasks and deliverables. Computers send batches of work to employees and provide the information needed to do it.

Both the free-access and structured-provisioning approaches are in wide use, but they make radically different assumptions about how knowledge work should be performed and its productivity improved. Executives who aren’t conscious of the trade-offs they are making between them and thus don’t look for opportunities to harness the power of structure probably won’t get the most from knowledge workers.

 

Equally important, leaders must pursue IT and productivity opportunities at the right level of granularity. While it might be tempting to think that a given approach will work well for an entire organization, reality is rarely so tidy. In my experience, the unit of analysis should be particular jobs and roles—or at least distinct categories of jobs and roles. To move the needle in a specific business unit or function, it’s not enough to launch a set of company-wide initiatives or to count on a piece of software. Instead, leaders of knowledge workers should understand the key differences among them and tailor solutions to these peculiarities. Read the rest of the article.

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In early 2010, Apple announced the upcoming release of its iPad with much fanfare.

 

For the next two months, key influencers were given access to try out the iPad so they could help spread the word about its features and functionality. Press coverage and blogging about the iPad were prolific. By the time of the iPad’s actual launch, people were standing in line overnight to be among the first to have one of their own.

 

Wouldn’t it be great if users were standing in line to try the new solution that you are rolling out? Or, at the very least, wouldn’t you like to have users become excited about the new solution, rather than resistant to it? You can get end users to embrace new technology with enthusiasm, but you have to plan for it.

 

This means that you must go beyond the goal of simply getting the solution deployed within the established timeline and budget. In addition to the actual implementation, it’s important to carefully orchestrate demand for the solution.

 

Here are a few key steps to help you get there:

  • Marketing Matters
  • Build a Communications Plan
  • Paint the Big Picture
  • Be Informative and Personal
  • Gain Executive Commitment
  • Enlist “Change Champions”
  • Identify and Counter Objections

 

Join us today as we talk with Terry Vyas is director of educational services for BMC Software and is responsible for worldwide sales, delivery, and offerings development for BMC Global Services’ education practice and learn more about this and discuss the following;

 

 

  • How  Apple created a demand for the iPad even before it was released to the public. Do you really think it’s possible for ordinary IT groups to create demand for business solutions?
  • Why should Enterprise IT care about a communication plan?
  • What are some of the key things IT should be communicating to its customers before releasing a new solution?
  • What are other keys for success?
  • But even if the execs are behind us, people resist change. How do we work around that?
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By Dan Turchin, chief executive officer and co-founder of Aeroprise. Follow Dan on Twitter.

 

 

"Struggling predator Microsoft corners wounded prey in too-little-too-late bid to salvage futile mobile strategy." Headline describing last week's Elop-Ballmer Nokia-Windows Phone 7 announcement? Or 2006 headline describing the Palm-Microsoft tryst? The parallels are eerie. The result will be the same. Palm was mortally wounded then and Nokia is now. Both had nothing to lose and everything to gain by tying up with Microsoft. And as in 2006, knight-in-shinipredator-prey.jpgng-armor Microsoft is well-equipped to fight the last battle (with an excellent platform now and market share in 2006) but ill-equipped to win the only war that matters today: for developer mindshare.

 

As Chris O'Brien (@scjobrien) points out in today's Mercury News: "...it's no longer enough to make gorgeous phones. The real challenge is persuading thousands of developers to write the apps that define today's mobile experience." It's bigger than that: computing as we know it has changed forever. All software, particularly business applications, must first work well on smartphones and tablets. What doesn't work well on mobile devices should be developed later (the operative term!) for PCs. From now on, to win in the enterprise vendors must win pocketspace. End of story.

 

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop's widely-circulated "burning platform" private (hah!), internal (hah hah!) memo said it all: "Our competitors aren't taking our market share with devices; they are taking our market share with an entire ecosystem. Our platform [an effective double meaning, read the full memo] is burning."

 

Nokia, kudos for doing something. Microsoft, kudos for persevering. Both of you, define the next battlefield instead of fighting the last war or brace for failure.

 

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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The ITSMguy came across this ditty yesterday and thought it would be the perfect end to the week.

 

ferris.jpg.pngAn internet sleuth has pieced together the coordinates of the actual game in which Ferris Bueller, Sloane Petterson and pal Cameron Frye attended.  This has kept me up many nights wondering and now I will spend the weekend pondering;

 

Did Ferris and Sloane actually get married and what is he doing today?  The ITSMguy’s bet is that Ferris finagled his way into some ivy league school and is partly to blame for the whole financial meltdown.

 

What become of Cameron?  Or Ed Rooney?

 

We now know that Charlie Sheen was not stretching himself too much in his role and only a preview of his current TV character.

 

And for any of you hard core fans, the actual house of Cameron Frye can be yours for a cool $1.6M.

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ITI discusses at length the four “Ps” of strategy- perspective, position, plan and pattern, each of which represents a different way to approach your service strategy.  Brief summaries are provided here and refer to Chapter 3 of the service strategy book for more details.

 

- Perspective is your vision and direction for the services you will provide, and is attained through conversations with your stakeholders.

 

- Position is how you will differentiate from your competitors; that is, what is your unique value proposition?  As sound position guides you in both what to do and what not to do based on your ability to differentiate yourself from the competition.

 

- Plan describes how you will achieve the established goals and objectives. It focuses on financial budgets, your portfolio of services, new service development, investments in service assets and improvement plans.

 

- Pattern represents consistent decisions and actions over time; that is, the organizations fundamental way of doing things. It is embedded in the way you do business. Management systems, organization, policies, processes, schedules and budgets all have discernable patterns. Patterns can be a source of competitive advantage.

 

The 4 Ps in Action. A well-known computer company’s perspective is building to customer specifications quickly and inexpensively. Its position is variety-based, initially delivering only laptops and desktops, with a wide variety of potential configurations. Key to the company’s plan(initially) is to take orders only via the Web and phone.  And the pattern is a high level of customer service and competitive pricing.

 

Clear principles and guidelines, communicated through a well-define vision and mission statement, provide both the business and IT with a common goal.  Keep a single minded focus on the customer perspective and the business outcomes that the customer desires, and adopt a continual service improvement approach so that you are constantly enhancing and differentiating the services you provide.

 

To get started on your ITIL journey visit our ITIL resource center and to get this complete ebook click here; http://bit.ly/hS5HuF  or a pocket version.

gerald_hoagland

ITSM Out of the Box

Posted by gerald_hoagland Feb 10, 2011
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This article is from Martijn Adams at the BMC Partner- Infravision.  Infravision, based in the Netherlands, has established themselves as leaders in implementing and providing consultation for the Alignability Process Model related to Service Desk Express.  For more information, just look at the Alignability website - www.alignabiity.com

 

 

 

ITSM out of the box: 50th Alignability Process Model (APM) implementation in Benelux completed!

InfraVision / BMC Software complete 50th Alignability Process Model (APM) implementation in the Benelux. APM was first developed in 1998 and has since then be improved based on the experience and feedback from over 300 implementations worldwide!
The out of the box service management approach has since then been copied by a number of other vendors but none have yet gained the tremendous amount of experience included in APM. The APM model is providing an integrated set of processes, procedures and work instructions and related material like templates, role descriptions, KPI's, etc. etc. All this material is based on actual real life experiences in implementing ITSM in over 300 organisations worldwide differntiating the product from many others that are based on books or theoretical knowledge of the vendor.

 

__________________________

 

Many organisations have failed in implementing (ITIL) processes in their IT department while having spent considerable amounts of money in achieving this. Integration and alignment between processes is often weak as they are designed separately from one another and sometimes by different groups. Many organisations still try to design their own ITSM (ITIL) processes and are thus reinventing the wheel because they do not have access to proven, real life experiences from other organisations that have successfully implemented ITIL processes.

 

In reality ITSM processes are largely similar for most organisations and having access to proven processes actually being used by organisations will speed up the implementation and deliver value much faster. In a few months you will have a proven set of ITIL processes implemented, integrated and supported and you will be able to reap the benefits from this and spent your time improving the output of the processes instead of spending time on getting the processes right.

 

The Alignability Process Model (APM) was created in 1998 by Service Management Partners and has ever since been refined and improved with the feedback and experiences from over 300 organisations worldwide. It describes 11 ITIL processes from process level to procedure and work instruction level including role descriptions, templates, KPI descriptions, etc. It comes with 2 implementation approaches; one where the process model is accepted as it is and one where the processes and procedures are first reviewed by the organisation to check if changes are required to meet specific business requirements.
Implementation of the model as described in the implementation approaches can be done in 6 to 12 weeks.
It is possible to purchase the Alignability Process Model together with pre-configured BMC ITSM tools (existing customers also have HP OpenView and System Center solutions to support the model).

 

In a short time you will have the ITIL processes you require implemented on a high quality level, without having to spent large amounts of time and money on defining those processes to a detailed (procedure and work instruction) level. At the same time you will benefit from the ongoing experience of hundreds of other organisations and their ITSM staff ensuring the value of the instrument.

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“CIOs expect to adopt new cloud services much faster than originally expected. Currently, 3 percent of CIOs have the majority of IT running in the cloud or on SaaS technologies, but over the next four years CIOs expect this number to increase to 43 percent”, Gartner recently reported with the results of it’s 2011 CIO Agenda Survey

 

In a further positive development revealed in the survey, CIOs may be able to reallocate IT budget savings, rather than simply returning them to the organization in 2011. CIOs anticipate the ability to fund infrastructure changes and new projects by reallocating resources within that budget. This approach to funding will become a standard operating procedure since Gartner does not see CIO IT budgets recovering to their 2008 peak until 2014.

 

The statement that jumped out to The ITSMguy was,  “CIOs must re-imagine IT to support growth and competitive advantage.”


So the question of the day is; What are you doing different in 2011 to ignite growth? 

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How many times have you turned down requests to provide end users with additional capabilities from a product, either because you were too busy, the level of effort seemed too difficult, or you just didn’t know where to begin? What about some of those annoying challenges that you didn’t tackle because they weren’t high enough on your priority list?

 

Consider this: What if you or your staff could understand your products much better and use them in ways you hadn’t even imagined, all while saving months of development time? Think about the value IT could provide to your company and your team if these capabilities were offered by your organization.

 

The good news is that your IT staff can achieve productivity increases they’ve never previously envisioned, learn how to take effective shortcuts they didn’t realize existed, and take on new challenges well beyond their imagination. They can become better skilled and more versatile to meet the challenges of delivering IT services in a very dynamic, complex environment.

 

How?

 

By becoming certified in the technology they use. In fact, many BMC customers who have become certified in various products have discovered how this knowledge has helped them to get substantial value out of their investments and effectively address issues they never would have considered before receiving training. They are also considerably more likely to be able to solve more problems on their own.

 

Here are four ways certification can help your organization make a difference;

 

  • Establishes a center of operational excellence based on best practices
  • Helps provide a more holistic approach to I.T. service management
  • Reduces development time and allows you to focus on solving problems you ma y not have considered tackling before
  • Expands the skill set of your staff

 

 

Learn more

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By Kevin Casey as seen on InformationWeek

 


The ITSMguy question for the day is; How are you managing these assets?  And what process are you using to handle the influx of new requests for training, support, issues, etc.  Are you able to track and identify where the trends are and associate to a particular device or app?


 

Make sure you have a quality IT Asset Management and Service Request Management(with Knowledge)solutions in place so like Buffalo in February, you don’t get buried.  Also make sure you check out our ITSM solutions for mid sized enterprises; Service Desk Express and BMC Remedyforce Service Desk.


 

Double-digit growth of global PC sales to smaller firms fueled by emerging regions, according to Techaisle research, while U.S. and other mature markets saw relatively modest growth due to recession hangover.

 

Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) took delivery of 120.1 million PCs worldwide in 2010, a 10.4% increase from the previous year, according to research firm Techaisle.

small business.jpg

 

Much of that growth was driven by emerging markets, where PC purchases by smaller firms increased at a 16.5% clip. Mature markets, including the U.S., grew at a slower overall rate of 4.4%. Techaisle attributed that largely to continued economic uncertainty and lack of hiring in the U.S. and similar regions. Total units purchased by SMBs in emerging markets surpassed that of mature markets last year for the first time ever, according to the report.

The desktop remains king -- for now, at least -- among SMBs, accounting for more than half of all PCs shipped last year, or 61.3 million units.

 

Manufacturers such as HP and Dell unveiled new desktop models geared for the SMB segment at the beginning of 2011.

 

Smaller companies bought 54.3 million notebooks, representing 45% of total sales. Techaisle projected that notebooks will outsell desktops in the SMB market in 2011. Netbooks pulled up in a distant third place, with 4.5 million shipped.

 

Techaisle did not include tablets such as Apple's iPad in its report. A recent Goldman Sachs analysis projected tablets will eventually replace one in three PCs in the broader market.


The Asia/Pacific region was tops in terms of SMB market share, accounting for 32% of PCs purchased last year. The region also showed the highest rate of growth, with a 17.6% increase in sales compared with 2009. Middle East & Africa, one of the smallest regions in terms of share, saw significant year-over-year growth at 15.2%, as did Eastern Europe (13.7%) and Latin America (12.2%).

 

Western Europe (20%) and North America (19.1%) ranked second and third in terms of SMB market share, though both experienced relatively modest growth at 3.3% and 4.8% respectively.

 

The report also noted a shift in buying habits in mature markets, with more SMBs purchasing retail or online instead of going through VAR or reseller channels than in the past. Nearly one in three PCs purchased last year by smaller businesses in the U.S., for example, came from retail stores.

 

Techaisle defined the SMB segment as businesses with 1,000 or fewer employees.

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We have been talking a lot about ITSM and the cloud here at ITSMtoday and in this episode we hear from one of BMC’s thought leaders in the area of cloud computing, Lilac Schoenbeck and how getting the basic building blocks in place is crucial to cloud success.

 

cloud computing_4.jpg

There are a few critical components to a cloud—and they work together. You start with a user, who innocuously asks for a service. But there are many considerations when planning for a successful cloud deployment: service catalogs, service requests, service automation, resources, templates, applications, data, performance, capacity, decommissioning among them.

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BMC CEO Bob Beauchamp appeared on CNBC to discuss the recent Q3 earnings and the overall company results and strategy.  Cloud continues to gain momentum and several more ITSM wins reported with The United Nations Federal Credit Union, Sharp Healthcare, CenITex(Victorian Government’s IT ) and  University of Arizona.

Bob on CNBC.png

 

This part quarter also saw the announcement of the expanded relationship with Salesforce.com with the Remedyforce Cloud and the BMC Remedyforce Service desk, a complete SaaS based service management solution. 

 

Well after a quick pause and a run in the snow, the The ITSMguy is back to the salt mines( actually now the mines in Cloud City) and back to work, we’re not resting on our laurels. If you have not had a chance to preview the latest from our ITSM solutions, visit us and give us a call.

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Chapter Three of the Service Strategy book builds upon some of the definitions introduced in Chapter 2 and introduces key concepts that are essential to service management success. Significant points stressed in his chapter are value creation, the importance of understanding the customer’s perspective and the need to focus on business outcomes.

focus III.jpg

 

If you don’t focus on the business outcomes, then you won’t have a business, at least not for very long. If you aren’t looking at what matters from the customer’s perspective, then you can’t operate effectively. In creating your service strategy, consider the context of the customers, how they use the services, and how they perceive the value of your services.

 

This chapter also provides further guidance on warranty of service, which you can communicate to customers in terms of commitments to availability, capacity, continuity and security of the utilization of services.

 

  • Availability means that the customer can use your service under the terms and conditions you have mutually agreed upon

 

  • Capacity ensures that the customer will be able to utilize the service at a specified level of business activity or that demand will be fulfilled at a specified quality level

 

  • Continuity guarantees that the customer will be able to use the service even if you experience a major failure or other unexpected event

 

  • Security means that customer’s utilization of services will be free of specific risks

 

Clear principles and guidelines, communicated through a well-defined vision and mission statement; provide both the business and IT with a common goal.  Keep a single-minded focus on the customer perspective and the business outcomes that the customer desires and adopt a continual service improvement approach so that you are constantly enhancing and differentiating the services you provide.

 

To get started on your ITIL journey visit our ITIL resource center and to get this complete ebook click here; http://bit.ly/hS5HuF  or a pocket version.

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Forbes Online sat down recently with BMC CIO Mark Settle on to discuss “How the Cloud Story Evolves in 2011”.mark settle_forbes.png

 

Are you ready to support the cloud with your ITSM solution?

 

If not take a read at of our recent whitepaper; Evolving Your IT Service Management Strategy to Address Today’s Challenges and learn how BMC has developed a framework to assist you in getting ready for a move toward the cloud with ITSM.

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By Guest Author  Ian Power, Principle Consultant,  InfraVision

 

 

Which comes first? Change or the CMDB? Do we design and populate our CMDB to support the change process or is the change process implemented to protect the integrity of the CMDB? chicken or egg.jpg


I believe it depends on who in the organization is driving the move towards Service Management and ITIL.


1) If it is driven from a higher or management level there will be a focus on integrated, comprehensive processes which provide transparency, visibility and control. As such the change process makes clear the current state, and the future direction, of your IT infrastructure. The CMDB then becomes a necessary “baseline” for the Change process. It will be designed and populated accordingly with a focus on those elements of the Infrastructure which a) are vital to providing services and b )whose costs should be monitored.


2) The need for Service Management, (operating according to the principles of ITIL) can also be driven from “the bottom up”. In this case it is the Service Desk, support groups and other stakeholders who push for Service Management as a way of managing complexity, prioritizing resource and establishing effective communication within IT and between IT and Business Management. Here the focus is on the operational issues, maintaining and restoring Services. As a result the CMDB is viewed as the starting place; a repository of information which will help resolve Support Requests. It is often based on (and/or confused with) an asset register and the focus will be on elements of the infrastructure whose failure impacts on services, rather than on the cost of the equipment. Given the subsequent importance of the CMDB in the support and delivery of Services, it becomes vital to protect the integrity of this information. This requires a Change Process, ensuring that Incidents are neither created nor made worse by unplanned changes.


This may seem like a subtle distinction and the change process and CMDB should be entirely compatible but I believe there can be issues with a Service Management implementation when there is not a consistent vision shared by all parties, or when different people view the change process and the CMDB through the lens of their own requirements.


This is one of the great advantages of the Alignability Process Model. Because it’s a complete Service management framework, designed as a piece with integrated and interdependent processes, it delivers the “command and control” required - meeting the management requirements. But with its detailed Work Instructions, automated workflow and very specific CI information it also enables the support and delivery of services to end-users on a daily basis – so the operational requirements are met. While enabling the effective use of Change and Configuration management “in the real world” it still provides the necessary checks and balances to ensure the processes are viable. For example, in APM, a Change cannot be closed without an update of the CMDB. Likewise it is strongly recommended that the Change co-ordinator and the Configuration co-ordinator are NOT the same person. In this way APM delivers the benefits of Service Management while mitigating the risks of the processes being subverted or degraded.


In conclusion, which comes first?


Ideally Change and Configuration need to be designed and implemented together, but I suggest that Configuration management should take the lead. A CMDB designed with a limited scope (to start with) allows quick and effective adoption of Change management. This allows Change to deliver value to the organisation, and perhaps as importantly be seen to deliver the benefits of Change management.

 

About InfraVision: InfraVision enables IT departments of large and mid-sized organisations, profit or non-profit, to run their IT department as a business; a business with a clear service portfolio for its customers, adding value to the core business of the organisation.

InfraVision has many years of experience with ITIL, Bisl and ASL; the reference frameworks for setting up management processes within a service organisation.  Unlike any other company, InfraVision has proved to be capable of turning the theory of ITIL into pragmatic best practice solutions for customers. www.infravision.com

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The service desk is the last place you should try to cut back.

 

For external-facing organizations, quality support keeps customer loyalty and repeat business high and ensures that partners and suppliers can do business with you cost effectively. For your IT organization, which supports internal customers, quality service drives up employee productivity by ensuring that problems are resolved, questions are answered, and requests are filled promptly. Having a solid service desk, where agents can quickly prioritize issues based on business impact, also helps you prevent or minimize outages of business-critical services and the associated lost revenues.

 

With service being as important as it is, does the idea of cutting hundreds of thousands — even millions — of dollars in spending on service desk operations seem a bit crazy? Simply slashing service budgets would, of course, be risky and ill advised. Service desk consolidation, however, is a smart move. This highly successful strategy is yielding dramatic reductions in service costs while delivering significant improvements in efficiency and service quality. Here are a few examples:

 

  • After consolidating 25 service desks into one, a global telecom company realized a 30 percent reduction in mean time to repair, a 60 percent reduction in unplanned downtime, and a $32 million savings for the organization’s IT service management consolidation efforts.
  • A billion-dollar energy supplier cut service desk costs from $89 to $57 per hour and realized an annual savings of more than $17 million.
  • A major insurer consolidated multiple service desks, facilitated the adoption of IT Infrastructure Library® (ITIL®) best practices, and saved $2.5 million.
  • A leading financial services firm retired 40 service desk tools, reduced case volumes up to 80 percent, and, in the first six months, reduced the change-to incident ratio by 10 percent.

 

 

These enterprises didn’t just blindly slash the budgets of their service desk operations. Instead, they changed their approaches in ways that enhanced efficiency and effectiveness. As a result, they cut service desk spending and increased ROI in the processes, technology, and people that enable service excellence.

 

If your enterprise has multiple service desks in different geographies using disparate, disjointed tools and supporting diverse but possibly overlapping constituencies, you may be wasting hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. Service desk consolidation is a proven strategy for eliminating that waste. Companies that consolidate realize tangible, quantifiable benefits, including lower customer service costs, enhanced service quality, and improved customer satisfaction. Clearly, these companies aren’t merely trying to barely get by on service. They recognize service desk consolidation as a smart business strategy that drives customer satisfaction up while driving costs down.

 

Read more on how service desk consolidation may be advantageous to your IT support operation.

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Several reports are out with the 2010 smartphone and mobile device shipment data and some interesting trends are appearing;

 

  • 30% of Q4 2010 activations were of Android OS devices
  • 65% of Q4 activations were of Apple iOS ( iphone/ipdad) devices

 

So the numbers confirm what several publications such as WindowsIT Pro have been reporting as well as several analysts such as Gigaom, Forrester.  Is this the end of the crackberry craze (The ITSMguy is still hooked) and what of Nokia?  Does it have an enterprise play?  If the numbers continue, I guess we will have to ditch the buttons and jump on the touch screen bandwagon.ipad.jpg

 

So the question for today is; How are you managing mobile devices in your enterprise?

 

The ITSMguy will track down some of the top minds within BMC and share some additional information on this area.

 

There is also a great whitepaper from BMC by Doug Mueller on managing mobile devices in the enterprise.

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