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IT Service Management

6 Posts authored by: Rod McLane
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Running IT for a city the size of San Antonio is no easy task.  Trying to support nearly 40 different departments with different objectives and different needs, with an aging IT infrastructure was pushing San Antonio’s IT department to the limit. 

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Realizing that something needed to be done to bring order to the chaos, the city of San Antonio turned to BMC and our Business Service Management (BSM) strategy for help. 

 

As one of the quickest growing metro areas in the US, San Antonio had some significant challenges from and IT perspective “We had a very aged infrastructure” said Hugh Miller, CTO for the City of San Antonio. “Many of the systems were not at the status of what we needed to put on top of that infrastructure.  The infrastructure was not built from a stability standpoint.”

 

So the City of San Antonio set off on a multi-year project to refresh its infrastructure and the business systems that the infrastructure supported.  During this process, Miller and his team have replaced 60-70% of the business systems, creating a framework to better support the various departments and ultimately, the citizens of San Antonio. 

 

The BSM solution from BCM was a perfect fit to help the city of San Antonio move forward with their IT framework.  BMC’s strong support for ITIL best practices was key as it provided a logical way of implementing and utilizing IT services.

 

Starting with the Service Desk, the city of San Antonio implemented BMC’s Change Management, Asset Management and Problem and Incident Management, quickly extending into the monitor and deployment areas.

 

“For me to be able to be successful, I need to know what’s happening” said Miller. “BMC gives me the ability to monitor, to show stats, to realize weather we’re in a lifecycle product change, etc, without having off-line spreadsheets and ad-hoc databases and all kinds of other stuff that doesn’t talk to each other”.

 

BMC has allowed the city of San Antonio to build out its IT infrastructure in a better, more progressive way that is aligned to the future needs of this growing city.

 

Click here to see a video of how BMC is help the City of San Antonio move forward or visit www.bmc.com for more on our BSM solutions.

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When it comes to the roles, responsibilities and challenges for IT, smaller organizations don’t necessarily have it easier.  IT departments of any size must solve problems quickly and respond to their user requests as quickly as possible.  For the small and mid size companies this can be an even bigger challenge as they are constrained in the budget and time they can spend implementing IT service Management solution to help.  This was exactly the case that Yakult , a European food and beverage manufacturing company found themselves in not too long ago and we wanted to share how BMC Remedyforce helped them streamline their IT service management at a fraction of the costs of an on premise solution.

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Yakult was reaching a critical phase with their existing premise based help desk solution from Altris.  The employees had never really embraced the Altris solution because it was complex to use and it was becoming increasing apparent that the system itself had some critical limitations that were impacting Yakult’s IT team from effectively handling issues and requests.

 

Because of budget and resource limitations, selecting a new on premise solution quickly became impractical so the team began to look to the cloud and SaaS offerings as a viable alternative.  That’s where BMC’s Remedyforce came into play.

 

“We chose BMC Remedyforce for a variety of reasons,” recalled help desk analyst Arnold Soedamah. “It is a true SaaS solution, where as TOPdesk, the other solution we considered, is a managed service offering. The BMC pricing was more favorable, it offered more functionality, and we could deploy it faster. We also felt very comfortable with the two companies behind BMC Remedyforce. We have a lot of confidence in both BMC Software and Salesforce.com.”

 

The team at Yakult compared the pricing for Remedyforce with the costs of upgrading their existing on premise solution and the decision became clear.

“Compared to the cost of upgrading, BMC Remedyforce will save us approximately 25% the first year and will cut our costs nearly in half in years two and three” said Can Ersoz, Manager of Information Systems.  “And we estimate that BMC Remedyforce will cost only about half as much as TOPdesk would cost over three years.”

 

The users are adopting BMC Remedyforce much quicker than the legacy system it replaced, and taking advantage of the self-service features which has the added benefit of reducing the burden on the help desk

 

“Since we implemented BMC Remedyforce, the number of phone calls to the help desk has dropped by about one third” Ersoz said

 

As Yakult continues down the path with Remedyforce, they plan to expand its usage beyond incident management to cover change and problem management as well.

 

Learn more about BMC Remedyforce and take it for a test drive

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For this week’s spotlight on customer success, we wanted to mix things up a bit and share a interesting article  From The Street Insider about Motorola Australia.  Motorola is improving the productivity of its service staff with BMC’s mobility solutions featuring the recently acquired Aeroprise technology.

 

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Motorola Australia managing director Gary Starr explains the decision to mobilize the company's managed services field workforce.

"Eating our own dog food," he quips.

Taking a dose of its own medicine was a key factor behind Motorola's drive to move its field-force staff away from completing onerous paperwork and logging calls while on the road. The managed services business unit provides critical communication services in a shared environment for federal and state government departments, emergency services agencies, local councils, mining and resources companies and retail organizations.
Read the article to learn more about Motorola use of BMC Mobility solutions or visit BMC’s home on the web at www.bmc.com

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When it comes to building high performance aircraft, nobody is better at it than Lockheed Martin but gearing up to build the F35, one of the most advanced modern fighters, requires more than just a history of success. To keep Lockheed Martin’s manufacturing systems running at peak performance it takes a comprehensive understanding of the hardware and applications that support them and that’s where BMC comes into play.

 

“Our intention is to ensure that our manufacturing systems meet the uptime and performance requirements of the business” said Shridhar Sreekanth, systems engineering and architecture, technical operations , enterprise business services. “To do that we need tools that can identify all the elements in our environment, including the underlying hardware, the applications, and the dependencies between applications and the infrastructure they are hosted on.  We have to have that information so that when problems occur, we can resolve them quickly and prevent outages.”

 

To help Lockheed Martin get a handle on these resources they implemented BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database and BMC Discovery and Dependency Mapping.  These tools combined with BMC Remedy IT Service Management and BMC ProactiveNet Performance Management give Lockheed Martin the ability to not only understand what exists within the IT environment, but to also monitor the various engineering and manufacturing applications and issue alerts as soon as problems are detected.

 

“BMC Atrium Discovery and Dependency Mapping have given us the ability to automatically discover all the applications that are running in our environment.  It identified which servers the applications are running on and shows us the interactions between the application and the infrastructure as well as the dependencies with respect to hardware, network components and other applications” Sreekanth said.

The team at Lockheed Martin has already used BMC to capture data on over 160 of the 1500 applications deployed, with the data on these applications being stored in the BMC Atrium CMDB, where it can be accessed by other tools.

 

The BMC discovery and BMC Atrium CMDB have set the stage for Lockheed Martin to move forward with proactive monitoring of their applications including their electronic work instruction (EWI) application which provided detail manufacturing steps to the people in the production line.  Proactively monitoring EWI is an important goal for the enterprise business services organization.

 

“An outage of an application like EWI could slow down manufacturing or even shut it down completely” Sreekanth said.  “It would cost us many thousands of dollars for every hour the application is down.”

 

Visibility into the complete IT environment is becoming increasingly important for Lockheed Martin as move forward with production of the F-35, and with the help of BMC solutions, they are one step closer to a true closed loop system where potential issues are resolved before they can shut down production.

 

“Everything ties back to the fact that the people supporting the business have to be aware of what systems are out there and what those systems are doing” Sreekanth commented “The BMC solutions are providing that awareness.  Their ease of use and rich functionality are enabling us to do a better job of meeting the demands of the business”

 

Go here to view short videos on Remedy ITSM, ADDM and ProactiveNet.

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As a market leader in the IT service Management space for more than a decade, BMC has thousands of customers that have selected our solutions to help them better manage their IT infrastructure and build the bridge between IT and the business.  In this new installment on ITSMtoday I will be covering examples on how are customers are utilizing BMC’s Remedy ITSM solutions to achieve true value realization and share their winning formula with you.

 

The first customer we wanted to highlight is Wood Group Information Solutions (WGIS), the external IT service Provider of international energy services company John Wood Group.  Established in 2009 with the charter to take over the operation and management of its IT service desk for 30 existing clients,  WGIS didn’t have an existing computing infrastructure in place which represented a challenge in proving IT Support!

 

Frederic Drouin, General Manager of WGIS, knew from the onset that his best option to provide his clients with a service management solution inside 6 months was to look to the cloud.  “I wanted the tool set to be cloud-based with pre-defined process we could leverage Drouin explained which played well into BMC’s Remedy onDemand offering.

 

The decision to use BMC Remedy OnDemand was made in August 2010 and the implementation was completed as scheduled on 31 December 2010. The first client started using the service desk on 4 January 2011. “That was our target all along,” said Drouin.

 

The cloud version of BMC Remedy integrates ITIL processes with the service desk, and incident, problem, change, release, asset, service request and service level management. It allows service desk teams to efficiently resolve business critical incidents, reduce risk and enforce service level agreements (SLAs). Since the solution is supplied as a service the user does not have to provide or maintain supporting infrastructure.

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According to Drouin the rapid deployment further validated his decision to move to the cloud, and WGIS’s costs have been significantly lower than they would have been had it been necessary to buy and maintain an in-house platform for the system. The SaaS solution also provides Drouin with the compelling ability to quickly expand thanks to the inherent elasticity of cloud solutions, allowing WGIS to wheel in more capacity when needed.

 

The BMC Remedy onDemand solution also allowed WGIS to replace the patchwork quilt of spreadsheets and open source tools that its staff had been using to manage their projects with the BMC Remedy suite, injecting more rigour into the process and improving the transparency of its internal operations.

 

“We now have much greater consistency of service, more transparent and efficient reporting and we are meeting our commercial SLAs,” Drouin said, adding that the cloud solution is routinely delivering efficiency improvements of 15-20 per cent.

 

“Hosted software is a good fit for our business model. BMC Remedy OnDemand allowed us to economically and quickly set up a service desk to meet our customers’ needs. It helps our service desk team to work efficiently and has played a part in meeting our service level agreements,” Drouin said.

 

A clear measure of success is the fact that WGIS was able to extend its service desk offering to an additional three clients in its first three months of operations. 

 

To take your own test drive of Remedy OnDemand by signing  up for a complimentary trial or view the demo

The Power of Integration

Posted by Rod McLane Jun 30, 2011
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Are you ready for the next generation of IT Service Management?

And if you are, how do I get there?

 

 

 

Is your IT organization struggling  with integration of your IT management applications?

 

If you’re like most IT departments, chances are you still spend a lot of time and a lot of money (up to 30% of your IT budget) just trying to get all the various pieces of your current solution  working together.  Should you really have to spend time integrating core applications that are supposed to be managing your IT ?  Shouldn’t these applications work together seamlessly? Do you really want to be a development shop?Untitled.jpg

 

If your IT service management solutions such as the configuration management data base (CMDB), asset management, change management, and service desk are all separate, this can lead to some major headaches for your IT staff. 

 

With siloed systems, what happens if you need to add or retire an IT asset or if your exception reports identify orphan IT assets? In all likelihood your IT department will need to spend a lot of time and money to reconcile multiple databases, and tie the multiple processes together. Or worse, one of your individual solutions has an updgrade and the integration you just wrote, now does not quite work since the left hand was talking to the right hand or you are using point solutions from two separate companies.

 

If you have three or more disparate systems for IT service management, CMDB and IT asset management and those systems all have different releases and patch levels, are you really ready to upgrade them at the same time and maintain those integrations?

 

There is a better way

 

A natively built and seamlessy integrated solution eliminates these headaches and allows you to focus on your core business, serving your customers.  Spend more time thinking about ROI and KPIs than APIs.

 

BMC offers an IT Service Management solution that has been architected with native connectivity between critical functions and processes such as: Asset Management, Service desk (Incident and Problem Management), Change and Release Management, Service Catalog and Request Management, Service Level Management and your CMDB.  This native connectivity allows you to get up and running quicker and in a more cost effective manner than vendors whose solutions do not share a common platform; not to mention a much lower TCO over the long haul. By leveraging our BMC Atrium CMDB as the central data repository for all your IT management applications, you can reap the benefits of a single representation of your infrastructure and the business services it supports.  This commonality facilitates: real-time data analysis and reporting, improved data integrity and normalization and improved decision support capabilities.  When it comes time to upgrade your BMC system, the fact that it’s based on the BMC Action Request System ensures that your upgrade path is uniform across all applications.  The BMC IT Service Management solution also features out-of-the-box templates and workflows (including support for ITIL v3 best practices) to get you up and running quicker and ensure that your IT integrations and processes are compliant with industry standards and best practices. 

 

Tell us about some of your integration horror stories.

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