IT Service Management (ITSM) defines the processes that organizations use to deliver information technology in a way that delivers measurable business value. For the last several years organizations have adopted structured ITSM approaches, often based on ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library), to ensure that IT services meet the needs of the business, both now and in the anticipated future.
1. Why use an ITSM
A key feature of ITSM is the automation of service management and delivery, often through the use of robotic process automation (RPA). RPA allows for the replacement of manual, repeatable tasks with programmable bots. For example, an organization can use RPA to provision a new account profile when on-boarding a new employee, or allow employees to make changes to their services via web-based chat, in which the chat agents performance automated acts (e.g. resetting a password) based on user requests.
Today, many organizations have adopted IT service management platforms from vendors including BMC (Remedy/Helix), CA Technologies, and ServiceNow. ITSM products from these and other vendors serve as the platform for automating tasks, providing customer self-service, and managing trouble tickets and project tasks. In addition, most organizations have deployed ERP platforms such as Workday and SAP Success Factors to automate onboarding of new employees.
2. What are the benefits for the Unified Communications?
UC administrators can benefit from integrations with ITSM and HR platforms to apply the benefits of ITSM and RPA to management of voice and related applications. For example, integrating a UC administration management suite with an ITSM and/or HR platform can offer the following benefits:
- Automated provisioning of UC account information including phone number, profile, policies and access controls as new employees are on-boarded, as well as de-provisioning as they leave the organization
- Sharing of inventory information between a UC administration tool and an ITSM platform
- Synchronization of moves / adds / changes over time
- Automated populating of trouble-tickets, with data from UC platforms
- Provisioning of role-based access control to enable individuals to administer services for those within their work group
- Elimination of staff time necessary for manual provision and on-going management
- Enabling self-service moves/adds/changes through an ITSM or HR platform
3. Why integrate ITSM with provisioning software
Integrating UC administration and ITSM and HR platforms for provisioning and ongoing management reduces staff time required for operational management and maintenance tasks, as well as potential for misconfiguration, especially for those running multiple UC and contact center platforms. Nemertes has consistently found significant opportunities to reduce UC administrative costs by leveraging specialty tools to automate provisioning and management. Integrating UC administrative management tools with ITSM and HR platforms offer the potential for not only further cost reductions but also:
- A simplified experience for end-users as they manage their own applications and features through self-service portals and chat bots
- The ability to integrate provisioning with existing business processes, including automated approvals
- Reduction in potential outages from misconfigurations by enabling establishment of a standard catalog of service requests
- Enables further refinement based on identified, repeatable service requests
Those looking to achieve the benefits of ITSM in their UC administrative management should look for UC management solutions that offer pre-built integrations with popular ITSM and HR platforms as well as APIs that enable custom integrations.
By Irwin Lazar, Nemertes