Enterprise Service Management 101: My Next 5 Tips for Getting Started

Enterprise Service Management 101

Following on from my previous enterprise service management blog, here’s more tips on how to get started.

As a quick recap, part 1 offered advice on how to: (1) self-assess, (2) look for quick improvement opportunities in other lines of business, and (3) plan effectively. I’ll continue with another five “getting started” tips:

  1. Identify your enterprise service management candidates early. Enterprise service management isn’t just about the tool, it’s about having standardized processes and a consistent way of working. And by sharing tools and processes, everything has a similar look and feel, meaning processes are more polished, professional, and capable of increasing value. Business teams that could benefit from enterprise service management include:
    • Facilities – look at the IT workflow associated with your request fulfillment process to automate facilities tasks such as work orders, maintenance requests, office moves, replacement furniture, or facilities FAQ capabilities.
    • HR – again your request fulfillment model can be used by HR to onboard new employees (an automated new hire checklist anyone?), deal with questions, manage requests for training or for vacation, make changes to health plans, and salary inquiries.
    • Legal – enterprise service management could be used to automate legal FAQs, the review and approval of documents, requests for standard contracts and forms, document certification, whistle blowing, and audit advice.
    • Marketing – opportunities include automated request models for branding and new campaigns.
    • Information security – enterprise service management could be used to digitize security training, manage access changes, on-board new employees, and conduct security checks and audits.
    • Project management – look at tracking project-related components, project tasks, and lifecycle workflows from initiation to closure.
    • Accounting and finance – look at using workflow automation for the requesting of yearly accounts, submitting and approving expenses, and sending invoices.
    • Purchasing – enterprise service management could be used for processing purchase orders, quotes, authorization for discounts, and managing vendor correspondence.
    • Office administration – requesting office supplies, printing services, management of meeting rooms, and booking travel/accommodations.
  1. Make the tool work for you! Most enterprise service management solutions – usually IT service management (ITSM) tools than can be applied to enterprise service management scenarios (like SysAid, for example!) – come with customization options, so make sure you use them to their full potential. Things to consider when rolling out enterprise service management practices and technology include:
    • Templates to save time and rework.
    • Data management – can data be imported and exported easily or is further configuration required?
    • How easy is it to onboard new business departments or make changes?
    • Mobile readiness – otherwise known as “always make it easy for people to use your services!” Having options is always a good thing, so having a choice of accessibility options – be it via a standard web interface or an app on a phone – makes it more likely that people will interact with and use the service.
    • Support for branding and logos – so your workflow has a polished and consistent look and feel.
  1. Supercharge a self-service portal. Deploy an enterprise services portal or expand an IT service desk portal to include other departments – making it easier for teams to replace paper-based or email-based workflows. If you’ve been struggling with self-help and self-service, now is your opportunity to make improvements before taking the capability outside of IT.By encouraging employees to use a portal, they can access the solutions they need more quickly through self-help. This has the dual benefit of getting the employee back up and running as quickly as possible while freeing up support personnel to tackle the more challenging, work intensive issues and requests.
  1. Refresh your service catalog. Enterprise service management is all about consistency; when you have the tool and the supporting people and processes, make sure that you have a service catalog to match. Expand your existing catalog outwards – so, instead of just focusing on IT services, it now services the enterprise as a whole.By extending your service catalog you ensure that services are clear, transparent, and visible to all. This visibility will provide the rest of the business with a central point of information about all available services. Plus, along with descriptions of how services can be used, the catalog can be used to explain the level of quality the customer can expect for each service – something that can be optimized by using service level agreements (SLAs).
  1. Identify and sell the benefits of enterprise service management. By introducing enterprise service management you’re taking the relationship between IT and the rest of the business from supporting player to strategic partner – boosting productivity, consistency, and professionalism while breaking down backlogs and silos. Here are a few of the benefits of enterprise service management you should be focusing on in order to sell it to the rest of the organization:
    • Reduced technology costs – enterprise-wide technology programs are an opportunity to take advantage of economies of scale. For instance, the implementation of a single enterprise-wide portal ensures that the cost of the supporting technology is minimized, increasing the opportunities for bulk discounts or extra functionality at a reduced price.
    • A big bump in productivity – one tool and single way of working reduces overheads and the potential for duplication commonly associated with department-to-department handoffs. Using an enterprise service management approach will help to ensure that all employee issues and requests are dealt with effectively and to agreed service levels.
    • Increased consistency and quality – as one way of working makes the overall process more consistent and stable.
    • Greater support for governance – with better visibility of operations meaning improved transparency and making it easier to see what’s going well and where improvements are needed.
    • Breaking down silos once and for all – one of the biggest benefits of enterprise service management is that it works to break down the silos that exist in many large organizations.

So, along with part 1, that’s my eight tips. Are you already using enterprise service management or starting to use it? If so, what have you achieved so far? I’d love to hear how it’s helping your organization. Please let me know in the comments!