Entering a new year is always exciting and full of optimism. It's a good time to reflect on the previous year, but perfect to look towards the year ahead.
As service management becomes more mainstream—mainly in ITSM (IT Service Management), but increasingly for ESM (Enterprise Service Management). There has been a growing demand for organisations to understand the pivotal role an ITSM solution plays in delivering customer satisfaction, making it a core asset for teams who provide a service.
It's important that your solution should not become stagnant and forgotten about. At a minimum, you should regularly make iterative changes to keep up with the requirements of your customers and organisation. However, to ensure your ITSM solution doesn't become outdated, it's also essential to stay up to date on industry trends too. We know this is a huge ask because of the sheer amount of emerging trends. Knowing which ones to follow can be tricky because some fail, and some gain traction, usually by demonstrating actual value added to a service.
Our team of experts has done all the hard work for you by identifying key trends that could impact ITSM and ESM solutions in 2023.
IT service management (ITSM) is a practice that focuses on how an organisation manages and delivers a service to its end users. IT organisations initially adopted this practice, which is how it got its name. However, it is becoming widely adopted by other arms of businesses that deliver an internal or external service, such as HR, logistics, and Customer Services. This is why we believe in the coming years, ITSM will fall under 'Service Management', allowing the growth of the sub-practices, such as: IT service management, Enterprise service management, and Customer service management.
XLAs are the new SLAs
XLAs (Experience Level Agreements) and SLAs (Service Level Agreements) are formal communication between the service provider and customer. They manage service delivery expectations and provide data to improve the service offering.
There has been a recent shift in how a service is measured from focussing on the technology's performance to the service quality—in relation to the customer experience. This change has affected the metrics that are measured. SLAs were the favoured metrics but are limiting as they only measure the performance of the service, such as availability, resolution time, success rate, etc. Whereas XLAs focus on the customer's experience and perceived service quality—which uses metrics such as customer satisfaction, engagement, value of the service, etc.
Including XLAs in routine performance checks will help shape how the service is optimised instead of focusing on what you think your customers value.
It is common to see the words 'tool' and 'platform' used interchangeably in the world of ITSM. However, they both have slightly different meanings.
An ITSM ‘tool' is a fixed piece of software built for a specific purpose that can't change to fulfil requirements outside its remit. On the flip side, a 'platform' is software that can be moulded and shaped by the customer to suit their unique needs. Yet, in recent years, tools have evolved and can now accommodate apps and integrations that expand their functionality, creating a platform.
We're seeing platforms (including tools with integration capabilities) increase in popularity because of their agility, flexibility and scalability. It lets organisations expand their service offering outside IT, by allowing them to customise the platform to suit processes in departments, such as HR and logistics, instead of investing in separate tools that may not integrate.
"In a recent report, Gartner states I&O leaders will overspend by $2 billion on buying unused features of ITSM platforms in 2026, up from $1 billion in 2021."
A modern ITSM tool that supports integrations—therefore developed into a platform—is often an appropriate approach. It allows organisations to grow the service, adding capabilities to the solution gradually in line with business growth, preventing initial overspending on unnecessary features.
A holistic approach to an agile mindset for ITSM/ ESM
Our experts identified Agile as a trend last year, and it is still a trend this year; however, we have combined it with holism. Why? Because we believe a more holistic approach should be applied when adapting and responding to change. We should alter our mindset from focusing on the technology but also considering the following:
- Is the culture within the team accommodating of change?
- Have those involved with the service delivery been trained to fulfil any new requirements? Or has the change been communicated effectively?
- Has the new process been reviewed, tested, changed and implemented?
Applying a holistic approach to agile even before necessary changes (by encouraging autonomy and collaboration within the team and minimising controlling and bureaucratic management) will create a culture that empowers your team to adapt to any changes.
"According to Gartner, by 2024, 80% of ITSM teams that have not adopted an agile approach will find that their ITSM practices are ignored or bypassed."
ITSM tool migration and optimisation
In 2020, the pandemic was the main driver that caused a surge in demand for service management solutions, as IT functions and organisations saw their customer requirements change overnight. To maintain a new form of business-as-usual, I&Os frantically sought a solution for in-person restrictions. As a result, digital service management suddenly grew in demand.
The early adopters who invested in an ITSM tool may have noticed issues with their service management (poor suitability for their requirements) that were tolerable when their ITSM tool was anticipated to be a short-term fix. Now organisations have realised the advancement of the IT industry, due to the unprecedented acceleration of digital transformation, is here to stay. This has caused a rise in organisations needing to either migrate to a more suitable tool or seek expert advice to optimise their existing setup.
IT service dependency mapping
Earlier in this blog, we mentioned how tools and platforms capabilities can be extended using apps and integrations to optimise ITSM solutions in line with the organisation's demands. To measure, monitor, and understand how your tech stack interacts requires cataloguing this information. Service dependency mapping for IT is gathering information about all your apps and integrations in your service management ecosystem. As your business starts to scale or its focus changes directions, knowing what technology you already have will save you from investing in new apps. Alternatively, if you require another app, service mapping will be vital in helping you perform a gap analysis on your existing tools.
From a delivery perspective, service dependency mapping is an important step to a higher ITSM maturity, showing the readiness to incorporate more advanced features. Mapping will clearly show, for example, incident tickets workflow and when, why, and who they need to go to. This provides the foundations for automating the process.
Put ITSM/ ESM at the forefront of your digital transformation strategy in 2023.
At Adaptavist, we are uniquely positioned to support you at every step of your ITSM/ESM transformation journey. We take the time to understand your requirements, so we can scope a complete solution that delivers exceptional results.
Find out more about our full-scope solution offerings that will transform your organisation. Then get in touch with one of our experts to discuss how we can support you.