In today’s era of digital transformation that companies are going through, IT service management (ITSM) has a significant role to play in making this transformation effective and viable. More organizations are focusing on adopting the ITSM best practices for maximum results. From my perspective, the most important best practice that needs to be followed is to stay abreast of the technological advancements and understand the business needs. It is also vital to communicate with peers and competitors in the market to share ideas and be acquainted with the market trends and challenges.
There are several technological advancements, such as artificial intelligence (AI), automation, and machine learning that are playing a key role in the evolution of ITSM. With these advanced technologies, there is more stress on automation of the IT administration tasks to reduce spend and improve the time to market of IT Services. By avoiding working on repetitive tasks, ITSM teams can focus on value-added activities to the business.
With new technology trends being increasingly adopted in the industry, we strive to automate tasks, increase efficiency, and speed of IT management, reducing the errors in the process. On the other hand, data analytics and AI provide us with the capability to give real time information to the business, allowing us to conceptualize better services and products for the end customers. The data derived from ITSM and analytics provides the ability to the decision makers to make smarter investment decisions and extract greater ROIs.
Managing IT in a Hybrid Environment
With more businesses moving to cloud, there is a lesser need for internal IT infrastructure and support. This new trend of relentless cloud adoption has given rise to a new form of IT governance.
While IT forms the fulcrum of the modern business, organizations must embrace digitalization to optimize their business processes and improve their agility in order to stay relevant to their clients
From the organizational standpoint, the attention of ITSMs has moved from just the process, which is dominated by compliance and control, toward ‘the customer.’ Today, almost every organization is aiming at improved customer satisfaction to support business growth. As the Head of Global IT operations, I have realized that it is important for IT Service Management to engage closely with the business and understand where IT can enable and accelerate business demand.
Over the years, IT was considered only as a key tool to create a strong base for the business. Now, it has become the heart of the business itself. Startups have created disruptions in the industry with the support of new age innovations such as cloud, robotic process automation, AI, and the likes. While IT forms the fulcrum of the modern business, organizations must embrace digitalization to optimize their business processes and improve their agility in order to stay relevant to their clients.
The Evolution of ITSM
Over the past 20 years of my professional journey, I have donned several diverse and dynamic positions and responsibilities, and have witnessed the evolution of ITSM from close quarters. Initially, there was a need for defining standards to manage our IT processes, services, and infrastructure. Over time, the focus has shifted from defining and managing the IT processes to analyzing the data from our ITSM systems to improve the insight of our business and develop new IT services and products that can be offered to our customers.
Besides being more agile and providing better data insight, another factor that has changed over the years is the rise of cyber attacks, following which, security has become a core component of ITSM.
Advice to New Business Leaders
While aligning business practices with ITSM trends, it is essential for ITSM practitioners to be agile and proactive. You need to challenge and review your existing ITSM processes to determine if they are still ‘fit for purpose’. In the age of digital transformation, ITSM processes that were defined five years ago are becoming obsolete and need to be upgraded. This means, stop non-value added activities, automate where possible and use human intervention only where required. For ITSM, agility and adaptability are the keys. Besides, it proves important to stay abreast of the growing trends and technologies while ensuring the client's requirements are met through innovation. Communicating with peers can add value to the services to understand the challenges and unique scenarios in the industry. The learning never stops. In three years down the line, the role of CIOs, CTOs and IT heads will change, and learning is what will ensure the survival of the fittest and the smartest business leaders.