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Guest View: Services and Service: Next-Generation IT

Jimmy Fitzgerald, VP Global Services & APJ Operations at ServiceNow | March 21, 2014
It’s not the consumerisation of IT but rather, it’s the consumerisation of service.

The Goalposts Have Truly Moved

Whether we like it or not, employees are using their personal, or consumer, service experiences to influence their expectations of the corporate IT organisation and other corporate service providers. Outside of work, these employees are enjoying a consumer service experience marked by ease-of-access, ease-of-use, self-service, service request catalogs, anytime and anyplace access, knowledge availability, social or collaborative capabilities, and customer-centric support.

As a result, employees now want, demand, and deserve a corporate service experience that is enabled by service-centric people and fit-for-purpose technology.

The Challenge and Opportunity for IT: Services and Service

The corporate IT organisation already has a high bar to reach - the universal CIO challenge of reducing the cost of IT service delivery while simultaneously improving service quality, so adding consumerisation and the associated service experience demands into the equation is yet another challenge, but it also offers a great opportunity; an opportunity that involves the next stage of evolution for the corporate IT organisation.

Many corporate IT organisations have already improved considerably over the last ten years; most recently using ITSM tools (including self-service capabilities and service request catalogs) to help improve service delivery. But for many, there is still more to do within the IT service delivery ecosystem in relation to consumerisation and improving service experience and it's a challenge that will only be addressed through the better understanding of employee expectations around service and support.

There is, however, an even bigger opportunity outside of IT; one that goes beyond increasing the value, or worth, and perceptions of the corporate IT organisation. The opportunity lies with the other corporate service providers. In some ways, this opportunity is not new-ITSM tools have long been used in non-IT scenarios, often  driven by cost reduction and economies of scale. The consumerisation of service (as opposed to IT) gives savvy CIOs the opportunity to transform business operations by leveraging the corporate IT organisation's service management ecosystem, experience, and service automation for other corporate service providers. Especially where the IT organisation is already focused on improving the service experience.

Thinking Beyond IT: Thinking Service Relationships

Every department in the enterprise is a corporate service provider, even if not a shared service, and each will be impacted by consumerisation and increased consumer-driven expectations. However, these other corporate service providers will most likely be in a more difficult position than IT because while service management and "service relationships" are well defined and automated within IT, they are often inefficient, unstructured, or nonexistent in other enterprise service domains. But there should be little difference in managing service relationships across these departments. In fact these service relationships exist throughout the enterprise. For example between IT and lines of business, HR and sales, legal and marketing, facilities and operations, and even between internal and external service providers. They connect requesters of services and the providers of those services and may include services such as managing defined requests for products, services, information, changes, or assistance with issues. As such, it is time for IT to help its business peers replace inefficient e-mail-based service request and fulfillment processes with a proven service model. The proven service model just so happens to be the IT service model, and hopefully one that has already factored in the demands of consumerisation.


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