What do you like best?
Service Manager provides a rich feature set for all Service Management processes. This is not really differentiating from other tooling but creates a foundation that in combination with other HP tooling, or other vendors aligned with IT4IT.
The real power comes with the integrations that are provided out of the box (or customized). These integrations provide the opportunity to align multiple processes over various platforms creating one source of truth, which for example enables a company to;
- Easily manage monitoring events and escalation of these events.
- Calculate SLA impact per client for a product manager.
What do you dislike?
The Service Manager were using still lacks some functionalities we would like. For example smart ticketing and hot spot analysis. This also reflects why the title contains the word opportunities. The newer versions of Service Manager show great promise not only in additional features were looking for, but also the focus on new technology like HTML 5.
However, on technical level I don’t expect that he configuration work we did on 9.30 will be easier in 9.40 or later versions. Configuration for example is required when attributes are changed, or new CI types need to be pushed. This required changes on forms, databases, scripts and other items in Service Manager. This can be seen as a good or bad thing, depending if you want to go with an OOTB approach or customize to fit.
From my experience with ITIL, I would appreciate an easier solution for;
- Form design (easy addition of attributes, list boxes, auto disabling of elements that are not filled by integration of federation)
- Drag and drop style of interface changes (for example the interface with uCMDB is now done partly with graphical TQL and XSLT. With a simple drag and drop interface it will be more easier to understand and maintain)
These points I mentioned because ITIL isn’t something that is always deployed the same within different companies. So extensive configuration (or customization) is required to tailor Service Manager to match the company process and application landscape.
Recommendations to others considering the product
Make an extensive roadmap which focusses on the processes and integration of information. Service Management tooling alone will only create limited value. When integrating test management, monitoring, project management and other processes the real value is created.
Besides the roadmap really focus on the way of working and the people. They need to be educated, steered and corrected to ensure data quality and value.
What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?
Our goal was to increase the quality of our Service Management processes. This was realized not only by the tool, but also by emphasis on the way of working. The way of working is the most important factor to change.
Part of the quality is the following:
- Redesign of our processes on paper and in the tool. We did benefit from the process designer which was implemented with the help of HP on our current version of Service Manager.
- The service topology approach by HP in combination with the universal data model of the uCMDB provided great benefit. This is still growing due to the implementation of our monitoring tooling at the moment. This tooling will use the service topology to calculate the impact from infrastructure components to the business processes and activities we perform for our customers.
- One way of working was introduced in our company. Because of mergers in the past and recent history the tooling and way of working differentiated between the locations. This was partly solved by Service Manager which created one source for the Service Management processes. The way of working is still something we keep improving, based on what we see in Service Manager.