ITSM change managers know all too well the pressure that goes along with growing IT environments and climbing performance expectations. When we talk to change managers about their most pressing challenges, we find that low visibility impedes their ability to initiate change with speed and efficiency. Then there’s operating risk. No one likes downtime, but do you really have the visibility you need to determine the full impact of a change on the IT operating environment without implementing a stabilization period?
Visibility in ITSM Simplifies Change Management
In working with change managers, we’ve realized that the challenges usually don’t begin with the change request, but rather at the upstream monitoring process. That’s where visibility is often reduced.
A unified monitoring system that is application-, platform- and device-agnostic provides a holistic view of your IT infrastructure. Our experience indicates that the most efficient IT service management includes a close partnership between service desk and operations teams to leverage IT monitoring information. The result is usually better service, which includes more efficient change management.
For a change manager, having configuration management database (CMDB) visibility and access to the problem manager’s assessment leading up to the change request streamlines the entire process. With this level of integration, conducting an impact assessment is as easy as linking the affected configuration items to the change request. There’s one caveat in this scenario. A certain degree of automation must be in place in order to accelerate the change management process.
Automation in ITSM Accelerates Change Management
Service managers tell us that redundancies in ITSM systems and processes are among the leading causes of delays and can compromise service levels. Re-entering information, tracking changes back to problem investigations and the initial incident, and assigning approvals all add time, not to mention increased potential for errors. When you scale these non-value-added activities to a broader distributed ITSM team, the negative impact on service levels is significant.
The idea is to enter the information once and leverage it as needed throughout the change management process. Once an incident is reported, it can automatically initiate a change request from a simple menu selection. The same holds true for approving changes. Establish your approval criteria and then automatically assign changes to individuals or approver groups. Once approved, leverage the information to automatically notify and assign tasks to change implementers. In ITIL-based ITSM systems, this can be automated simply by linking tasks.
Visibility and automation combined help change managers operate more effectively and efficiently—even in complex IT environments.
Learn how the Nimsoft integrated approach to ITSM can help accelerate change management in your organization.