Why Enterprise Service Management is No Longer Just About IT

Over the years, Enterprise Service Management (ESM) has been evolving steadily to cater to changing business demands. From being called IT Service Management (ITSM) in the early days, it now comprises flexible and user-friendly service management solutions that support both IT as well as non-IT use cases.

As businesses become more digital, the reach of IT extends to almost every business function and process within the organization. Hence, an integrated approach to ESM, versus ITSM, becomes more important than ever. The traditional IT service catalog has evolved to focus not just on handling IT tickets, but on providing a holistic bouquet of services such as resource tracking, repair handling and more.

Today, IT plays a bigger role than ever before in enabling employees to perform their day-to-day tasks. A user-centric view of service management with a focus on superior experience can tremendously boost employee morale and productivity.

Industry trends have also led to the evolution of ESM. For example, with IT development processes such as DevOps gaining popularity, there is greater pressure on infrastructure and ESM teams to be more involved in supporting DevOps processes.

As per the HfS Blueprint Report on ServiceNow Services 2018, organizations now seek robust out-of-the-box and bespoke solutions that are relevant to their operations. In response, providers such as Infosys, are starting to offer high-value, end-to-end solutions. A number of these solutions are highly verticalized and come with strong use-cases.

Tom Reuner, Managing Partner at HfS Research, has highlighted the broader AI and automation capabilities of ESM Café, especially in areas beyond IT, across business functions such as HR and Finance. “Infosys stands out by supporting clients with a vision that is refreshingly devoid of the ITSM jargon.”

Key trends in the ESM space:

AI is Gaining Prominence

Given the growing eminence of AI and automation across the board, it can bring several advantages to ESM as well. Organizations are keen to explore the use of self-service portals, AI chatbots etc. to better serve their employees across departments.

The ability of AI to automate mundane tasks and enable more efficient approaches to service management makes it a valuable tool. The challenge is to balance self-service and automation with high-touch collaborative interactions and expert support in an end-to-end flow.

In our own ESM Café product, we have the option to leverage chatbots with the power of AI and automation that work in tandem with ServiceNow to address queries. Users of the solution benefit from a seamlessly integrated bot that empowers them to take advantage of self-service, helping reduce direct tickets to the service desk and significantly improving user satisfaction.

AI-led automation can help increase adoption of self-service offerings thereby reducing support costs and improving customer satisfaction. Automation and AI can especially play a key role in managing backend processes and knowledge management.

Extending to Other Business Functions & Geographies

As the impact of IT moves beyond the IT team and pervades the organization, there is greater demand for consistency of experience. Employees seek a unified experience across IT and other business functions. Therefore, a single integrated enterprise service management platform that delivers an enhanced user experience, better control, transparency and maintenance is highly desired.

Organizations that have large, global teams demand a global delivery model for services, and a consistent user experience.

Vertical-Specific Solutions

As IT services become more specialized than ever, there is a greater demand for ESM offerings that are tailored to meet the needs of specific industry verticals, versus ITSM. We are already seeing compelling out-of-the-box solutions and examples of extensive tailoring being employed to tackle challenges in higher education, retail, hospitality, and many more verticals.

As part of ESM Café, we offer vertical-specific solutions like Restaurant-in-a-Box, Enterprise Software library for manufacturing domain, Meet the Expert, Travel Management and more. These are designed to address real-time challenges that organizations face. They enable companies to leverage plug-and-play solutions that address pain areas specific to industry verticals and automate them on the ServiceNow platform.

Mobility and Ease of Use

IT services are no longer confined to the back-office. Therefore, having a suite of accelerators and apps can help boost their value and deliver enhanced experiences for users on the go. Users can ideally create, update, track and approve tickets at any time and on any device or Operating System (OS). These apps can allow clients to access plug-and-play solutions to cater to changing business needs.

Actionable Insights

Comprehensive CXO/Service Management dashboards can play a key role in helping executives get actionable insights. These are extremely valuable since they give CXOs a real-time view of service health. Our ESM Café solution too offers self-service, license management, AI and orchestration dashboards based on industry standards and best practices.

Digital Transformation

As more businesses undergo digital transformation, technology needs to be well integrated with business goals so that IT moves beyond its role as a service provider and becomes a key player in business operations. Versum Materials is a great example. The company wanted digital transformation that was cloud-only, SaaS first. As part of this, it needed a comprehensive management portal to manage all of its applications for all vendors. It used Infosys’s ESM Café including the ServiceNow portal. This helped Versum transform Service Integration and Management. The company now meets 99.5 percent of Service Level Agreements (SLAs) on services handled by the portal.

Businesses today demand a seamless technology experience for their employees. As more enterprises focus on integrating their services to deliver consistent experiences, we can expect to see further evolution of ESM.