Fostering Business Relationships: Courting Your ITSM Users (Pt. 1 of 3)

The secret to modernizing your IT service management operation can be a lot like courtship, specifically that moment where you’re smitten to the point that you’re willing to go above and beyond to meet the needs of the object of your affection.

For successful ITSM organizations, it boils down to showing the same level of affection to their users, the problems they need resolved, and the business environment they operate in. But many ITSM organizations fail to engage and add value to their business operations due to a lack of understanding beyond their own IT domain.

Old-style support is focused on solving specific technical challenges and problems as individual users bring them to the attention of the service desk. Modern ITSM incorporates the development of relationships with business units and their business users to ensure that service delivery and support meets users’ needs.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of building a service management environment that’s based on the internal workings of the IT department, its systems, and the structure of existing workflows. But the true value of the ITSM operation flows from enabling the business to meet its objectives quickly and completely. The business simply doesn’t care about nor understand the internal ITSM structure. Users only desire to stay productive and have any issues resolved as quickly and painlessly as possible.

At the operational level, users connect with IT teams for problem resolution, information, or access to a service. This could involve:

  • Creating a new incident: Someone reports an issue or raises an issue on another’s behalf.
  • Raising a new request: Someone requires hardware, software, or another service.
  • Seeking help: Someone is searching for information to solve an issue or feels that the problem can’t be resolved with self-service and is seeking a knowledgeable human being for assistance.
  • Employee request: Someone requires an HR services request for a new or leaving employee, or other non-IT service.

A business user’s ultimate goal is fulfilling the objectives of their role to support the wider enterprise mission. Any interruption along the path is an unwelcome distraction that the user expects to be dealt with quickly.

To do so, it’s imperative that you understand the business and the industry your organization operates in, the processes your users employ, the regulations they must comply with that affect the data, and the services they need to access.

While it may not be love at first sight, successful service management teams become trusted partners.

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