Monday, October 30, 2006

Give your ITSM implementation a kick in the SaaS

I’m a strong believer in the ‘On-Demand’ model of software, also called Software-as-a-Service’ (SaaS). When I see articles titled “IT Execs To Vendors: Your Software Stinks”, it only increases my believe that ‘On-Demand’ might be a great way to give your traditional tool vendors a kick in the SaaS and accelerate your implementation of ITSM at the same time.

Everyone knows that tools will help automate processes, but when do you apply them and at what cost? Trying to wait until some process improvement cycles are completed is the best practice approach, but the pressure to automate is unrelenting and the big gorillas only crank up the pressure even more by offering Service Desks, CMDBs and visions of nirvana.

I’ve already spewed on about CMDB madness and the savage journey that can bring (see Avoiding a Savage Journey on the Road to ITSM Excellence) so I won’t continue that here, but trying to 'do it by the book' can be just as bad. The fact is, tools can help significantly!

The sad reality is that automation is one way to help ‘do more with less’, but often customers are simply not ready to make large strategic investments in software early in the journey. Trying to go through process implementation without any tool investment can result in hitting the wall, and making investments before you’re really ready can significantly increase the risk of making a bad investment.

Leveraging SaaS tools is one way to bridge that gap. Traditional software products often result in lengthy implementation cycles -- which is why SaaS may not be an option for these products -- but there are products that have been designed to enable SaaS, which can be used very effectively in ITSM implementations.

I Pity the Fool who doesn’t use a Tool!

Subscribing for a 90 day implementation can quickly provide value for the ITSM implementation, while offering a pilot to measure the value from the tool at the same time:

One thing we do, which I think every customer should demand, is a pilot. The full implementation of a robust enterprise solution is up and running very quickly, they use it for 90 days, and if they are making money from it, they decide to subscribe for some longer period. If they haven't proven value to themselves before then, why do it?” – SaaS Skepticism is Predictable, IT Business Edge, 9/28/2006

So, don’t be ‘a fool with a tool’, but don’t be a fool without one either. Kick some Saas and get on the Right Road.
As posted on Fear & Loathing on the Road to IT Service Management Excellence