Top IT Service Management Trends to Watch in 2019
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Top IT Service Management Trends to Watch in 2019

By CIOReview | Tuesday, June 11, 2019

FREMONT, CA: IT Service Management (ITSM)—the craft of implementing, managing and delivering IT services to meet the need of an organization —ensures the appropriate mix of people, processes, and technology to provide value. The ITSM community has moved forward in the past years. Emerging trends that are continuously changing ITSM landscape will drive the years ahead and shape the ongoing conversation on IT service management. Since there is no 'one size fits all' in ITSM, the below-listed trends will help organizations understand what could be vital for them.

• Artificial Intelligence will Move Beyond the Hype

The industry's obsession with AI will still be a significant area of focus. AI is predicted to make ticketing processes more efficient not only by telling how many tickets are in the queue but also by providing insights on how to resolve the most accessible ticket faster. Also, there will be openings of AI floodgates for machine learning, in particular, to help ITSM with tasks from those that are repetitive to those that could never have been done without the technology augmenting human capabilities. AI is also applied to ITSM to provide any time service desk help to employees, to create digital agents that understand employee requests to trigger automation wherever possible.

• Digital Transformation  

For IT, digital transformation means more than just aligning technology with the mission of the business and involves integrating technology into the business, so IT becomes a critical element of its operations and not only a provider of services. There is no doubt that ITSM will continue delivering the business needs for digital transformation in the coming years. ITSM can be an excellent platform for digital transformation from better designing, providing, managing, and enhancing IT services to help improve business back office potential using its principles, capabilities and technologies. Along with digital transformation self-service, advancement in AI and the consumerization of technology and its impact on workspace are also expected to continue.

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• Increasing Cloud Migration

The year ahead will be the year of businesses migrating to the cloud with the critical factor being the decreasing cost of the cloud instances. It's a well-known fact that prices of setting up and maintaining self-hosted systems are higher because firms need to pay for both the equipment and the administrators who will take care of it, and companies of any size can quickly adopt cloud. Cloud offers a new approach to IT service delivery that does not include the expense of setting, management, and maintenance of the infrastructure and underlying technologies. The constant innovation of cloud-based ITSM tools allows organizations to be at the forefront of cutting-edge technologies and increase their competitiveness and efficiency.

• Leap to Enterprise Service Management Environment

ITSM tools are designed for tracking service levels, maintaining tracks of services requests and incident reports, and generate dashboards for users to visualize status. Business units within large organizations such as human resources, customer support and finance can benefit significantly from these types of tools. The present time is ripe for adoption of ITSM tools to deliver Enterprise Service Management (ESM). ESM not just restrict itself to IT but uses ITSM principles and technology to widen service management across various business units of an organization. ESM requires ITSM tools to be multi-tenant so that they can aid various degrees of isolation between different business units.

• The proliferation of Self Service Options

ITSM-rooted self-service models have been around for some time, and they will continue to expand also. The spread of self-service options is driven by the ongoing digital transformation, the consumerization of technology and the emergence of the millennial group in the workspace. Self-service options aim to empower the end user and can help free up resources and reduce ticket volume on organization's end. When properly deployed, self-service software can allow users to control their IT experience as well as help themselves. One can use self-service products for crowdsourcing problems and finding solutions.

• The Need for Mobility

Employees and IT leaders are increasingly mobile and are investing lots of time in using smart devices while on the move. With this, they are accessing multiple social applications, and there is an expectation of getting work completed while being on the move. For ITSM, this is a significant opportunity to the trend of having most ITSM functions available to them in mobile applications and presented to them in a format that makes their lives easier. This enables employees to request services and report incidents while on the go. IT leaders are expected to and want to be able to look at operational dashboards/reports and handle approvals while on the go.

• Containerization and Microservices Disrupting ITSM Tooling Practices

Containerization is showing no signs of reducing its momentum and is driving digital transformation in the organizational IT segment. From an ITSM perspective, the trend represents a fundamental shift in the tooling as IT professionals have to manage the resulting ITSM complexity in the network architecture. With containerization and microservices, firms can function a system of connected software components and infrastructure environments. As a result of which, performance and security-related information must be monitored, captured, analyzed, and combined from the different sources to draw accurate conclusions.

• ITIL4 Debut

The world is witnessing agile development more and more in ITSM. Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL), the world's most widely recognized framework for ITSM is here to empower IT organizations travel at the speed that the business requirements while aligning the framework with other methods, such as agile, DevOps, and cloud computing. ITIL can be significant to service management, as most firms work with its processes that are unlikely to make changes immediately. Perhaps ITIL 4 will help with deciding what factors are relevant to the situation, an essential enhancement for the framework within an organization.

• Customer-Centric Approach

With the tremendous development of technology, customers can choose from various communication channels to get in touch with businesses. The majority of business-to-consumer companies provide high-quality customer experience by enabling their clients to easily communicate with them in case of any queries with the product or service. The same customer-centric approach is becoming a priority for IT companies. ITSM tools are expected to guarantee users the best customer support, including user experience, visual and interaction, chatbots, and self-service.

• Employee Experience Moving to the Center Stage

There is much in ITSM that goes wrong without the intervention of people. The possible areas are extensive, including the required skills and capabilities for particular ITSM jobs, through effective leadership and management, to the need for organizational change management when driving change. Moreover, it is essential to remember the changes happening right now in IT. AI, self-service, and automation are becoming more common in the industry, meaning that some soles of employees in IT, and required qualifications, will change. To this end, a push toward improved or team-centered cultures in the service desk is expected in the year to come.

As the digital landscape grows and changes rapidly, so does the role and perception of ITSM. Organizations are begging to see ITSM as a business enabler, thanks to the technologies facilitating it. The years ahead will deepen the role of ITSM, and the above trends will help reduce costs and time to repair, meet service-level agreements, increase employee engagement and productivity, and, ultimately, improve customer satisfaction scores.