It has been said that you can’t manage what you can’t measure, and you must measure what really matters. New service delivery models for IT service management, such as software as a service (SaaS), as well as emerging communications channels for support that include social media, will require some changes to the way you traditionally measure the effectiveness of your services. That’s why you should reexamine your service metrics as you begin to rely more heavily on SaaS, social media, and a more services-oriented approach to IT delivery.
Measurement — A Traditional Perspective
As organizations look to achieve the greatest return for their IT budgets, they are increasing their attention on the service desk applications that help assure quality service delivery. These applications include incident, knowledge, self-service, and problem management, as well as change, service request, and service level agreement (SLA) management.
Service tools have also been more widely integrated with other IT service management tools, including configuration management (CMDB or discovery repository), asset, service catalog, and event management. According to Gartner, “IT organizations of every shape and size continue to struggle with aligning IT service support with the expectations of the business, reducing costs, providing high end-user satisfaction and streamlining processes.”
Aligning IT service support with the needs of the business requires an understanding of what metrics are most critical and how those metrics should change in response to new technologies and new business models. If you don’t understand the metrics around a service desk tool, it can be harder to build a business case for its adoption. This makes it more difficult to select the proper service desk platform, whether it’s delivered on-premises or via SaaS. “The ability to quickly and correctly measure key IT service and support metrics, such as mean time to repair (MTTR), first contact resolution (FCR) rate, end-user satisfaction, cost per calls and so forth, should be the most important criteria when choosing a new tool, and having access to that data is essential for the IT service and support organizations to justify further improvements.”
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