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Welcome to the SysAid Blog - the place to go to find out where the IT industry is going, and what is SysAid’s role in it.

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Posted by on in Technologies

Disappointment in DevOps

DevOps is currently very fashionable, and so I hear lots of people talking about how their IT organization will be doing DevOps over the next year or so. The trouble is, as soon as I hear this I cringe, because I can’t help thinking about all of the failed improvement projects these same IT organizations have run in the past. Their stories are remarkably similar and they go something like this…

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Posted by on in Service Desk

Cohesive ITSM team

Leading and managing an IT service management (ITSM) team can be tough. Not only do you need to think about your own performance, how you feel about your job, and your motivation, there are also the perspectives on the team as a whole and of the individual team members.

Team dynamics are an interesting thing – I guess that anything that involves people and the unpredictability of human behavior always is. Even if you’ve handpicked each team member from the crème de la crème of the ITSM industry there will still be times when day-to-day operations are adversely impacted by personality clashes, personal issues spilling over into work, and general slumps in performance. Sadly, it can be even more difficult in the real world, where your ITSM team might be an “inherited” mixed bag of great people – some brimming with potential but have yet to deliver on it, and maybe the odd one or two who think that they are paid to attend work rather than to actively embrace and participate in work.

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Posted by on in Events

Service Desk and IT Support Show (SITS)

Are you going to the annual Service Desk and IT Support Show (SITS16) in London? It’s a free-to-attend IT service management (ITSM) and service desk event where not only do you get to see just about every ITSM tool vendor on the planet, and there’s a few, there’s also a wealth of great ITSM and service desk seminar content available to attendees. It’s not too late to register for the event, if you can get to London for the 8th or 9th of June.

I’m very pleased to be attending SITS again this year, it’s a great ITSM event, but the reality of attending has hit me – with so much quality seminar content to choose from, which sessions do you see and which do you sadly have insufficient time to make? At SysAid we call this “Sophie Danby’s choice,” that’s having to forgo quality presenters and topics due to the competing seminar streams. Unfortunately, it’s a common issue across the global ITSM event circuit that we never seem to be able to avoid.

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Posted by on in Cloud

Cloud Terminology

In Part 1 of this blog series, I covered what cloud native applications and microservices are – and left you dangling as to what containers are. I also mentioned “bees” but that’s irrelevant. Here, in Part 2, I explain:

  • Containers
  • Hybrid and composite clouds
  • Software-defined everything
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Posted by on in Cloud

Cloud Terminology

The cloud is now ten years old, if you view Amazon Web Services (AWS) as kicking off the cloud industry with its inaugural EC2, S3, and SQS services back in 2006. It’s an industry, and IT offering, which has been through the proverbial hype-cycle to become a mainstream IT solution that’s now used and accepted by enterprises of all sizes, and in all industries, around the world.

However, the general public’s understanding of cloud doesn’t tally with the maturity of the cloud. A recent US survey revealed that half of Americans think that cloud computing is affected by the weather (and this was before Google data centers were hit by lightning). In Australia, a quarter of active cloud users didn’t know they were using the cloud. This is okay though as one of the benefits of cloud is hiding the complexity of the IT.

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Posted by on in ITIL

Value in your IT job

We all like to believe we are doing a good job. We all take pride in our achievements. But sometimes those of us who work in IT focus on the wrong things, particularly when the successful completion of technical tasks can be so satisfying that it takes on a life of its own.  Clearly, we must be technically proficient.  But it may be less obvious that technical proficiency is simply NOT enough. Unless we focus on creating value for our customers, whatever we do simply won’t be good enough.

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Posted by on in Service Desk

DevOps with Your Service Desk

If you ask what a service desk is you might get any of these responses:

  • IT operations or IT service management (ITSM) team: “The team we give the responsibility of dealing with IT issues.” And the more cynical among them might add “… but little in terms of knowledge or tools.”
  • Business users: “The people who can help us with our IT issues … some of the time.”
  • Development: “A worthless and unskilled part of IT.”

Okay the last one might be over-the-top cynical but the service desk can struggle to be valued outside of IT operations.

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Posted by on in Service Desk

ITSM Self-Services

Today’s tech-savvy customers are taking their consumer-world IT issues into their own hands, with customers now looking online for answers in preference to calling or emailing the supplier to help them to fix the issue. Welcome to the era of the self-service-empowered customer!

And self-service adoption continues to grow. Forrester Research has stated that self-service usage has increased from 67% in 2012 to 76% in 2014; and, according to a 2011 Gartner prediction, by 2020 the customer will manage 85% of the relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a human. It was a bold prediction and we might not fully make it but we probably won’t be too far off as consumer-world self-service continues to gain traction.

But how is employee self-service being encouraged within organizations, especially IT self-service?

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Posted by on in Events

ITSM time for HDI16

So Pink16 is done and dusted, and it’s already time for the second of the year’s IT service management (ITSM) industry’s “grand slam” events – HDI. Alas, I’ll be missing out on this one too, but it doesn’t stop me from dreaming about who I’d like to hear speak if I were there.

My far-more-famous colleague Joe the IT Guy will be at HDI 2016, and no doubt he will be using my session suggestions for his post-HDI blog – some guys definitely have all the luck!

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Posted by on in ITIL

RFPs in ITSM tool selection

As Joe the IT Guy said in his recent HDI blog on selecting a new IT service management (ITSM) tool – “Selecting any new technology is a serious matter.” In particular, there’s little fun to be had with the request for proposal (RFP) process, for all the involved parties. And, having been involved with RFPs on both sides of the seller-buyer divide, I can tell you that RFPs are never fun, but even more worryingly, they can also be dangerous.

You might be thinking “Dangerous? Really?” So consider one of my favorite, and most oft-used, ITSM tool selection statements – “If you ask the wrong questions then you’ll get the wrong answer.” In my opinion, we continue to see a never-ending series of “wrong answers,” i.e. less than successful ITSM tool implementations, that has industry analysts stating that ITSM tools are, on average, replaced every “n” years (where n is usually between 3-5 years depending on the analyst firm).

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