In coordination with our services partner Enterprise Studio and ITSM expert Indrajit Banerjee, we are excited to bring you the next blog in our series about implementing service management beyond IT. Stay tuned for additional blogs and supporting webcasts with industry experts for additional insights about how you can evolve your enterprise and improve your ROI.
We’ve discussed in general terms how service management can break out of its IT-associated box, and examples of enterprise management use cases. If you missed that installment, you can read it here, then listen to the recording of our ITSM – The View Beyond IT webcast for more examples and incentives. Thanks to your responses and feedback which helped us determine which use case we would explore in more detail: A Zoom into Facilities Management.
The Dilemma – To-Go or No-Go?
At first, the main decision point that holds you at the crossroad is, should you take the step forward to extend ITSM and venture into Facilities Management? How do you decide? And, first things first, how much do we invest? To be frank, investments are minimal – you already have your ITSM application deployed in production. If it is only being used for IT today, all you need to do is extend the functionality of the solution; that’s just configuration. Your internal resources may be able to handle it, or you may decide to call in expert help.
Next, do you know what you are looking for in terms of operational requirements? If you do, you’re already a step ahead. All you need is to identify the resources and build a program plan and, in the process, find out whether you may need external expertise to help architect the solution.
Finally, and the most important, you need support from your senior management and leadership team to make it a success. There is enough value gained across multiple areas for even the most skeptical among them to give the nod. What would you say to a proposal giving you more value with minimal investment - Deal or No Deal? Without a doubt, it’s a DEAL.
Now that it’s a deal, what are the challenges?
The transformation of facilities management has its own challenges. There are three key areas that you should investigate. First, delivering the service value to the end users. This requires understanding the end user demands and identifying the set of services that raise the value in the eyes of the user. This brings us to the next barrier to overcome – expectations. Every user has their own expectations and service perceptions. It is difficult but important to identify these expectations and manage them. On top of that comes the industry trend – we see an evolving metamorphosis in facilities management – a move from building-centric to person-centric focus and approach. Today’s facilities management is no longer about building management; rather, it has overflowed into managing the well-being of the people in those buildings.
Breaking down the barriers.
How do we overcome these barriers? Technology plays a vital role here. Integrating the right technologies with the appropriate service delivery capabilities adds tremendous value and creates a high-quality experience amongst the end users. A great service results in a positive user perception and therefore the value realization and end goal. It is all about how we empower users using today’s technology effectively so that we provide the right platforms and channels for their use. This is where service management can be extended to make facilities management more human-centric and help identify the values that lead to positive outcomes.
Where to start and how to progress.
It’s time to look at how service management can help. How do you proceed? Your starting point from an IT perspective is to team up with the Facilities Management side in your organization. Identify the key stakeholders and decision makers, as it is crucial to include them as part of the team. You cannot do this without them: They will provide valuable inputs about how facilities management functions within the organization. Your first stage is to gather requirements, which generally starts with identifying the barriers being faced today and the scope to automate. Identify the various processes that needs to be brought under the purview of transformation.
Facilities Management can be at various levels. This can range from managing an entire city to individual property management. The responsibilities include various areas like health and well-being, security and safety, energy management, water services, waste management, climate control, property access, and so on. Each of these areas typically follows a defined process cycle starting from planning and procurement including policy definitions, implementation and operations including regular maintenance schedules and/or adhoc repairs, and management reviews to nurture continuous improvements.
There is ample scope for transformation using technology in every stage of the process cycle in each of the areas – and this is where service management is often put to best use. The main aim is to provide excellent service measured in people satisfaction, reduced operational costs through effective services procurement and provisioning, increased resource efficiency and professional competence through lean practice. Bringing in automation and optimization through ITSM can tremendously increase the operational efficiencies, improve the quality of service and provide that value to meet expectations.
Incorporating requirements into the technology.
Now that we have captured the requirements and decided which processes to focus on, the next step will be to incorporate them into the technology – in our case the service management solution. Depending on where we want to optimize and automate, we will need to bring in the monitored assets into the system. There are various ways to import the data into the tool. Once they are in, you now start your optimization procedures. Categorization of the assets is important as it will contribute to the kind of analytics and reports you are looking for. This requires careful planning.
Identify the teams that support individual areas – a key to automatic routing of tickets. This should include the vendors that support the services. Once the support structure is defined in the system, the next step would be to construct the service definitions that would be extended to the end users. These will almost inevitably consist of workflows for approvals and deployments, as well as notifications to keep the users on top. Again, these services will range from requisition to break-fix type of user requests in the areas we would like to optimize.
Some of the key areas to focus on are building and infrastructure maintenance, building access such as parking and elevators, appliances, energy supply and climate control, employee recreational facilities, general employee requests, and the like. Once you have a working system, it’s time to do some analytics. Build reports to measure service quality, track operational efficiency, identify improvement areas and conduct employee surveys to visualize their perceived values and their expectations – your food for the next improvement cycle. In no time, you will realize how quickly it helps increase the operational efficiency, reduce operational expenditures and facilitate in future cost planning.
Next time, we’ll explore another area where you may be able to leverage service management. In the meantime, relate more use cases you would like to explore. Please share your experiences, comments and valuable feedback – including any steps you take towards using service management to achieve facilities management utopia!
About the author
Indrajit Banerjee brings more than thirty years of IT expertise to his role as a Senior Services Architect for Enterprise Studio by HCL Technologies
, the preferred global services partner for Broadcom enterprise software services, education and training. He has focused on ITSM for most of his 20 years working with Broadcom and former-CA Technologies software solutions. Indrajit’s passion is working directly with people to listen and understand their problems and challenges, and providing solutions that bring not just results – but smiles of satisfaction from the teams he works with.