IT service management (ITSM) has long been the first place, tied closely with the procurement process, for integration with an IT and software asset management (ITAM) program. Since asset users access the service desk or knowledge base to resolve issues, sharing data was a no-brainer. The service desk is often at the front lines to receive hardware assets and store them in the stockroom. As a result, this integration has had an obvious impact on first call resolution (FCR) and customer satisfaction metrics. Organizations that are looking to expand the collaboration beyond the basics of hardware location tracking and break/fix will need to ensure that both teams have a clear understanding of the benefits.
Customers that have a close alignment between ITAM/SAM teams and ITSM have reported that when they work in partnership it makes both areas more efficient. Here are some of the benefits that we’ve heard ITAM/SAM teams mention:
Benefits of Better Collaboration
- Visibility into operating and labor costs associated with hardware and software
- Support effective vendor management
- Provide enriched data to support renegotiation activities
- Improved employee satisfaction with ITSM
- Enhanced accuracy of CMDB data
- More reliable inventory data for all technology assets
- Efficient and effective application migration activities
These benefits are achievable by all organizations that want to put the time and effort into supporting better communication, and can lead to higher levels of maturity.
For organizations that are undertaking digital transformation efforts, the collaboration across areas is even more critical to success. As the pace of IT change has accelerated with the adoption of Development Operations (DevOps) practices, the role of ITSM has evolved. Now, a fully structured and collaborative ITAM/SAM discipline must adapt to continue providing value, as well.
To deliver benefits today, ITAM teams must be proactive and collaborative with ITSM on change management planning. Incident and problem management, the foundation of ITSM is still relevant, but change management, in the context of digital business transformation, has increased the criticality of the relationship. ITAM shouldn’t be involved in every standard change, but the changes that are impacting enterprise software that is installed and running on-premise and also in hybrid clouds, virtual systems and containers can be particularly problematic. Ensuring that these applications are properly licensed to run in these environments is an essential part of maintaining software license compliance. However, the change that happens in these environments can be both rapid and transitory in nature based on demand. Collaborating on the change management process and licensing associated with these applications requires SAM teams are proactively involved in the conversation.
When effective communication has been established with ITSM, the next opportunity is for ITAM/SAM teams to collaborate with Security and cloud teams. Flexera’s acquisition of RightScale is intended to facilitate the SAM team’s collaboration with the cloud deployment teams. With cloud costs increasing and unused instances consuming resources, SAM teams are uniquely positioned to leverage their expertise on controlling cloud costs.