ITSM automation is a way to take your service desk to the next level while increasing efficiency and creating simpler, cleaner processes. It can also reduce costs, save time, and free up teams from repetitive tasks so they can focus on higher-value work. In order to decide if ITSM automation is right for your team, let us take a look at what it is and what are the 9 benefits:
What is ITSM Automation?
ITSM is often used as a catch-all term for the way you manage information systems, but the term ITSM automation refers specifically to programs and digital methods of use and delivery of ITSM and ITIL processes and best practices. These processes can include creating and tracking tickets, providing self-service answers to simple requests, and works to support enterprise-wide digital transformation.
ITSM automation is achieved with an ITSM software that specifically uses structures and stored knowledge, and AI technologies such as chatbots or virtual agents. Using automated workflows, a knowledge database, and ITSM software to provide the infrastructure, the main goal of ITSM automation is to boost efficiencies across multiple teams and departments.
Top Benefits of ITSM Automation Capabilities
There are several major benefits that prove that ITSM automation is worth considering for your service desk. These top 9 benefits of ITSM automation will help you make the leap to embrace this advanced technology.
Simplified Ticket Creation and Routing
ITSM automation works to simplify ticket creation when there is an issue, while simultaneously routing them to the correct person. Automation can help route the ticket to match agent experience, ultimately reducing the amount of time needed to resolve a ticket from start to finish.
Efficient Incident and Problem Management Processes
ITIL provides insight into best practices for change, incident, and problem management. But where does an ITSM automation tool come into play with these processes?
If an individual or group is responsible for both incident and problem management, they’re likely to be too bogged down in the firefighting of incident handling to spend the necessary level of time on the analysis and investigation that effective problem management requires. However, utilizing ITSM automation software can provide necessary insight into incident management, and necessary support and tools to effectively resolve problems and incidents and implement both long- and short-term solutions.
Improved Customer Experience
Customers of the service desk are similar to external customers: they expect a positive, personal experience whenever possible. Automation technology, such as chatbots with conversational AI and Natural Language Processing (NLP), can help bridge the gap between service desk agents and the end user’s positive experience. Rather than digging through an outdated wiki in a self-help portal on the ITSM platform, users can converse to find answers, as well as provide insight for the service desk before they begin working on the ticket.
Better Efficiency in the Service Desk
Bill Gates once said, “The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency.” This applies to ITSM automation as well.
An ITSM platform with automation can take an already efficient service desk to the next level by amplifying that efficiency. This is because the service desk can maximize their productivity by eliminating time-consuming conversations, and instead using that time to solve the incident or problem itself. This can boost efficiency by as much as 30 percent.
Elimination of Repetitive Tasks
An ITSM automation tool enhances the ability to eliminate lower level tasks (subsequently enabling a shift-left initiative). This strategy moves level-1 tickets to self-help and eliminates some lower level requests altogether through the use of automation, thereby shortening the amount of time spent on low-level tickets. By eliminating the lower level tickets, you maximize the ROI on the cost-per-ticket.
Boosted Analytic Insight
As any manager knows, data is key to understanding where your team’s time is actually spent and, subsequently, to understanding where your team may need extra assistance. In the context of the service desk, utilizing automation can provide insight into areas where workflows may need to be adjusted, which tasks may be consuming too much time, and which tasks could likely be moved into self-service.
Service analytics and reporting through ITSM automation should go beyond flat service desk reports by capturing historical data, storing that data long-term and using pre-built reporting capabilities to visualize trends so you can be more actionable and efficient within your organization’s service delivery strategy.
Improved Flexibility in User Experiences
Automation does not have to be one-size-fits-all, and it can actually help create a more flexible and unique user experience. As different users may have greatly differing needs, an effective ITSM portal with automation capabilities will allow for flexibility in user experience. Through the use of predictive technology, historical data, and custom flows, each user can more quickly and easily achieve their goals in a flexible manner.
Streamlined Escalation of Major Incidents
Similar to the way ITSM automation routes tickets to the appropriate party for resolution, it can also flag major incidents. This is especially helpful in organizations who do not have round-the-clock support teams.
For example, there are periods in the evening and on the weekends where traditionally no one is actively monitoring system issues or tickets as they are outside of the service window. In this case, if systems go down or there is some type of outage, it is of paramount importance to have an automated system that escalates major issues and incidents to the right people -- especially when resolution cannot wait for normal business hours because of a major service interruption. This can result in cost reduction, as outages do not need to impact the bottom line.
Easily Obtained Customer Feedback
The ability to collect anonymous user feedback, whether from those submitting tickets or those completing them, can help leaders bridge the gap between what can be done and what should be.
Automation can make it simpler to obtain opinions, feedback, and suggested changes to processes without lengthy conversations. Rather, automation can prompt a short survey after each interaction to help managers understand which areas can be streamlined and which processes may be overly cumbersome.
With fewer repetitive tasks, better execution of self-serve capabilities, and simpler administration, ITSM automation can provide relief to an overworked service desk and can help your team stay on track.
Nancy Louisnord is the Chief Marketing Officer of EasyVista, responsible for the company’s global and regional marketing programs and product marketing strategy. With more than 14 years of global leadership experience in the ITSM software industry, she is a sought-after presenter at conferences and contributor to several leading industry publications. EasyVista is a global software provider of intelligent service automation solutions for enterprise service management and self-help. Leveraging the power of ITSM, Self Help, AI, and Micro Apps to create customer-focused service experiences, EasyVista has helped companies improve employee productivity, reduce operating costs, and increase customer satisfaction.