Maturity model for Service Catalog and Request Management
Your organization can reach your goal of service catalog and request management maturity through best practices adoption and native BMC product process integration.The following maturity model helps you optimize the rollout of Service Catalog and Request Management processes and solutions in phases.
This topic describes the following phases:
Phase 1 — Setting up BMC Service Request Management
The goals of this phase of the maturity model are to:
- Quickly gain efficiencies in the delivery and support of IT services through a self-service solution on top of your existing BMC Remedy ITSM implementation (incident, change, asset, work orders)
- Provide a centralized catalog of requests (including price, service-level targets, approval rules) to automate and monitor standard requests
- Enable self-help through knowledge access to reduce the number of calls to the service desk
- Promote standardization of request entry and fulfillment through a single point of contact
- Provide key IT support data to the business
Request catalog through BMC Service Request Management
You can use the BMC Service Request Management product to derive additional value from your existing BMC Remedy ITSM investment by enabling self-service and automated request fulfillment. BMC Service Request Management is tightly integrated into the BMC Remedy ITSM suite and the BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database (BMC Atrium CMDB) product.
BMC Service Request Management gives users access to knowledge articles, which enables them to help themselves and reduces the number of requests coming into the service desk. As a result, IT professionals can focus on mission-critical activities, such as resolving incidents related to service failures and restoring critical services. The product also provides the ability to automate workflows for each service, enforcing consistency of process and faster fulfillment of requests.
BMC Service Request Management enables the IT department and other business departments to:
- Define requests that are handled through a self-service portal (supplying name, description, price, required input from users, approval rules, expected completion time, and so on)
- Publish available services in a request catalog
- Automate the fulfillment of requests from users through a workflow engine
The focus for this initial phase is on request types that create the most effort for service desk staff, examining both frequency of requests and average effort spent per request. Extremely complex request types and non-IT request types should be addressed in future phases.
Request types offered through the catalog are defined through service request definitions (SRDs). Each SRD provides the information required to facilitate the selection and execution of delivery for a type of request. This information includes attributes, such as categorization, effective start and end dates, pricing information, approval rules, service-level-target criteria, and the definition of application objects that support the delivery of a service.
The request management solution permits IT to define a unified and simple front-end for any type of request from end users and other IT employees. Even external web pages can be integrated to build a single point of contact for any IT interaction.
When a user submits a service request, the request management solution initiates, manages, and tracks all of the necessary processes — performing full request lifecycle management. It routes requests for approval where required and, when approvals are obtained, triggers and tracks the appropriate fulfillment processes to ensure defined service level targets are achieved. Users can check the status of their requests at any time through a simple online inquiry.
Built-in reporting and additional analytics capabilities provide the information required to further optimize the request portfolio and show the value of the initial implementation to key stakeholders in the company.
BMC delivers a best practice Service Management Process Model and best practice configuration data for BMC Service Request Management to support the fast implementation of a request management solution.
Self-help knowledge through BMC Knowledge Management
The BMC Knowledge Management product quickly enables you to improve staff efficiency, customer service and satisfaction, and service quality. Service desk efficiencies can be dramatically improved by reducing incident volume through automated self-service. In addition, web-based self-service options enable employees and customers to find their own answers at any time by using natural language search, thereby dramatically reducing the number of issues directed to a call center.
Integration with BMC Remedy ITSM suite
BMC Service Request Management is fully integrated into the BMC Remedy ITSM suite, leveraging your existing investment into templates, best practices, and so on. Out-of-the-box integration with the Incident Management feature of the BMC Service Desk product, the BMC Asset Management product, and the BMC Change Management product enables the creation of incidents or changes from user requests, and the exchange of comments and files to query common CMDB data or to update status.
Phase 2 — Expanding the use of self-service and making IT activity transparent through the service catalog
The goals of this phase of the maturity model are to:
- Expand the use of self-service in your company by addressing advanced use cases
- Provide initial insight into the catalog of services that IT provides
BMC Cloud Lifecycle Management
Automate the request and delivery of cloud services — from basic virtual machines to multi-tier applications — through the BMC Cloud Lifecycle Management product. Combining the benefits of a single request management (SRM) funnel with best-in-class provision and configuration automation solutions from BMC, you can provision computing resources and applications on the fly across a variety of virtualization technologies.
Integration with identity management solutions
Integration with an identity management solution of choice enables consolidation of password, identity, and permission related requests into a single self-service portal—either as stand-alone request types, or as part of a more comprehensive request type (such as employee onboarding). BMC provides a variety of options to implement such an external integration.
Desktop software distribution
Another advanced use case in this phase of the maturity model is the request and automated delivery of software to an end user's desktop computer. For example, the software distribution can be based on BMC BladeLogic Client Automation software.
Custom application through BMC Remedy Action Request System and TrueSight Orchestration
The BMC Remedy Action Request System (BMC Remedy AR System) product provides a critical component to the Business Service Management (BSM) technology platform. It enables IT administrators to quickly customize and extend out-of-the-box application functionality without programming knowledge. BMC Remedy AR System additionally acts as a single point of integration, including support for popular API types (such as Java and C), web services, ODBC, and utilities.
The TrueSight Orchestration product takes complex, multistep processes and automates them to reduce manual errors and improve operator efficiency. It enables you to delegate tasks to junior staff members and frees up your resources to work on projects that have a greater return for the business.
For example, TrueSight Orchestration helps you to perform the following tasks:
- Automate the deployment, installation, and configuration processes resulting from a change
- Integrate your problem and incident management systems with your change process
- Automatically remediate a change if it causes a problem or service disruption
- Save your server or network engineers from manually creating change tickets
TrueSight Orchestration automates many of the routine tasks associated with administering change and release management across the IT environment.
Making IT activity transparent through the service catalog
The foundation of an effective IT service management strategy begins with a service catalog, which is a representation of business services delivered by IT and other service provider organizations. It is the vehicle that documents and makes transparent the value that IT provides to its customers, and serves to organize and streamline all IT activity around a common concept.
BMC Atrium Core enables you to create a repository of available and agreed-upon services that IT and other business service organizations provide to customers in terms that are relevant to users. This service definition can then be shared by various service management applications, including BMC Remedy ITSM and BMC Service Request Management. The service catalog maintains key information about available services to customers.
With the creation of a full service catalog, the request management solution is used to build out the request types that are supported for the services in the catalog. Supported requests should be tied to specific service offerings, and contracts for those service offerings drive entitlement for requests.
Phase 3 — Implementing mature service management processes
The goals of this phase of the maturity model are to:
- Formalize customer expectations in service level agreements and manage service delivery against these expectations
- Understand costs to deliver service in support of price definition, cost recovery, and more
- Manage the service portfolio
BMC Service Level Management
The level of service that an IT department provides to a company must be aligned with the company's business needs. The BMC Service Level Management application provides a solution that bridges operations and services.
BMC Service Level Management provides a way to review, enforce, and report on the level of service provided to ensure that adequate levels of service are delivered in alignment with business needs at an acceptable cost. It streamlines the most important task of all, the communication between a service provider and its customers.
BMC Service Level Management enables a service provider, such as an IT organization, a customer support group, or an external service provider, to formally document the needs of its customers or lines of business by using service level agreements, and to provide the correct level of service to meet those needs. BMC Service Level Management is a continual and proactive process of:
- Defining IT services
- Agreeing on IT services
- Monitoring IT services
- Reporting IT services
- Reviewing the performance of IT services
The entities used in monitoring service levels are service targets, agreements, and contracts.
Service cost management through BMC IT Business Management Suite
The BMC IT Business Management Suite is a comprehensive and integrated IT management system developed to improve high-level decision making and optimize the use of IT resources. This suite provides a number of solutions, including the BMC Financial Planning and Budgeting solution, which translates costs into business benefits and establishes a level of IT financial transparency that allows IT and its major stakeholders to jointly make fully informed IT investment decisions.
Service portfolio management
A service catalog is not a static document. It evolves as the demand for service from the customers evolves in terms of type and quantity. Successful companies establish a governance process to make good decisions about what new services to offer and what existing services to phase out.
New services enter the service portfolio as planned services. The IT organization establishes a well-defined process to manage the lifecycle of a service from planned to production to retirement.