IT-Automation

IT Automation: The Key to Success is Managing the Change

More and more companies are automating their IT workflow with self-help and self-healing tools and executing strategies that increase efficiency, decrease operating costs and improve service performance. IT teams are finding this strategy is a powerful way to reduce demand and expense for service desk and field service support and, at the same time, increase employee satisfaction. And it allows CIOs to focus their budgets on innovation and other business critical services.

Popular options for automating IT workflow

  • Bots: Bots that serve as virtual service desk agents can reduce the number of service desk calls and decrease resolution time. Many enterprises are implementing chatbots to resolve service desk requests without the interaction of a human. Chatbots also are directing users to self-help documentation, providing access to the company calendar and facilitating password resets. When a chatbot is unable to resolve the issue, it will provide a warm hand off to a human agent or direct a call to the service desk. Along the way, it generates a ticket in the company’s ITSM system for proper tracking and analytics.
  • Self-healing applications: Self-healing applications can repair issues with a user's computer before it disrupts the user. This means far fewer calls to the service desk and dispatches of a field service technician. While self-healing applications are centrally initiated, they run on the user's desktop to evaluate and proactively repair potential issues.
  • Distributed assets: Organizations also are improving user experience and driving down the cost of dispatching field service support to remote offices by deploying assets through the use of connected lockers and vending machines. This allows employees immediate access to service elements that they then can deploy with minimal or no assistance. Other approaches include dedicated tech bars at key company locations and virtual tech bars that connect to a remote (virtual agent) at distributed sites. Virtual agents can see what the user is seeing and provide guidance or resolve the issue through remote takeover. 
  • Multi-channel support: Employees need to contact support teams on their preferred device, and many organizations are creating multiple secure channels to the service desk via phone, tablet, chat and the web. Users can request service, check the status of their request and access real-time dashboards and analytics.

The Human Aspect of IT Automation

Even when new capabilities proven to produce positive results, deploying them – especially in a large organization – is not without its challenges. People are often resistant to change. Regulatory requirements and an urgent timeline due to competition can add to the complexity. When deploying these capabilities as part of a larger IT transformation initiative, it is essential to have a well-defined organizational change management (OCM) strategy that aligns to corporate goals. OCM can help support the new operating model and processes by helping set reasonable expectations and preparing end users to access and use new technology.

Business user adoption is key to successful deployments of IT automation. IT leaders must invest in the necessary OCM activities and engage business customers by seeking their input and participation in the selection process for new technology and providers. This will better ensure their support and sponsorship. Targeted and timely communications, user enablement and stakeholder involvement can make all the difference!

ISG helps enterprises select the right technologies and providers to accomplish their business goals – and manage the change to optimize the investment. Contact us to discuss how we help you.

About the author

Tim Jones is an experienced leader who is passionate about his clients and their success.  As a trusted advisor, Mr. Jones brings 29+ years of experience assisting clients through multifaceted business transitions using fact based data and solid management/methods.