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The Future of IT Service Management (ITSM)

How will IT service management (ITSM) evolve for MSPs and corporate IT departments over the next few years? ManageEngine and tools went hunting for answers.

The journey involved a survey on IT Service Management Future Readiness. It spanned 10 questions and garnered 300 responses. MSPs can use these results to potentially understand how to address IT department fears about the future of ITSM. The questions focused on five key areas of ITSM.

1. Working in IT

A massive 82% of those who responded stated that they believe working in corporate IT will get harder over the next three years. That parallels similar findings in the cybersecurity market, where a separate survey from ESG points to growing challenges in today's operations centers.

As mundane and easy IT department tasks are replaced with artificial intelligence, I believe, working in corporate IT could become harder over the next three years.

2. The impact of politics on IT staffing

Nearly two-thirds of respondents thought that the current local and global political climate is adversely affecting IT recruitment -- with some roles seen as more affected than others. Through political uncertainty like the Brexit vote, the US Presidential election and Australia's policy on foreign workers, there could be a shortage of available technicians. The pool of skilled IT professionals is already fairly shallow and seems to be shrinking. According to the survey, it's definitely an area in which corporate IT organizations need to plan for a change to the status quo.

Still, there are reasons for hope. CompTIA, for one, is working overtime to attract a diverse set of skilled employees into the IT ecosystem.

3. Confidence in cloud services reliability grows

Although there have been some major outages with huge cloud service providers like Amazon this year, the majority of ITSM professionals still have a positive outlook on the cloud. According to the survey, the responses were an affirmation that people strongly believe in the benefits of public cloud services despite any high-profile failures reported in the media -- only 8% of respondents felt that the Amazon failure had adversely affected their company's position on the cloud. If nothing else, the outage did get some discussions started within the company about the risks, which has allowed for disaster recovery plans to be implemented.

4. Best practices

Only 24 percent of ITSM professionals show confidence in the existing ITSM best practices, including ITIL, making a strong case for their revamp. As technology changes, the tools needed to manage and keep track of it could also use an update. While IT service desk, incident management, and service request fulfillment, seems to stay the same, current best practices related to those may seem sufficient. However, an organization that is looking to understand how best to meet capacity management needs in a hybrid cloud environment may require new tools and services to get the job done.

5. Meeting Service Expectations

As employees receive better services and support in their personal lives through companies they interact with via social media and other means, they expect also more from corporate service providers such as IT, and human resources (HR).

IT departments sometimes have a hard time seeing that their fellow employees are actually customers of their department and should be treated as such. 29% of respondents to the survey think that their IT department delivers better services, support, and customer service to employees than could be expected from consumer-world companies. Especially for Millennial employees, who are used to the new customer service model, obtaining service through older means could be a foreign concept. It will continue to be important to treat employees as customers and develop service request formats to meet the wants and needs of those used to consumer support.

You can view the full report and findings here.