Five critical steps to ensure ESM success

Jan 23, 2022
Service Management Software
Credit: 120195340 Alexandersikov |

Enterprise service management (ESM) takes the principles developed by IT teams in their service management activities and applies them across enterprise business functions. The goal is to improve the quality of service delivered both internally and externally by creating processes and systems that support the organisation’s service delivery goals.

In today’s world, companies can no longer be certain about where their customers and employees are and how they interact. The shift from most staff working from central offices to remote and hybrid work means companies need processes for employee services, onboarding, managing expenses, and signing contracts that can be conducted easily and remotely.

Organisations rely on the smooth movement of information to facilitate approvals and to ensure the right service is delivered in a timely way to the right person. ESM gives organisations the platform they need to make this happen.

IT teams are ideal candidates to facilitate ESM. By utilising their own experiences in ITSM, they can support other teams seeking to boost their service performance to deliver better outcomes for the business.

These five steps will help organisations on their ESM journey.

1. Identify a department that has a problem to solve and is open to adapting ESM practices

One of the best ways to get broad buy-in when introducing a new tool or process is to find a pilot group that is open to trying something new and has a problem that can be fixed relatively easily. By scoring a quick win, the rest of the business can directly see the value of ESM.

As well as proving the value of ESM, it will get them thinking about their own challenges and how ESM can help.

2. Help streamline processes and remove bottlenecks in service delivery

Every department across the organisation has multiple hurdles in delivering services to employees. Particularly in hybrid work models, the lack of proper channels to log requests along with processes to handle them can delay the delivery of critical services to employees, which can impact organizational productivity. However, an ESM solution can address these challenges by providing a platform to streamline them with simple automations and customisations.

HR departments are a great place to start your ESM journey. Every process, from employee onboarding to leave requests, changing payroll information, and eventually offboarding, is complex and involves many different people. An ESM solution can, where it’s appropriate, automate parts of the process and ensure that information is passed on to the right people at the right time. For example, during onboarding, information needs to be provided to the payroll team and the IT team to ensure access to the system is provided and induction procedures are followed. With so many different parts to the puzzle, an ESM solution ensures nothing is missed and everyone gets what they need, when they need it.

3. Help onboard the ESM platform

After identifying that there’s a problem to solve and that your preferred ESM platform can help, don’t just install the tool and walk away. Help the team get started by creating the custom forms, SLAs, dashboards, and other elements they need to get started.

Onboarding is a great time to do a number of things. You can engage people with training so they can become independent and manage the platform themselves. Rather than running the traditional big bang training where you overload people with everything in a day or two, go with a series of shorter sessions from which people can take what they learn and apply it straight away.

This is also a great time to identify people that can become advocates for ESM and sell it to the rest of the organisation. While it’s likely you’ll be able to identify someone enthusiastic, if you can spend time with an ESM sceptic and help them see the value, they can become even more powerful advocates.

4. Define what success looks like

An effective ESM program isn’t just about deploying a solution on time and within budget—it delivers a measurable benefit. For example, if you were deploying ESM in an HR team to support the onboarding of new team members, the following might be measures of that process’ success:

  • The number of onboarding requests submitted through the enterprise self-service portal
  • The average time taken to complete an onboarding request
  • The number of employee onboarding requests completed within agreed SLAs
  • A reduction in the time taken to complete the onboarding procedures

Establish acceptable service levels for each of these metrics and track how performance changes once the ESM platform is in place. That means understanding performance both before and after the platform is deployed so you can measure the change.

5. Keep improving

Once the ESM platform is in place, monitor its performance and look for opportunities to improve. For example, with an electronic system, you may find that some process steps are no longer needed or can be consolidated or you may discover an inefficiency that was previously masked.

While the initial deployment of your ESM platform may be a quick project, its improvement over time should be seen as an ongoing program. This can include refining the processes you have in place and looking for opportunities to apply the same discipline to new processes.

To learn more about ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus’ ESM capabilities, click here.

ManageEngine covers the entire spectrum of IT management, allowing our customers to be nimble as they navigate their digital transformation. With inherent flexibility, customisability, and extensibility, our suite of products allows customers to start small, add more products as their needs grow, and integrate these solutions along the way to create an efficient technology management layer that spans their entire infrastructure and meets their specific needs.