The Forrester SaaS ITSM Tool Market Overview: Who Is Where With What

It’s finally here. The Forrester Market Overview: SaaS IT Service Management Tools covers: a little ITSM tool history and how we have moved on, the benefits and risks of the SaaS delivery model, key selection criteria for selecting a SaaS (or on-premises) tool, and overviews of 23 tools (from 21 vendors) and their functional capabilities across the enterprise and midmarket marketplaces.

“Why on earth did you write a SaaS-only ITSM report?” I hear some cry

It’s simple – Forrester client demand. In 2012, a good 25% of my 400ish a year client inquiries related to IT service management (ITSM) tool selection; and the SaaS-delivery model (and the key vendors) was covered in nigh on all of them. That’s not to say the client ultimately went SaaS though, inquiries are very much about rapid information exchange in helping clients make important decisions. It’s not about making the decision for the client.

What the SaaS ITSM market looks like

The following figure shows the 23 vendor tools split by average customer subscription (seat) count (described as Enterprise, Upper Midmarket, and Lower Midmarket) and their degree of customer success (the number of paying customers):

There are of course other ITSM tool vendors who declined to participate for a variety of reasons. One would be that they were not briefing Forrester analysts and thus not on our radar.

The key benefits of SaaS for ITSM

Read more

Are You Really Ready To Test Agile?

Early this year, on January 15, I published our first research on testing for the Agile and Lean playbook. Connected to that research, my colleague Margo Visitacion and I also published a self-assessment testing toolkit. The toolkit helps app-dev and testing leaders understand how mature their current testing practices and organization are for Agile and Lean development.

The Agile Testing Self-Assessment Toolkit

So what are the necessary elements to assess Agile testing maturity?  Looking to compromise between simplicity and comprehensiveness, we focused on the following:

  • Testing team behavior. Some of the questions we ask here look at collaboration around testing among all roles in the Scrum teams. We also ask about unit testing: Is it a mandatory task for developers? Are all of the repeititive tests that can be run over and over at each regression testing automated?
  • Organization. In our earlier Agile testing research, we noticed a change in the way testing gets organized when Agile is being adopted. So here we look at the role test managers are playing: Are they focusing more on being coaches and change agents to accelerate adoption of the new Agile testing practices? Or are managers still operating in a command-and-control regime? Is the number of manual testers decreasing? Are testing centers of excellence (TCOEs) shifting to become testing practice centers of excellence (TPCOEs)?
Read more

Automation: Is It The Only Way For IT To Really “Do More With Less”?

The changing business and IT landscapes bring increased demand for IT (or IT services) AND increasing complexity. The slide below (a tweaked version of a genuine Glenn O’Donnell original) paints a picture of increasing complexity and an impending capability gulf; if it isn’t already here.

So can IT organizations cope by increasing their manual ability, usually by employing or buying in more people resource?

Even if they could get suitable resource (availability and recruitment can be issues), could the parent business afford the jump in labor costs as these continue to be a highly-visible element of overall IT service delivery costs? Adding more people doesn’t necessarily fit in with the now oft-quoted mantra of “do (or deliver) more with less.”

A recent webinar with ServiceNow looked at drivers for and opportunities from automation, and how to approach building the business case for service management AND automation. Where Forrester defines automation as:

“Tools that perform functions otherwise done by humans.”

If you want to cut to the chase (i.e. don’t want to read the blog) …

… Then the on demand webinar can be found here: http://info.servicenow.com/LP=1021 (sign up required)

Read more