IT Service Management In 2012: In The Words Of Marvin Gaye, “What’s Going On?”

I bet in your head you just sang “What’s Going On” to yourself – I hope that you did, it’s a classic. Anyway, it’s that time again … my Forrester colleague Glenn O’Donnell and the itSMF USA are set to launch their annual itSMF USA/Forrester IT service management (ITSM) survey and I can’t help think that, as we are in a radically different ITSM world from when they did the last survey, the results will be significantly different – showing that we have upped our collective ITSM game.

What do I mean by “radically different ITSM world”?

IMO it’s difficult to talk “ITSM” these days without covering topics such as bring your own device (BYOD), mobility, social, customer-centricity (or Outside-In thinking), SaaS ITSM tools, and cloud. It’s not that these are new areas; it’s just that in the last year they have finally moved from “things that we should think about” to “things that we should be doing things about.” A recent blog by my colleague Eveline Oehrlich, to promote the new Forrester Service Management and Automation Playbook, starts to describe how and where infrastructure and operations (I&O) teams needs to adapt to both the new business and the new IT landscape.

So where were we in 2011?

As a quick recap on the last survey, two Forrester blogs (both by Glenn) contain info on: the benefits of ITIL (the ITSM best practice framework) and the level of customer satisfaction with ITSM tools (including SaaS-delivery):

Other highlights (or low lights) include that:

  • Only 21% of respondents planned to switch service desk tool vendor in the following two years – but how will the continued march of SaaS have affected this in 2012?
  • 35% of ITSM buyers plan to take advantage of SaaS-based IT management and automation tools – surely this will have increased significantly given the spectrum of IT management and automation tool needs?
  • For change management, 58% of organizations operated in unacceptable environments – unfortunately my gut is telling me that this won’t have changed. Change (or more specifically poorly applied change management) is still the cause of way too many incidents (another one of Glenn's stats).
  • 26% stated that “We have a CMDB/CMS and get value from it” – again I don’t think this will have changed significantly, I personally can't believe the figure was this high.

Changes for 2012

In the new survey Glenn has dropped some questions and added in some new ones. Interesting ones for me are around service catalog initiative success and IT financial management maturity – two areas where we have received a considerable volume of client inquiries in 2012.

So keep an eye out for the new survey … I’m sure one of us (probably Glenn) will be blogging about it. The results will be made available to itSMF USA members and Forrester clients so if you are neither personally contribute to the survey to get a free copy as a “thank you.” 

Finally, if you are a Forrester client, please check out the SMA Playbook:



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Are you a great driver?

Yes, we all now that the great majority of us think we are better than average in many things.

These surveys ask people who have been driving development programs how well they have done. Surprise, surprise, the results were great! This is what the IT people think or hope. The business might disagree.

The same people usually also report that they have implemented x processes but any closer study reveals that there is no evidence of a process working. There might have been a process workshop and some documentation but that is all. But the results are great.

Thanks Aale

Glad to see you back from your loooong vacation. I agree with you and it is up to the survey makers to try to understand how the questions unduly influence the answers and how the sample is biased. Then there is the issue with perceptions potentially being far removed from reality.