Visibility is increasingly important in IT departments as more organizations are impacted by strict regulatory guidelines and need to find ways to optimize the way IT and business units interact. This is especially evident as technologies like cloud computing have gained prominence. With the cloud, managed hosting solutions and other methods of IT outsourcing, many organizations are adopting a hybrid IT strategy in which only core systems remain part of the internal configuration while those solutions are integrated with various third-party services to make a complete technology setup. These hybrid IT environments put more pressure on technology teams to provide strategic oversight, and visibility is critical in this area.
Organizations that want to promote visibility benefit substantially from strategic IT service management investments. A good service desk is only the first component of aligning IT and business functionality. Expanding upon the service desk with ITSM features like CMDB systems and business intelligence platforms can go a long way toward promoting greater visibility.
A few key ways that ITSM investments can fuel transparency include:
1. Advanced reporting
ITSM suites don't just feature stats and data about the service desk and IT configuration. Instead, ITSM tools can feature business intelligence solutions that perform reporting deep dives that gather the most useful data possible. Furthermore, these tools boast visualization techniques that make it easier to clearly understand what the data is telling you about the organization's service management and IT capabilities.
2. Audit trails
Having clear documentation of what processes have been completed, when they were taken care of and who did them is a key component to ensuring efficient IT operations. However, auditing IT processes has become even more important as organizations are constantly working to comply with regulatory standards and verify that their procedural methods to ensure compliance are being applied by workers. Audits aren't just valuable as a way of ensuring policies are being followed, they also provide a key defense when it comes time to prove compliance to a governing body.
3. Change advisory boards
Implementing sophisticated change management platforms often involves building a change advisory board. A CAB is a group of technology and business leaders that work together to guide change decisions, authorize changes when they are in process and evaluate operations after the event. The result is much more oversight and better business-IT alignment within organizations.
Becoming more transparent in IT is critical as technology teams face new management and regulatory challenges. Sophisticated ITSM processes can prove vital in unlocking transparency without sacrificing operational efficiency.