It’s no secret that the legacy on-premise IT service management (ITSM) vendors continue to lose market share to the “innovators” – those new providers who offer on-demand or software-as-a-service (SaaS)-based ITSM systems designed for the Web era. Many experts concur that it is these solutions, not the ones sold by the powerhouses, which are more cutting-edge, more user-friendly, and better meet the needs of today’s users.
More and more new customers are choosing SaaS ITSM solutions over on-premise ones for these reasons. Even those organizations who already have an on-premise legacy IT service management tool in place, like BMC Remedy, are tired of the high total cost of ownership and tremendous administrative burden they pose, such as the inevitable upgrade cycle, and are making the switch to modern SaaS ITSM solutions.
BMC Service Desk Express on Force.com
In response to this trend, BMC made a bold move late last year. Instead of expanding their product portfolio through acquisitions, they announced in November that they will, for the first time, attempt to build an IT service desk offering on their own running on Force.com. The newest addition to the BMC product suite will be a version of Service Desk Express, built and delivered in the cloud.
This new application, however, doesn’t effectively address the desire for Remedy customers to move their ITSM environment to a SaaS model. Service Desk Express is designed to meet the needs of smaller organizations. The on-demand version simply is not robust or functional enough to handle the complex IT service management requirements that exist at mid-sized businesses or larger enterprises.
So, what are BMC Remedy customers to do?
BMC Remedy On-Demand is Not SaaS
BMC took its on-demand strategy one step further a couple of years ago, and expanded it earlier this year, by announcing that it would be making its Remedy product available via what they call “a SaaS model”. But, there are significant problems with that approach, and what they are offering is not truly a SaaS solution. Not even close.
For example, unlike other on-demand ITSM software providers who design and create their SaaS software from the ground up and deliver them using a multi-tenant SaaS architecture, BMC is simply taking their existing legacy Remedy application, including the same exact code base, and hosting it with its hosting partners. This is not SaaS.
This method creates some major problems. First, it leaves too many questions regarding performance. Since the software wasn’t designed specifically for SaaS delivery, will it be able to handle the demands placed on it, without comprising availability? And, if performance problems do emerge, then customers won’t truly achieve all the benefits SaaS has to offer.
Secondly, there is the vicious upgrade cycle. With the hosting approach, Remedy customers will still be responsible for upgrading their software to the next release, patching it, and maintaining customizations. Even if these activities are performed by a hosting partner, the customer will still incur the costs, as well as the responsibility to maintain customizations that might be broken during the upgrade. Which means, even though the solution is “on-demand”, TCO will remain quite high.
And, unlike other SaaS solutions, which deliver tremendous productivity improvements, the hosted version of BMC Remedy fails to do so. Why? Because its like putting lipstick on a pig, and customers will still be lacking the usability and simplicity that other pure SaaS solutions offer. So, in essence, the customer just migrated to a “SaaS” offering, but is still using the same product.
BMC Remedy Users Have a New Choice
The fact is, if you’re a company seeking to acquire and deploy a SaaS ITSM system, or you’re an existing on-premise ITSM software user looking to make the switch to on-demand, the best approach you can take is to choose one that was designed from the grounds up as an on-demand product, like Samanage. Additionally, even if a solution is implemented via an on-demand model, you’ll need to make sure that, like Samanage, it offers the ability to tailor the system accordingly, to address your unique processes and needs.