At the FUSION 2013 conference, the annual and key conference for IT service management professionals, research company Forrester came to the conclusion that 2013 has been the breakout year for SaaS in IT service management. As a leader in the SaaS ITSM space, we decided to give our predictions for how the SaaS trend will continue in service desk in 2014.
Service Management will become all about people.
1. Consumerization of IT will continue in full force
Consumerization of IT was given full attention in 2013, so it might seem a bit redundant to point out that it will continue. If you’re still not too sure what it means, ZDNet has a great section on BYOD and consumerization. In reality, it’s essential to address the phenomenon once again: the process is finally reaching the service desk big time, and will continue to spread its influence across enterprises everywhere. The rest of our predictions, in one way or another, hinge on its continuation. The fundamental takeaway is that companies will soon expect to use tools that focus on their employees as people rather than users, and the Service Desk will be no exception.
This will mean that companies will start looking for added efficiencies by providing all employees with a single place to go for all service requests – from any device, any place, and for whatever assistance. The modern service desk software will not be constricted by its IT functions, and will increasingly be purchased and consumed outside of IT. Departments across the enterprise will realize the benefits of being able to quickly and easily create service catalogs and workflows that will address any service request.
We predict that IT leaders will be championing this cause as they come to realize that service request management can be moved into the hands of their internal consumers, without having to give up oversight and security control.
2. Software will become smarter
Service management will become smarter in 2014. It will have more predictive capabilities: it will be smarter about helping you complete your day to day tasks, know what information you need for each decision, and present everything in the most intuitive way. Basically, software will be better at making your job easier.
We predict that smart software that exists in other domains, such as Google’s search capabilities will find its way to the service desk. You will no longer have to search for multiple sources of data to take action, but rather your software will take data from 3rd party sites and analyze it for you. Your service desk software will be able to index and organize all your information, and make it readily available in a way that will make incident resolution faster and more efficient.
3. The real-time, social IT service desk
The next generation web applications will be all about real-time. If the “old web” was about browsing through pages and loading HTML sites, the new web is about real-time apps that display data, which is always up-to-date and does not require a page refresh. Examples? think Facebook or Twitter. You can expect your service desk to become real-time very soon.
In general, service desk software will start to take on the look and feel of social apps we all use. We already know the benefits of a more social service desk are extensive, and we think that soon everyone will catch on and service desk software will finally become truly social. The new focus will become the employee – service desk personnel from different parts of the organization will instantly be able to see who each person is, what device they use, what their travel patterns are, what their service history is, etc.
We expect this change will benefit both service givers and receivers, as it will allow for quicker responses and reduced workloads. Service desk workers will be able to track activities and service requests in the same way they use Facebook. Pertinent information will be fed in real-time with the most important information prioritized in the feed. All this will be coupled with more powerful collaboration tools like a knowledge base or service catalog.
4. User experience will rule
We’ve spoken before about how user interface (a small part of user experience) is affecting service and asset management in enterprises: both about the changes in what users want to use at work as well as how IT can handle which devices to support. Essentially, the enhanced influence of consumerization will mean that people get to choose what they want to use and how they want their interactions to look like – IT service will transform to their standards or flail.
We expect changes will emerge as more easy to use technology, that is often updated with no hassle to the users. People don’t want to work hard to understand how to use their tools, so solutions that require as little as possible training or manuals will come out on top. Service desk software will have new requirements, and among the most important will be look and feel.