ITSM for Uncle Bill

We all get the question at family gatherings: “So, exactly what is it that you do?” In the past, I would struggle with answering the follow-up question: “What the heck is IT Service Management?”

I can easily bottom-line the benefit and value; it’s a challenge to get in the weeds of tools and terminology.

Those who have faced the challenge of going step-by-step through the different elements of ITSM know that it can quickly become tedious. Discussing core elements such as fault/performance, importance of a CMDB, trouble ticketing, asset, change/config, and eventually high-end dashboards just doesn’t hold the attention of Aunt Judy very long. And it can lead to more questions than answers leaving poor Aunt Judy even more confused.

So what is ITSM and how do we explain it to the politely curious Aunt Judy?

The answer is as simple as the subject is complicated. IT has become critical to companies and they want constant reassurance that their IT is up and running. Companies build complex IT infrastructures with hardware and applications to support/streamline their business operations. Services such as websites, credit card systems, and shipping operations are all enabled by IT.

ITSM is the means to monitor and manage these business critical applications/systems. Companies are heavily invested in business-critical IT; it’s prudent and wise to invest in a system to monitor IT performance, quickly identify the cause of problems, and prevent issues.

So Aunt Judy, “what is ITSM”? Well, if you ran a company, ITSM lets you look at one screen to see the status of all your IT systems. You’ll know if those systems are doing what you want and you can prevent a lot of problems. Of course, my Aunt Judy would say, “you need to make a husband version, let me tell you what your Uncle Bill did last week...”

Jon Martin

Mid Atlantic Territory Manager