Contact ITInvolve
x 


Archive for December, 2012

2012 – What a year for ITinvolve and Social IT!

Monday, December 31st, 2012

By all accounts, this has been an amazing year for ITinvolve and social IT collaboration.

First, we delivered three product releases that are changing the IT Management industry. In late February, we introduced ITinvolve for Social Knowledge Management, moving the industry beyond traditional CMDBs and knowledge articles with the innovation of social knowledge objects, role and user-based perspectives, active knowledge delivery, and in-context collaboration. In May, we expanded our offering by adding a fully-capable Change Management application that is built on our Social Knowledge Management foundation and delivers new innovations for change risk assessment weigh-in, impact factors, virtual Change Advisory Boards, and more. Then, in September, we released our biggest solution yet with ITinvolve for Service Management, which brings full Service Desk, Incident, Request, and Problem Management into the social IT collaboration era with new innovations for collaborative incident triage, virtual channels, and more.

These social IT innovations go beyond mere bolt-on capabilities like tweeting IT service status or a singular new feed. Be sure to check out the thought leadership whitepaper, What is your Social IT Maturity?, that we delivered this Fall. In this paper, we propose a four-level model for Social IT maturity and put the bolt-on capabilities in context with respect to their limited value and risks, and explain how the real breakthroughs from social IT will come from in-context, embedded social collaboration with a trusted, peer reviewed social knowledge management system underpinning it. We also released the industry’s first Social IT Maturity Assessment tool allowing you to benchmark your current social IT maturity in just 10 minutes and get practical advice on how to move to the next step in your social IT journey.

Second, 2012 was our first year to sign up customers, an outstanding group of companies and IT organizations from industries as diverse as government, manufacturing, hospitality, legal and financial services, education, and software. Each of these companies is harnessing the power of the collective knowledge of their teams and fostering new levels of collaboration to drive improvements in IT performance metrics such as mean-time-to-restore-service (MTRS), change success rate, and incident resolution time. What’s more, each of these organizations is demonstrating leadership in their respective industry by moving beyond traditional IT process management with social IT collaboration.

Third, the innovations ITinvolve delivered this year have not gone unnoticed by industry analysts and thought leaders alike. Check out these reports by Enterprise Management Associates, IDC, and Ovum Research as well as these recent news articles on APM Digest and ITSM Review.

Finally, this year was a great year for ITinvolve’s employee base as we grew from the initial founding team to a full-fledged company with experienced team members focused on all aspects of our business from R&D to marketing, sales, professional services, and more.  We also demonstrated at itSMF/HDI Fusion 2012 that IT management doesn’t need to be stuffy or stodgy, and that IT people like to do business with those who are both seriously committed to what they do and also enjoy doing it!

As we look back at 2012, it truly was a great year for ITinvolve and Social IT! If you’re already an ITinvolve customer, thank you for your business and for putting your confidence in us. And if you aren’t a customer yet, we look forward to showing you how social IT collaboration is the next big breakthrough in IT management.

Matthew Selheimer
Vice President, Marketing

SocialIT offers a competitive advantage you can’t ignore

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Of the all the reasons cited so far in this series of why Social IT is essential to IT operations, number five may be the most compelling:  You need Social IT to fully leverage and exploit IT for competitive advantage

If your business growth and competitive success requires faster delivery of new services to customers, better performance and availability of those services, and an efficient use of capital and human resources, Social IT offers a powerful solution to help get you there.  Social collaboration methods and practices have become critical to providing this kind of competitive advantage:

  • Social IT offers a more effective and efficient means to manage the IT environment as professionals collaborate across technology and process silos.
  • Social IT creates an environment where IT professionals can excel and innovate based on methodologies they understand and use on a daily basis in the workplace.
  • Social IT delivers management efficiencies that change the current cost paradigm, enabling IT operations to re-allocate resources to more valuable, strategic initiatives.
  • Social IT provides the means to retain and access expert collective knowledge so it can be utilized again and again.

IT organizations today have to do more than just acknowledge the new world of social media and collaboration.  They have to embrace it.  You can learn how by visiting our web site at www.itinvolve.com and learn more by downloading the white paper “Five Reasons Why Social IT is Essential to Your IT Organization.”

Logan Wray, CEO

Don’t let hard earned IT knowledge walk out the door.

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

How many times have you faced a situation where you’ve lost a key IT team member to an internal transfer or they leave the company and sorely miss their expertise in a crisis? Which brings us to reason number four in our series on why Social IT is essential to the success of IT operations: SocialIT offers the best way to preserve critical knowledge when staff moves on.

That’s because Social IT knowledge management solutions can guarantee an environment where knowledge is not only shared but retained and augmented over time. So, when one of your employees transfers or leaves, their battle-tested know-how can be passed on to others within the organization, ensuring that precious knowledge captured over the course of their employment is preserved and available to team members.

As social collaboration solutions take their rightful place in IT operations, IT executives and managers will no longer have to accept losing valuable knowledge when an employee leaves the company. Instead, the hard earned lessons of yesterday do not have to be re-learned tomorrow and IT productivity and effectiveness can be maintained.

Want to learn more? Just visit our web site and download our new white paper “Five Reasons Why Social IT is Essential to Your IT Organization.”

Logan Wray, CEO

SocialIT can be your pathway to innovation

Monday, December 24th, 2012

Today I’m focusing on reason number three in our series on why Social IT is essential to the success of IT operations: Social IT paves the way to innovation by greasing the wheels of collaboration

Despite all efforts to the contrary, IT organizations today still spend an awful lot of time simply trying to maintain their systems. At the end of the day there is little left over for innovation or the exploration of new ideas on how IT can contribute to improving the business.

Social IT can help free IT professionals to go beyond putting out fires and keeping heads above water. By capturing, sharing, and leveraging knowledge through the use of Wikipedia-style crowd-sourcing and Twitter or Facebook-style news feeds, IT teams are more efficient and can innovate based on the collective contributions of their colleagues. When you understand Social IT as the enhancement of traditional IT processes with in-context collaboration to improve efficiency and accuracy of IT decision-making and actions, you see clearly how this approach can make everyone far more productive.

Done right, SocialIT has the power to transform IT operations and usher in a new era of collaboration and streamlined decision making—so we as IT professionals can go beyond day-to-day, routine tasks and realize our full potential. If you want to learn more, download our new white paper “Five Reasons Why Social IT is Essential to Your IT Organization.”

Logan Wray, CEO

 

Why Social IT is Essential – Reason #2

Friday, December 21st, 2012

Here is reason number two in our series on why Social IT is essential to the success of IT operations: Social collaboration is the norm for the new generation of workers—including IT professionals.

Social IT will increasingly serve as the currency for the new generation of IT professionals. The reasoning is simple; college graduates entering the workforce today have literally grown up in a socially enabled world. In hiring these more socially enabled workers, IT management will find these new team members will expect and eagerly embrace social tools for communication and collaboration in the workplace.

Not only will IT professionals be social media savvy, they will increasingly expect to have knowledge delivered to them automatically and in the context of their role in order to do their jobs and make decisions knowingly and without delay. The use of social media and technologies will only be reinforced as employers continue efforts to reduce costs associated with physical real estate, and more employees are located outside a headquarters building and “telecommute” to the office.

These trends in the work environment require solutions that can automatically deliver knowledge and enable collaboration in-context, instantaneously, anywhere at any time. Mobile access combined with off-site working arrangements will require that current processes take advantage of new communication methods and information sources to enable workers to perform their daily duties more productively.

In summary, your IT teams and stakeholders already expect you to be social savvy.  It will be up to you to determine how best to meet and exceed those expectations.

Want to learn more? Just visit our web site and download our new white paper “Five Reasons Why Social IT is Essential to Your IT Organization.”

Logan Wray, CEO

Why Social IT is Essential – Reason # 1

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

A recent Gartner report talks about the nexus of four forces that are having a profound impact on IT these days: Social, Mobile, Cloud, and Information. At ITinvolve, we are convinced that the social force has enormous potential to impact IT operations and will be essential to delivering significant improvements in collaboration and productivity, which have been sought by so many IT leaders for years.  This next series of blogs will explore the five key reasons why we believe Social IT is essential to IT Ops.

The first reason Social IT is essential has to do with the way people capture and use the combined wisdom of a group to enable better decision-making and improve daily operations.  Capturing human knowledge is especially important for IT environments that have become more complex, more distributed, and often harder to understand. The key knowledge necessary for the successful management of the IT environment is often scattered, often not fully known, and frequently exists only in people’s heads. This raises the risk that errors or omissions can occur and makes the benefits of capturing and leveraging collective knowledge quite valuable.

Social IT offers a way to put collective knowledge to work by collecting it through a system of “social objects” and then promoting collaboration among IT professionals in the context of issues and problems they are assigned to or care about. From a service management perspective, a trusted source of knowledge about the IT environment – servers, applications, network devices, etc. and even incidents, changes, and problems themselves – combined with effective collaboration, has the potential to dramatically reduce risk and improve IT employee productivity. For example, understanding impacts of changes across the environment from a policy, people, business service, and virtual/physical relationship perspective combined with effective notification and approval processes, would substantially reduce the risks associated with making changes as well as improve change execution performance metrics.

Bottom line; Social IT is essential because it offers a more effective way for us to capture human knowledge and put it to work for ourselves and our businesses.  If you want to learn more, download our new white paper “Five Reasons Why Social IT is Essential to Your IT Organization.”

 

Logan Wray, CEO

Have existing ITSM architectures become obsolete? According to Gartner, they just may be

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

This past year, Gartner introduced a new concept called the “Nexus of Forces” consisting of four forces — Social, Mobile, Cloud, and Information.  These forces, according to Garner, are converging, helping to transform user behavior while creating new business opportunities. As IT becomes more consumerized with nearly every working professional having a mobile smartphone or tablet, IT organizations are challenged to keep pace with rapidly evolving expectations and environments.

In the Nexus of Forces, Gartner maintains that information serves as the context for delivering enhanced social and mobile experiences, while mobile devices provide the platform for effective social networking and new ways of working together. Social forces are linking people to their work and each other in new and unexpected ways, while the Cloud enables delivery of information and functionality to systems and users. All these forces combine and reinforce each other to create what Gartner calls “a user-driven ecosystem of modern computing.”

If you are Gartner client, you can read more in research ID:G00234840.  In reading the report, one of its predictions stood out for me: “Techno-centrism gives way to human-centered design” and that “as the technology matures..simpler, more effective ways of doing things are developed”.

At ITinvolve, these are precisely the key principles that our company and products are founded on.  We’ve developed ITinvolve for Service Management as a cloud service from the ground up, building in new ways of facilitating and managing the social nature of information, knowledge and decision making among IT stakeholders. As Gartner observes, sharing comments, links, and recommendations with friends shouldn’t just take place in our personal lives but should also be “among colleagues about progress of a project or which supplier provides good value.”  At ITinvolve, we’ve applied this lesson in offering a better way to manage your IT environment and processes.

ITinvolve offers you a next generation IT Service Management solution that is powered by the collective knowledge of your teams and is, at its core, social and collaborative.  As Gartner rightly points out “…people actually like using social functionality.”  When was the last time you or anyone on your team said, “I like using our ITSM solution”?  With ITinvolve, you can make that a reality.  To see how, register for one our free webinars co-sponsored by Pink Elephant and get a demonstration of how the Social IT can work for you.

I’ll be exploring more of the how and why techno centrism is giving way to more human-centered ways of conducting IT operations in the weeks ahead. Stay tuned.

Matthew Selheimer,
Vice President, Marketing

Social Driven IT marks the pinnacle of your Social IT Maturity evolution

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Achieving level three in the social IT maturity model—Social Embedding is no small task.  By the time you reach Level 3, you’ve managed to create a social object model for your IT organization and introduce a social knowledge management system that enables you to embed social collaboration functionality into IT operations to dramatically improve your process efficiency.

To move to the highest level of social IT maturity, Level 4 – Social Driven, means that your IT organization must become even more adept at leveraging social collaboration, and be able to benchmark your IT process KPIs against that of other organizations.  At this final stage of social IT maturity, you should be striving to outperform any organization that is not leveraging social collaboration principles, and you should be performing at or above the level of those peer organizations that have also adopted social collaboration principles.

At maturity Level 4, you will have established a self-sustaining community that is actively leveraging the social knowledge management system as part of its day-to-day work.  And you’ll be measuring value in terms of behavioral change in your organization. Metcalf’s law applies directly to social collaboration: The “network effect” increases the value of the social knowledge management system exponentially as you add users to the community.

By now you should be anxious to learn much more about the Social IT Maturity model.  Download the free white paper  to get an in-depth look each of the four maturity levels and gain insights into how social IT can evolve in your organization.

Then take the next step to assess your own Social IT Maturity level by taking a short survey online.  You will get an immediate assessment of where you’re at in your Social IT journey.

Finally, be sure to register for one of our free webinars in December and January co-sponsored by Pink Elephant to get an explanation of how the Social IT Maturity model works.  You’ll also see a demonstration of our ITinvolve for Service Management solution that is transforming the way IT professionals are leveraging social IT to manage changes, resolve incidents and problems and collaborate to make better decisions.  The journey to Social IT maturity will deliver the next big breakthrough in IT performance and productivity—we invite you to join us in leading the way.

Matthew Selheimer
Vice President of Marketing

Social Embedding is key to improving IT performance at Level 3 in your Social IT Maturity evolution

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

After discussing levels one and two of the Social IT Maturity model in my previous blogs, I want to explain the next level of maturity – Level 3: Social Embedding.   Moving beyond Social Exploration and Social Add-ons (Levels 1 and 2) to Social Embedding (Level 3) requires establishing relevant context for social collaboration activities through three specific actions:

  1. The creation of a social object model
  2. The construction of a social knowledge management system that is both role-based and user-specific
  3. The enhancement of established IT processes with social collaboration functionality to improve process efficiency

Your goal at Level 3 maturity is to leverage social embedding to measurably improve IT key performance indicators (KPIs) such as mean-time-to-restore (MTTR) service or change success rate. You should select KPIs that are most meaningful to your organization; KPIs that you have already baselined and can use to track your progress in achieving social IT maturity. While the value of Level 2 maturity can be significant in improving the perception of IT’s responsiveness to users, Level 3 social IT maturity is where you can gain big breakthroughs in IT efficiency and quantifiable business value.

A Word of Caution:  When embedding social IT into your operations, be sure you are targeting and engaging specific audiences. Some vendors offer a Facebook-like wall in addition to the ability to push updates out via Twitter or RSS. In addition to the exposure risk discussed in my last blog, this type of “shotgun” approach to social IT can create a tremendous amount of noise, which will make it difficult for both business users and IT to identify useful information in the feed or on the wall.

You can learn more about the Social IT Maturity model by downloading the free white paper. It explains each of the four maturity levels and offers insights into how social IT should evolve in your organization.

You can also register for one of our free webinars co-sponsored by Pink Elephant to get a demonstration of how the Social IT Maturity model works—including a Level 3 social knowledge management system.

If you’re sufficiently intrigued, you can also assess your own Social IT Maturity level by taking a short survey online that will give you an immediate benchmark of where you’re at in your social IT journey.  Coming next:  Level 4 – Social Driven IT.

Matthew Selheimer
Vice President of Marketing