There are loads of IT Service Management platforms out there. (Cherwell, anyone?) Software vendors will tell you their ITSM platform is perfect in every way (it isn’t) and that it will be the “game changer” for your organization (without good processes and training, it won’t).We were a tool agnostic consulting firm for a while, and dealt on numerous occasions with customers who had selected a less-than-ideal Service Desk/ITSM platform after succumbing to the oohs and aahs of a slick software demo; They now needed us to jump in save what had become a failing implementation. I can almost hear the frustration now, “What do you mean it’s going to take a month to build that? It looked so easy (and/or it was already built out) in the demo system!” Frankly, those kinds of projects are no fun at all.
Prior to working at BEYOND20, I worked as a Project Manager for a number of large organizations selecting and implementing these kinds of platforms, so I know firsthand the importance of getting it right the first time. ITSM platforms are not cheap (especially if you’re starting with only a few processes like Incident, Problem, and Change Management), and it takes a lot of time and effort to get people trained and used to a new system. It’s a labor-intensive process that exactly no one is excited to have to go through every few years.
You often have one shot to get people excited about using a new platform like this. If you’re not careful, people will get frustrated with the new platform (sometimes it’s the tool’s fault, sometimes it’s not), blame it, then blame IT Service Management in general: “We tried ITIL, and it was a colossal failure.” It’s extremely difficult to change people’s minds after they have a bad taste for an ITSM platform. All the more reason to get it right the first time.
Anyway, back to my story: We eventually got sick of the “save us from our tool” scenario and decided to align ourselves with an ITSM platform we could wholeheartedly recommend to customers and help them put in place along with good processes and training (don’t forget, you need all three – It’s not just about the platform). Here are two of the key reasons we picked Cherwell as both our ITSM software partner and for our own internal use:
- Their corporate philosophy closely aligns with our own. They are a great group of people with a clear and noble vision who truly care about and listen to their customers. Plus, the entire company is passionate about IT Service Management and serious about continual improvement and training. They use Cherwell internally to do everything from managing invoices to managing the Service Desk (surprisingly, not all ITSM platform vendors do), and nearly 100% of their staff – from developers to sales & marketing staff – is ITIL Foundations certified (most ITSM platform vendors can’t say that, either). As a small business, we wholeheartedly believe who you buy from – and what they stand for – matters.
- They have innovative, flexible, and (dare I say it) affordable technology – As a prior customer myself, what I cared about were things like, “Can our organization grow with this product?” meaning am I going to have to go back to my boss next year and say, “I know we spent a ton of time and money rolling out this ITSM platform, but this product doesn’t do what we now need (or the vendor promised us it would do), and we are going to need to spend more money to roll out other features or buy something better.” That was always my nightmare situation. I also had to look at, “Am I going to find gotchas after I buy this thing?” – i.e. customer support is terrible, upgrades are painful and any customizations we do will become problematic, or additional features (like reporting) or ITIL processes cost more money. Give me something easy to configure, deploy, support, and grow with – simple as that. We think Cherwell does all of those things exceptionally well, and we are happy to show you an honest demo of what the platform can do.
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