My name is Wendy
Whalen and Ill be posting entries to this IBM Service Management blog on a
regular basis. Part of the Tivoli Communications team, I edit IBM Service Provider
News, among other things. I came to Tivoli
in 2006 by way of the Micromuse (Netcool)
acquisition (and to Muse in 2005 via its Quallaby (Proviso)
Who cares about some Tele-Something Something event on the
French Riviera? Well, many service providers using Tivoli Netcool and Vallent
solutions do, for starters. That would be telcos, wireless operators, cable and
multi-service operators , etc. TMF is THE major industry organization for CSPs.
So about Nice in May: The Forum announced its 2008 Award
Winners, divided into seven categories. We were entered in the Best Practices
for Suppliers category. And oh yeah, we won. For our eTOM customization and
real world application for T-Com
Croatia - beating out AMDOCS, HP, Netcracker and two entries from Telecordia.
We also announced that Canadian CSP
TELUS recently selected ReachView,
company, to implement a solution based on IBM Tivoli Netcool software.This
deployment makes TELUS Alcatel-Lucent's 100th customer to use Tivoli Netcool
Welcome to the IBM Service Management blog.A variety of authors who represent different
parts of IBM will discuss a range of Service Management topics such as service
availability and performance, green IT, IT asset and financial management, IT
governance, service delivery and process, storage management, SOA management,
enterprise asset management, and service assurance for service providers.
We'll discuss industry trends and happenings, analyst
perspectives, new product and solution announcements, support and services
offerings, upcoming events, helpful resources, and heroes in the broader IBM
Service Management network. This blog provides multi-directional communication
with the public, and we encourage and look forward to your feedback, thoughts,
and questions. For extended sharing, check out our new IBM Service Management community.
I'm Tiffany Winman, the
IBM Service Management community and social media program manager, and my blog
topics tend to focus on communities, people, companies, heroes, and stories in
the broader Service Management and Tivoli "ecosystem" and the use of innovative social
technologies to facilitate online social networking and collaboration. When I'm
not blogging on group blogs such as Service Management, Tivoli, Pulse, and Web 2.0 Goes to Work,
you can join me in riveting conversation ;) on my individual blog.
us know if you have any questions or we can assist in any way.
I have some big news to share. You thought world tours were only reserved for the Stones, Springsteen and other big-name acts? Well, I guess service management has hit the big time, because the IBM Service Management World Tour kicks off in mid-August with gigs across the U.S., Europe and Asia.
I think this is a perfect follow-on to Pulse a merry band of IBM experts comes to a town near you (hopefully) and delivers in-depth presentations on the latest IBM solutions and approaches in service management, storage management, enterprise asset management, and System z. Its a series of hard-hitting one-day events held in smaller settings where you can get some serious face-to-face time with service management gurus. Im helping one such expert with his presentations on the Tivoli Service Management Center for z and consolidating Linux workloads on z (no snappy title yet), and Im impressed with his focus and clarity.Even I get it!By the way, if you missed my profile, thats what I do, write presentations, podcasts and website stories for Tivoli.
Anyway, the tour begins in Boston on August 12, with events in 13 more US cities; the Europe and Asia schedules are being finalized now. You can check out what we have so far and even register for the road show at the World Tour page. You can always ping your favorite IBM sales rep, who is sitting by his/her laptop yearning to hear from you, or ping me, Bob Pickard. In any event, I'll be blogging new news on the tour as it comes along. Party on, Garth.
The excitement and amazing performances at the 2008 Beijing Olympics bring to mind the importance of getting a great start "off the blocks." Whether you're Michael Phelps, striving for your record eighth gold medal in a single Olympic games, or Usain Bolt smashing the world records in both the 100-meter and 200-meter sprints, how you start is often the difference between gold and silver, between winning and not.
Similarly, getting a great start with IBM Service Management can help our clients deliver gold medal service quality with surprising speed. We've all talked to our clients about how IBM service management enables them to deliver quality service, operational efficiency and innovation through visibility, control, and automation. Our clients "get it," yet many of them face the same challenge: "How can we get started?"
To help you answer that question and get your clients off to that fast start that they're looking for, we've developed the IBM service management entry points. The entry points are documented "starter projects" based on actual customer usage and previous implementation experiences. IBM Service Management professionals worked extensively with customers and key industry analysts to create this set of five entry points that, upon completion, minimize time to value and achieve practical business benefits.
The five IBM Service Management entry points are:
Discover: Understanding infrastructure and business dependencies Monitor: Tracking infrastructure health and compliance Protect: Ensuring infrastructure security and resilience against threats and disaster Industrialize: Streamlining workflows and processes for repeatable, scalable and consistent results Integrate: Aligning and integrating IT and business operations and objectives for optimal impact
Be sure catch the replay of the August 26 IBM Service Management Jam webcast, "Where to Begin: The Five Entry Points" featuring Zarina Stanford, Director, Tivoli Marketing. Zarina discusses how implementing one or more of the entry point projects can help clients get a great start "off the blocks" and address with urgency the high priorities of cost reduction and operational inefficiencies, improving their service quality and positioning themselves not only in the lead, but with the absolute best chance to win.
FYI, the recent IBM Service Management Jam on Cloud Computing, "Cloud Computing: Innovation that drives IT and operations efficiencies" is the #1 most popular of the 41 Jams aired to date.
Cloud Computing Jam link: http://bit.ly/9mt8N
Jams page link: http://bit.ly/ultmC
Learn all about the latest strategies and smarter software for design and development innovation through next generation service delivery from the Integrated Service Management track at Innovate 2010, June 6-10. The Integrated Service Management track at Innovate is a continuation of the discussion and training of the Software Delivery Lifecycle Management stream at Pulse 2010, which showcased how clients, IBM and IBM Business Partners use software delivery lifecycle management solutions to help realize greater value from software investments and optimize business outcomes at reduced cost and risk.
The Integrated Service Management track kickoff will be hosted by Jamie Thomas, Vice President of Tivoli Strategy and Development, formerly of worldwide development, client support and product management for the Rational software brand. Jamie will be joined by Bala Rajaraman, Distinguished Engineer, IBM Software, Tivoli and John Wiegand, Distinguished Engineer, Rational Analysis, Design and Construction.
At Innovate 2010, IBM clients and partners will learn innovative approaches to optimizing the service lifecycle, driving better efficiencies and lowering their TCO. Attendees of the Integrated Service Management track will also learn how to leverage the existing tight integrations with Rational solutions. Specifically, clients can find out how to:
Speed up the deployment processes and maximize resource utilization with automation solutions
Reduce cost and improve efficiency with Visibility and Automation brought about by the integration of Rational and Tivoli
Fully realize the benefits of newer technologies such as virtualization, cloud etc in the dev and test processes that will improve TCO and efficiency
Create a robust dev and test processes that will have minimal chances of failure and cause an outage
What is IBM Tivoli Software? We know you want the short version. Steven Wright of Tivoli Software breaks it all down for us in less than 7 minutes on a white grease board. Check it out while you have your morning coffee, afternoon tea, or while you get your miles in on the treadmill or trail with your smart phone. Then visit ibm.com/software/tivoli for more details on how IBM Tivoli Software can help you run a smarter business. .
Last week, IBM announced an enhancement to our cloud portfolio that will deliver CloudBurst on POWER7-based hardware, as well as offering it as software that can run on currently installed IBM and non-IBM systems.
With CloudBurst, IBM is tying together the hardware, storage, networking, virtualization, and service management as an all-in-one package for enterprises to build a private cloud. This is significant because it removes the arduous manual processes that in-house IT departments often face when configuring and managing their cloud systems.
In the press release, IBM states that it estimates CloudBurst's automated configuring capabilities "can cut IT staff's labor in integrating systems, provisioning and managing storage up to 95 percent." That seems pretty impressive, when you consider that if I could cut 95% off of my work week, I'd be logged on for a total of two and a half hours.
At the heart of this new offering is the IBM Service Delivery Manager, a stand-alone integrated service management software bundle which automates the deployment, monitoring and management of a cloud solution on IBM or non-IBM hardware.
If you'd like to delve into the details behind these solutions, and understand how to decrease your costs and increase your efficiency with CloudBurst, you can contact your IBM sales rep and/or Business Partner (Business Partner Locator Site).
It started out a bit frenetic and confusing. Nobody knew what to do or where to go, and panic seemed to set in every time the loud horn blared, indicating another failure had occurred.
No, I wasn't attending a Green Mountain Derby Dames roller derby tournament.
Rather, I was present at an ISM Simulator Workshop session in Washington DC.
My role was to videotape the workshop, with the intent of scaling it down into a 2-3 minute snippet that captures the essence of the session. And as I observed the 16 participants in 'Round 1', it all started to make sense.
The participants were playing the roles of employees at a hypothetical shipping company. They were broken out into four teams, representing four different parts of the company - senior management, line of business owners, service desk personnel
and technical services.
On the screen at the front of the room was a birds-eye projection of the company, including a series of dashboards and schedules, which provided the participants with essential real-time information such as service level data, shipments completed, locations where outages were occurring, and the amount of money that the company was making (or losing!) at any given moment.
The goal of the 'game' was to maximize profits for the company in the face of systems that were continuously breaking down. To do so, each team had to establish its own processes, and effectively collaborate with the other teams so as to create an efficient overall system.
The first round was anything but efficient, as the teams tried desperately to get their own houses in order while they watched all the missed shipments, unresolved outages, and lost revenue on the screen. The sense of frustration was obvious, but the group pressed on.
At the end of the round, the facilitator conducted an assessment of the business by reviewing bottom line data with the group, and discussed best and worst practices that the teams had implemented. Clearly, there was a better way to run this business, and the group was determined to figure it out in short order.
Somewhere in the middle of Round 2, I began to sense that the group was turning the corner. There were a lot more 'aha" moments, a lot less shouting across the room, flip charts were being utilized, and there seemed to be a great deal of relevant information being shared across the different teams.
After three hours and three rounds, the group was both exhausted and exhilarated. They were able to implement an efficient process that yielded a positive bottom line.
But more importantly, they now had a much more tangible understanding of the role that Service Management plays in aligning IT with the business.
I had a chance to interview several of the participants after the session, and they were all effusive in their praise for the workshop. Clearly, the workshop far exceeded their expectations, and they were anxious to share their experience, and apply some of the best practices at their own organizations.
As a new member of the ISM marketing team, the workshop was also a great experience for me. Besides meeting some very interesting IBM customers and partners, I now have a much firmer grasp of the value of Service Management.
Incidentally, we will be running a simulator workshop for customers at Pulse on Sunday, February 27th. If you are interested in attending, please contact David Ojalvo as soon as possible, because seating is limited to the first 20 respondents.
If you are not able to get with us at Pulse, fear not...the ISM Simulator Workshop is portable in nature, and can be hosted at any customer site for a group of your employees. It's a great educational and team building exercise! For more information on this, visit our web page, and contact your local sales rep.
Next week, I'll be attending my first Pulse conference, and I have a full slate of activities planned:
On Sunday afternoon, I will be participating in our ISM Simulator Workshop session. The workshop facilitator will be our own ITIL 'rock star', Ivor MacFarlane, and the audience will be made up of IBM customers and business partners. The workshop participants are in for a terrific one-of-a-kind interactive learning session that will confuse, frustrate and challenge them. Ultimately, they will come away with a better understanding of how to significantly bring IT services into better alignment with their business goals and strategies. And they'll also come to realize that those goals can be much more easily pursued via enhanced visibility, control, and automation—the overarching themes of the modular approach IBM takes with service management.
On Monday and Tuesday from 11am to noon, I will be attending the Integrated Service Management Simulator Overview breakout session. In this session, you can get a preview of how the simulator highlights the challenges and business value of implementing Service Management best practices, and learn how your organization might benefit from your own team-building and thought-provoking simulator session.
Finally, I will be working at the ISM Virtual Simulator ped in the Best Practices Zone. In this cutting edge video game, you can experience issues affecting service management and corporate profitability in a simulated organization. You will be given the opportunity to run your own business, and will gain a better understanding of challenges facing different people in a company, the value of processes and tools, and how various parts of the company positively and negatively affect the hypothetical company’s performance.
We look forward to seeing you at our breakout session!...and be sure to stop by our ped and get your game on! And if you are not one of the lucky ones attending the workshop, fear not - - we can also conduct a private Simulator Workshop session for your employees, at your site. If you are interested in your own session, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last week, I attended my first IBM Pulse conference. I really enjoyed the sights and sounds of Vegas, and met many of my Tivoli colleagues for the first time. I also probably walked the equivalent of 15 miles over the five days within the mammoth MGM facility. But what I found most valuable over the five days were my interactions with our customers and business partners.
On Day 1 of the conference, my focus was the ISM Simulator workshop that I helped coordinate. Given that the workshop was: a) taking place prior to any other Pulse activities, b) located in the bowels of the MGM hotel, and
c) three hours in duration...
...I was a bit apprehensive that all the customers and business partners who had RSVP'd would actually show up. But when people started rolling in 30 minutes before the start time, I was confident that this workshop was going to be a success.
When we got started, we had 21 participants sitting around four tables, which is all but ideal for this role playing workshop. Like other simulator workshops that I have attended, it started out a bit chaotic, as participants tried to process the firehose of information that was being thrust upon them. By the end of the three hours, they had come full circle, and were effectively working together to the tune of a $5 million profit for their hypothetical shipping company.
As I chatted with some of them after the session, and listened in on some of their video testimonials, the words I heard most often were "eye-opening", "outstanding" and "insightful".
On Monday and Tuesday, I worked on the expo floor and showed off our cool new ISM Simulator video game. The game allowed users to experience various issues affecting service management and corporate profitability in a simulated organization. At the ped, I got great feedback from customers and partners, who, by virtue of playing the game, were able to get a better grasp of the sometimes abstract concepts of service management.
You can play the IBM Service Management Mission game here.
All in all, it was a great conference, and stay tuned for the video from the workshop!
As may have been noticed from recent blogs I
spent most of the last month travelling. Actually thinking about it, most of my
last 33 years has been travelling for work. So while I might spend much of my
time talking about service with IT professionals; the services that most impact
my life tend to be related to the travel industry. Seems to me that service is
service, and many of the lessons learned in travelling – and watching people
while travelling – are very relevant in all aspects of service delivery, IT
related or not.
What has really impressed itself upon my
mind recently is how receiving services – of whatever kind – can so often make
you feel offended, insulted, slighted or just plain angry. Objective thought
makes it pretty obvious that the intention was actually to deliver good
service, but somehow it can be hard to believe that when you see some of the
symptoms of not thinking things through.
Let’s start with a fairly innocuous and
almost silly example from the Dubai
metro system. This metro is brand new, really impressive, fast, clean
comfortable – and cheap. I can forgive its rather early closing time (11pm) and
late start on the weekend as a necessary acknowledgement of how many taxis and
especially taxi drivers need to continue to make a living – and how much they
may have felt threatened by the new metro.
What I couldn’t help but notice, and that
stuck in my mind more than anything else, were the local information maps displayed
– a good and helpful feature that shows important buildings near enough to walk
to from each station. They show where places are using colour-coded dots, for
example pink dots show hotels. At my local station there were three hotel dots
– so I which hotels were served by that metro stop. But it didn’t tell me which
hotels they were – just that they are
hotels – how much more effort would it have taken to write the names on? And
how much would that final piece of data been worth? I think that’s what bothers
me – when suppliers seem to do 90% of the work right but that missing 10%
destroys 90% of the value.
But OK, I am sure that will be remedied -
eventually. There is, however, a characteristic of physically delivered
services that I see so often – and bothers people so much – that I have tried
to give it a name. Best I have so far is VNS,
Non-Service.I am sure you have
seen it – travellers will see it at airline travel desks and immigration
counters, but all of us see it almost daily at banks, post offices and shops.
Let me set out a typical scenario - one I saw last week (and most times I
travel). There are 5 or 6 customer service desks; two of them have staff
serving the waiting line of customers, one by one. At another desk are two of
the airline or airport staff – every now and then a customer in a hurry goes up
to them, only to be turned away. These people are not attending to customers.
No, it might be that they are doing some critically important task, vital
filing, discussing long term business strategy etc. But why do they do it in
font of the customers? We can see only paid supplier staff NOT helping us, and
apparently not caring. Actually, I think banks are amongst the worse offenders,
frequently seating staff at customer facing positions to do non-customer facing
It seems to me that this is a failure to
think through how customers perceive things. Of course it might make perfect
sense to the planners and HR people – making best use of physical space, having
managers where they can see staff working etc. But – if you feel tempted to do
this, or anything else that customers will see - please think through how it
will look and feel to someone who was NOT there when you planned it.
In fact VNS and other ways to disregard customer
perception – once you think it through – have significant implication and
consequences: whether that is IT applications that decide to archive your
records when at times apparently selected to annoy you the most, scheduled
maintenance that seems to target your busy periods or supervisory staff walking
around apparently doing nothing helpful while customers wait in long lines. The
more complex our world gets, the easier it is to get things wrong. Like the maintenance
slot that is obviously good to the planner in New York but which hits the
obvious usage slot in Dubai (where Sunday is the first working day of the week,
and you want your administration services – like expense reporting – up and
running at the start of the week – which is when business travellers typically
do their expenses.
So if you are planning services that a
customer will see, please do me a favour: try and think how it will be seen and
perceived, putting aside how logical YOU already know it is. As the man said –
perception is reality, try to make your customers’ perception into your
Final story, about how it is possible to
get it right. Many years back, when I worked for the UK Forestry Commission, I
recall talking with our Recreation Planning Officer. He had just designed and
constructed some way-marked walks through a forest he personally knew very well.
Before he allowed them to be opened to the public, he brought his children in,
and walked behind them on the route – noting down everywhere they had trouble
seeing the right way – and then he corrected those faults. I believe that
nowadays this might be called ‘User Acceptance Testing’ – and what it needs is
users, not suppliers pretending they can see it from a user perspective.
Now that Pulse is in the rear view mirror, we can focus our attention on INNOVATE, Rational's flagship event for 2011.
Innovate 2011 is the event for software innovation. It is the conference totally focused on helping you transform software innovation and accelerate better business outcomes.
Need another reason to attend Innovate 2011?... You can also take part in the 'Service Management Simulator Experience', a hands-on game focusing on the challenges and business value of implementing Service Management best practices in a realistic and exhilarating scenario. Over the course of a few hours, you'll use gaming and role playing dynamics to mirror the real-world interaction between IT and the business, from both a strategic and operational perspective. In the end, you will come away with an actionable understanding of how the effectiveness of IT processes impacts your business! - For more information, visit the Simulator web page - Check out this 3-minute youtube video from a previous workshop - Read the rave reviews
- To register or if you have questions, send an email to email@example.com
BTW...Readers of this blog may recall that we also conducted a simulator workshop at Pulse this year.
Join us and the Tivoli community at Innovate 2011 – it’s a great opportunity to network with your peers and take away valuable insight that you can use today. If you haven’t yet registered for the conference, you can register here.
Are you looking for a reason to head down to Florida next month?
Tivoli will have a large presence at next month's Innovate2011 conference in Orlando, with over 30 sessions which highlight the Tivoli/Rational integration, and six booths in the solution expo. In addition, you can check out the Tivoli executive speaking engagements including Danny Sabbah (GM, Tivoli Software) at the executive summit presenting on
'Collaborative Development and Operations', Jamie Thomas (VP, Tivoli
Strategy and Development) on organizational agility and efficiency, and
Steve Robinson (GM, IBM Security Solutions) on 'Security in Industries'.
Also, be sure to check out the 'Service Management Simulator Experience' at Innovate, a hands-on role playing game focusing on the challenges and business value of
implementing Service Management best practices in a real life scenario!