IT Service Management in the Cloud

By Dick Stark

Last Thursday, I attended a panel discussion sponsored by the National Capital Area itSMF user group.  The topic: IT Service Management in the Cloud. Paul Alberti, from FEMA’s Office of the CIO, led  the discussion with representatives from BMC, ServiceNow, and Cherwell. This impressive group discussed service management SaaS solutions for government agencies. Katie Tierney, BMC ITSM Strategist reported that according to Gartner, 75% of service management implementations will be in the cloud by 2015. Here is a summary of the sessions.

BMC. Katie opened with a story about her search for a new car.  While she’d really like to have a new Shelby GT, her family requirements dictated a more practical SUV. “One size does not fit all,” said Katie, “and organizations shouldn’t have to be forced to shoe-horn Remedy into a place it doesn’t fit.” Choice matters, so BMC offers Private Cloud and Public Cloud solutions, e.g., Remedy-on-Demand (RoD), and Remedyforce.

Remedyforce is built on the Salesforce force.com platform (Salesforce, a technology cloud giant where more than 125 million users processes a billion transactions per day.) Remedyforce is scalable and secure, supporting FISMA moderate with multiple ATO’s. ATO means authority to proceed. A government agency can grant ATO based upon compliance with the FISMA security framework.

RoD is offered for private or public clouds.  For example, CSC is hosting RoD at DHS as a private cloud rollout. Katie closed with a short overview of MyIT which BMC invented to improve the end-user’s IT experience.

Cherwell. Michael Santos, Solution Consultant pointed out Cherwell is one of the top three ITSM SaaS solutions in the world and is the youngest of all companies in the Gartner Service Support management Tools quadrant. They are a private company with about 150 employees. Michael said that Cherwell Service management (CSM) is the only ITSM solution that provides an enterprise-level application development platform at a mid-market price without programming resources. CSM is available in a SaaS and on-premise version.

ServiceNow (SNOW). Doug Ligenfelter, Federal Sales Director described progress at agencies such as GSA, NIH, DOE, NIST, and Walter Reed. Doug is making “hay” now with some Remedy accounts running old versions.  Due to the “recession” hitting the government, he is showing cost saving by moving off legacy Remedy and onto the SNOW platform.

SNOW is growing rapidly with $243M in sales in FY2012.  They now offer 26 applications on a single platform with no acquisitions.  All development work has been organic. Doug was most proud of the progress made towards security compliance. He said that ServiceNow is the only ITSM solution with a GSA issued and administered Government wide FISMA moderate ATO. Doug made no bones about ServiceNow’s single-tenancy approach.  Each customer has a dedicated virtual server()which allows for unique personalizations by account.

SNOW is the up-and-comer and is winning against BMC—a monumental wake-up call. But, there is hope as Remedyforce gets better and better.  And even more exciting, FootPrints v12 will be released before the end of the year, with a hosted offering by RightStar and Rackspace!

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About dick1stark

I am the President, CEO, and founder of RightStar Systems, a leading IT consultancy and BMC Software Solution Provider and Atlassian Expert Partner. My passion is customer success—whether it’s reducing the cost of service management, improving overall efficiency, or increasing end-user or employee satisfaction. Since founding RightStar in 2003, RightStar has made the INC 5000 list four times. In 2011, RightStar was awarded the prestigious National Capital Business Ethics Award (NCBEA) by the Society of Financial Service Professionals based upon RightStar’s foundation of honesty, ethics, and integrity. And in 2014, RightStar was selected by Forrester Research as one of 13 North American companies profiled in its ITSM Consultancy Wave Report. Finally, in 2016, BMC selected RightStar as its 2015 Supplier of the Year for its consulting partnership and excellence in service delivery. Dick is a graduate of Stanford University and a Project Management Professional (PMP).
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