Closed-Loop Change Management

Closed Loop Change Management

A much discussed topic at BMC Engage 2015 last month was Change Management, especially around automation and closure/change acceptance, also known as “closed-loop.” No surprise. Change Management is the most widely implemented process behind Incident Management, and BMC does closed loop better than anyone due to its automation capability and its Blade Logic Server Automation (BBSA) and Performance Assurance (TrueSight) product lines. So, how do organizations move up the maturity curve to take advantage of software capabilities they already own? Here are several case studies.

Liberty Mutual. Ray and Bob presented a case study about Liberty Mutual, a large BMC customer with the BMC suite of Service Management (Remedy), Service Assurance (TrueSight), and Infrastructure Optimization (BBSA) software. The glue connecting everything together: Atrium Orchestrator (AO). Since Liberty Mutual has 8000 networked devices and 25,000 servers, automation of repetitive manual tasks such as server provisioning/remediation can have an enormous impact on cost reduction.

With more than 65,000 change requests per year, Liberty is really getting their money’s worth out of their investment in BMC. A typical use case is auto-remediation of a server. Beginning with a Remedy incident, the request makes its way to AO, which opens up a change ticket. Once approved, the change ticket calls AO which directs the server remediation effort. Once complete the change request is closed off and the CMDB/CI is updated. Another important benefit is the reduction in MTTR.

DOD Organization. RightStar has worked with BMC Remedy and ADDM for over three years at Ft. Belvoir. There, we assist with the discovery and dependency mapping of components within their IT environment, identifying which IT components comprise enterprise applications and business services. Additionally, we map both physical and logical infrastructure interdependencies to the BMC Atrium CMDB by looking at ports, processes, and communications.

An interesting use case is the detection of “unauthorized” network equipment. When an unknown asset is discovered on the network, a check is performed to ensure that a change request was in place for that new asset. If not, an alert is sent for the asset manager to investigate. In this case, the loop is not closed, until a change request can be tied to the asset. An obvious benefit is the prevention of unauthorized equipment to the network and enforcement of the change policies.

The digitalization of everything is quickly changing long established business models, e.g. Uber, and within IT, digitalization may mean a more agile “digital by default approach.” Despite the waning interest in ITIL, these new business and organizational models, combined with the new ways of buying, owning, and operating technology, mean that ITIL process such as Change Management are more important than ever.

One thing is certain: IT is becoming more and not less complex so continuous service desk process and technology improvement will return significant value to the organization. The result: fewer outages, reduced costs, increased agent and employee productivity, and overall, improved customer satisfaction.

About dick1stark

I am the President and founder of RightStar, Inc, an XTIVIA company. RightStar is a leading ITSM and DevOps consultancy and BMC Software Elite Solution Provider and Atlassian Gold 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. In 2019, BMC selected RightStar as its DSM North American Partner of the Year for its sales and partnership excellence. Finally, in November 2020, RightStar was acquired by XTIVIA, an innovative IT Solutions Provider. Dick is a graduate of Stanford University and a Project Management Professional (PMP).
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