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IBM’s New Cloud Offering Helps Companies Improve IT Service Desk Operations


New monthly subscription rounds out the industry’s most complete portfolio of flexible delivery offerings to manage IT services

ARMONK, N.Y., - IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the availability of new online software services based on the same on-premise solutions used by clients today – now delivered as a monthly subscription offering - that enables better automation and control of IT Service Desk functions. This new service adds to IBM’s software-as-a-service offerings that help automate a range of IT services critical to maintaining business operations.

Even small and mid-size companies deal with labor-intensive services for employees such as resolving IT issues, fixing laptops and onboarding new hires. Many companies struggle with slow, inefficient service request handling because at the core their networking, facilities, application support and IT assets aren’t integrated and typically depend on manual updates. For example, IBM estimates that only five percent of service and support issues are resolved by self-service, making automation and integration crucial for service management.

To help meet the demand of automating IT functions, IBM Tivoli Live - service manager allows clients to start with IT Service Desk functionality, for instance, and grow into more extensive IT automation services as a company’s needs change -- such as change management, asset management and other IT management areas.

Since Tivoli Live - service manager is delivered on the IBM Cloud and based on a subscription model, the service reduces the upfront capital investment, complexity and management required by on-premise deployment. There is no need to purchase hardware, software licenses or engage in extensive software configuration. The service is based on a common platform and architecture that thousands of IBM clients use today as on-premise software. Unlike competitors, IBM offers flexible delivery options in the form of on-premise software and software-as-a-service that allows the customers to evolve from one to the other as their business needs change, or use them simultaneously in combination with one another for different IBM solutions.

“IBM gives clients the choice to rent, buy or ’mix and match’ our software for automating IT,” said Al Zollar, general manager, IBM Tivoli. “With today’s news, IBM lets clients solve their service management issues with a quick and easy on-ramp that also provides a pathway to greater enterprise IT automation down the road -- without lock in. This is part of IBM’s overall strategy of growing our software-as-a-service initiative.”

IBM’s Tivoli Live - service manager provides a portfolio of automated functions for IT service management. For example, when a manager onboards a new employee, an online service catalog helps the manager set up the employee’s items such as an office space, laptop, network access, email identification, etc. If an employee inquires about a down database the service agent can quickly understand the business impact using the application topology and appropriately assign priority to the “trouble ticket.” This improves response time, resource allocation and data availability.

This is IBM’s second offering in the software-as-a-service Tivoli Live portfolio. Announced a year ago, Tivoli Live – monitoring service helps clients manages the health and performance of IT resources, including operating systems, virtualized servers, middleware and software. Customers can use these cloud-based, software-as-a-service offerings in combination with highly-configured on-premise deployment of other IBM software solutions, with the assurance that they work together regardless of the consumption model. Clients can also integrate both Tivoli Live services for a broader service management environment.

IBM’s Tivoli Live - service manager includes this comprehensive suite of integrated services:

* Incident and problem management: Helps automate and manage service desk operations and provide quick resolutions to requests such as laptop problems and other requests. Knowledge management capabilities takes the strategies and best practices of individuals or organizational processes to help meet business objectives such as improving performance, gaining competitive advantage, sharing lessons learned, and better integration within the company.
* IT asset management: Manages the lifecycle of IT assets, including software and hardware such as servers, networking equipment, laptops, etc. This feature streamlines the process and improves the control of managing these assets. As a result, accountability of inventory is increased to ensure compliance and provide better performance for users. Risk is also reduced through standardization, proper documentation and loss detection.
* Service catalog: Provides users with a single portal for requesting standard IT and non-IT services such as requesting a new laptop, change in benefits, resetting passwords, adding or removing an employee to a department, resetting printer toner, etc. Built-in tools enable capabilities to create and publish service offerings in the portal and define manual or automated request fulfillment plans.
* Change, configuration and release management: Provides comprehensive change management capabilities to manage system configuration change requests from the initial request to the final review.

The service will offer 24x7 phone and email support, and will have extensive self-help content to get running quickly.


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