As state and local governments kick off digital transformation initiatives, many find their existing IT Service Management (ITSM) tool presents a stumbling block.
Fortunately, more modern, codeless ITSM platforms provide the necessary capabilities for success – combining Project Portfolio Management (PPM), Enterprise Service Management (ESM) as well as integration and automation (iPaaS) in one platform.
This single platform approach can empower government organizations to more efficiently manage resources while providing better citizen experiences through improved internal processes across departments.
Whether supporting a state, a large city or a small town – having an ITSM tool that is easy to use, easy to own and easy to operate can make all the difference, here’s why:
- Reduce Resource Drain with Automation and Workflow – ITSM platforms that introduce self-service portals, a knowledge base and workflow automation can help reduce the drain on IT technicians. Like many other businesses and organizations – the demand for service has gone up exponentially over the last few years for state and local governments as IT now has to support better digital experiences and a “service anywhere, anytime” mentality.
- Low Total Cost of Ownership with No Code Administration – Many ITSM platforms require 4-6 FTE just to manage the system; this includes system configuration, building workflows and setting up automation. A no-code ITSM platform is easy to use and does not require a team to administer. In fact, you can use just .25 FTE to manage within systems like TeamDynamix.
- Improve Self-Service Adoption with Easy-to-Use Portal – Many portals require technical resources to manage and maintain. However, a true no-code platform allows users to modify the service catalog, add new forms, build workflows and set up knowledge base articles quickly and easily. Self-service adoption goes up when end-users can quickly and easily find what they are looking for.
The Changing Landscape of Public Sector IT Service
“Demand for service is skyrocketing,” Abigail Ferguson, Customer Success Manager for the city of Madison’s Information Technology department, said. “But our staff levels have stayed relatively the same.”
To address the growing demand, the city of Madison is taking a proactive approach and combining Project Portfolio Management with ITSM using a single platform through TeamDynamix, “This is going to help us really get a sense of what projects align with our strategic goals. We can see what projects align with our service catalog that exist today and take a more proactive approach with our customers and other agencies,” she said.
In addition, the city’s IT group plans to utilize the ITSM tool and ticket data to better manage their employees’ time and improve efficiency.
“We historically haven’t tracked the amount of time we spend on resolving tickets or on a project or task,” she explained, “So we are asking everyone to do that now using our tool so that we have a better picture of what expenditures do we have (in terms of staff time) and then we can use that to have a holistic view of resources so we can do resource capacity planning.”
Once they know their baseline for certain tasks and projects they’ll be able to identify areas where they might be able to make process improvements and provide a quicker, better customer experience.
This single platform approach for ITSM and PPM is also going to help the city identify what projects should be high priority and what projects can be turned down or scheduled for a later time, “In government, you can’t always say no – it’s more of a ‘we can do that later’ so we want to be able to support our staff and our citizens the best we can by prioritizing the work,” Ferguson said.
Streamlining IT Service with Self-Service
Using TeamDynamix, the city of Buffalo, N.Y.’s Department of Management Information Systems is streamlining the delivery of IT service for 2,100 city employees. As employees receive faster IT service, they’re able to serve Buffalo’s 250,000-plus residents more effectively.
Using TeamDynamix ITSM, the city has enhanced the delivery of IT service in many ways, most importantly through the creation of a self-service portal and knowledge base.
Self-service can help reduce the amount of time IT staff spend fielding calls, answering questions and routing requests—enabling them to focus on more strategic work.
“Creating an employee self-service portal was a pivotal step in streamlining IT service for the city,” says System Support Analyst Nathan Ignatz.
Powered by TeamDynamix, the portal allows city employees to find answers to their IT questions online. This provides instant gratification for employees and eliminates the need for further assistance in many cases.
If employees can’t resolve their own IT issues, they can submit a service request through the portal by choosing from an online service catalog. Their request is then routed automatically to an appropriate IT staff member for a response, based on the nature of the problem or request.
Aided by the dynamic workflows built into the TeamDynamix platform, a small team of IT staff members create and maintain knowledge base articles for the city, ensuring that this information always remains relevant and up to date.
“Before the service portal existed, employees would call or email the help desk to ask questions or request service,” Ignatz says. This tied up IT staff time in fielding questions, creating service tickets, and getting them into the hands of the correct team members. Having employees enter service requests directly through the portal ensures a faster resolution to their issue and frees up IT staff to work on other tasks instead.
“It allows us to provide service quicker,” Ignatz observes.
Building a robust knowledge base and enhanced portal has also been a goal for the city of Madison.
“Our client portal will really open up the gateway to all city staff to be able to request IT services and also access the self-service portion of our portal,” Ferguson said. “It’s really going to be a game changer for us because it will be consolidating all of the different places people used to go for resources.” With this key pillar in place, the team can further build out the knowledge base to expedite self-service resolution.
The IT customer portal has been a big project for the city of Madison’s IT team. Not only will it consolidate all of the different resource areas currently in use, but it will house two knowledge bases. The first is an internal IT knowledge base that will serve as a place for IT staff to quickly locate information and answers as needed to address tickets and requests.
The second knowledge base will be geared towards self-service for staff and citizens who want to locate answers themselves. “This will allow us to attach articles to tickets and teach people along the way how to find the answers they need. This will really empower our customers with resources and knowledge,” Ferguson said.
And ultimately, this improved self-service experience will help the city IT team lower ticket volumes.
“We are seeing the same resource constraints other cities are,” she said. “We are understaffed at times and need to focus on higher-value implementations. So, anything we can do to empower our users to find the resources they need for self-service is a must for us.”