Adopting a more mature approach to IT service requires three key aspects working together in harmony: people, processes, and technology. Cornell University’s Central IT division had the first two elements in place, but the third was lacking. Central IT staff wanted to be able to move ahead with initiatives such as enabling self-service and using key performance indicators to improve operations, but the IT service management platform they were using was holding them back.
While the platform included detailed reporting capabilities, these features weren’t very accessible or easy to use.
“Our old tool had very sophisticated reporting, but you almost needed programming experience to be able to use it,” says Todd Maniscalco, assistant director for customer service and support within Cornell’s Central IT division. As a result, team members had to spend a lot of time building and scheduling reports that provided the kind of insight that leaders wanted.
The university also didn’t have an easy way to create self-service portals for students, faculty, and staff. Central IT maintained a knowledge base within Drupal, an open-source content management system, but there was no easy way to manage this information.
The university was looking for an IT and enterprise service management platform that was simple to use and included robust self-service capabilities that would allow IT staff to take customer service to a new level of maturity. They found that — and more — in TeamDynamix.
Using TeamDynamix, Cornell has been able to optimize the customer experience. And adopting a self-service approach to ITSM was a large part of that.
Using the client portal features of TeamDynamix, the university’s individual IT units have been able to set up a system of client portals organized by service categories that are dynamically linked to knowledge base articles related to those categories.
If students or staff can’t find the information they need, they can initiate a service request directly from these portals, and their request is forwarded automatically to the appropriate service technician for a response.
What’s more, the automated workflows built into the TeamDynamix platform will allow IT staff to manage knowledge base articles more systematically, ensuring that information remains relevant and up to date.
The platform’s intuitive reporting capabilities make it much easier to glean operational insights that will help leaders improve IT service, such as the average time it takes to resolve various kinds of support tickets. Reporting that used to take hours now takes only a few minutes, and anyone who’s authorized can run reports without needing any specialized knowledge.
“With TeamDynamix, we can teach people to fish, so to speak — and they can build whatever report they need,” Maniscalco observes. “We can also create and schedule a central set of reports that we know our leadership wants to see.”
Although Central IT can’t mandate that other departments follow certain practices, the division is doing what it can to ensure that TeamDynamix is used effectively across the university.
“We set up an advisory committee to share processes and practices that we have found to be effective,” Briggs says. “If there are any major incidents that affect multiple units, we coordinate our response to those incidents — and we have gained a lot of efficiencies from this.”
TeamDynamix has quickly become an indispensable tool for driving greater IT maturity campus-wide, which was a major goal behind adopting the system.
This post was originally published in September 2019 and has been updated with new information.