If you’re considering investing in IT services for your business, you may have come across the acronym ITSM.

Yes, we know that there are a lot of acronyms in the world of IT. We apologize in advance. In this article, we’ll attempt to provide some clarity on this particular piece of jargon.

Let’s unpack what ITSM is, how it works, and how you’ll apply it to your own business.

What is ITSM?

To start with, ITSM stands for IT service management. 

Atlassian describes this as “how IT teams manage the end-to-end delivery of IT services to customers.”

Basically, ITSM is the practices and processes by which IT is delivered. Admittedly, the concept is a bit meta – IT service is the care and optimization of IT, while ITSM is the care and optimization of IT service.

This involves a focus on ongoing improvement of services, usually through the continual analysis and optimization of service processes.

At a practical level, ITSM is often tied to software solutions that help to facilitate IT services. For example, software distributor Freshworks offers a platform (Freshservice) that’s specifically dedicated to ITSM. ConnectWise (a business management software for managed IT service providers) also boasts features that are meant to be helpful in ITSM.

How is ITSM different from ITIL?

You’ll commonly hear the acronym ITIL mentioned alongside ITSM (we did warn you that IT has a lot of acronyms).

ITIL stands for information technology infrastructure library. It’s a term coined by Axelos (a company that develops global best practice standards for IT professionals) that represents a framework for approaching ITSM.

Here’s how Axelos defines it:

“ITIL is the most widely accepted approach to running effective IT/digital services and has been adopted by individuals and organizations across the world. ITIL helps define the direction of the service provider with a clear operating model and aligns services to the business strategy and customer needs.”

The key part of that definition is that ITIL is needs-focused; its emphasis is on meeting business and customer requirements.

While ITIL is often taken to be synonymous with ITSM, in reality, it’s simply one approach to ITSM. Another popular approach is DevOps, which emphasizes agility and lean practices so that organizations can move more quickly.

There’s some debate as to whether ITIL and DevOps are opposing or complementary frameworks, but, for the scope of this article, we’ll simply note that they have different focuses and move on to what you need to know as you consider your own business’ IT: how to approach ITSM for your company.

How to do ITSM well

ITSM is important because its outcome is to shift technology from serving as a utility to serving as a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

With that in mind, here are three quick tips to doing it well.

1. Maintain a knowledge base.

ITSM always involves documentation. This allows IT to function more efficiently and users to work more effectively, because systems and processes are accessible and more easily understood.

2. Analyze what’s working and what’s not working.

Any good ITSM approach involves the ongoing gathering of feedback. At Complete Network, for example, we regularly collect client satisfaction scores for our support responses to ensure that our processes are serving users.

Gathering this data allows for weak spots in processes to be identified.

3. Optimize processes based on data.

Once process problems are noted, they can be solved. From there, the cycle usually repeats – any process changes would be documented, then evaluated, then further optimized.

It’s an ongoing, continual process.

Do I need to do ITSM for my business?

If you have more than 10 workstations at your business, then you probably do need ITSM, because enough IT service is happening that optimization could be valuable.

The good news is that you don’t need to be the one to do ITSM for your business if you choose to outsource your IT.

As we’ve written before, for the majority of mid-sized businesses, outsourced IT service makes the most sense. And, if you’re outsourcing your IT service, you’re usually outsourcing ITSM, too.

High-quality IT services are continually optimizing their offerings to provide the best support through the most effective processes. They are, by definition, doing ITSM.

Ready to work with an IT service that focuses on continual improvement?

At Complete Network, we deliver outstanding IT service to Albany, New York, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Bluffton, South Carolina businesses that’s designed to continually upgrade your technology.

Our focus on ongoing improvement is a big factor in our high user satisfaction rating – over 98% of our service interactions are rated positively. And our IT service process is designed with regular review periods, so that we can continually align what we’re doing to the needs of your business and your users.

When you work with us, you won’t have to worry about ITSM. It’s built into our offering. And our results are a testament to the effectiveness of our approach.

To learn more about how our IT services can upgrade your business, get in touch with our friendly, helpful team at 877-877-1840 or [email protected].

Is Complete Network the Right Fit for Your Business? Download Our Partner Evaluation Guide to Find Out.

We know that the first step toward better IT support is to research your options. We’ve put this guide together to aid you in that process.

It’s designed to give you an overview of our organization, so that you have the key information you need to evaluate our service fit.

This guide covers:

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