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Most IT Service Management (ITSM) tools all do the same thing: help you manage the various elements of your work and streamline the implementation of ITSM practices into your IT office. One would think, given that similarity, that an IT shop would c

Keep your vendor inside the tent

Most IT Service Management (ITSM) tools all do the same thing: help you manage the various elements of your work and streamline the implementation of ITSM practices into your IT office. One would think, given that similarity, that an IT shop would choose an ITSM tool and stick with it. However, Kristie Magowan points out how IT organizations do go through the process of cancelling their current ITSM solution and finding another. So how does this happen? According to Magowan, it can be multiple things:   businesses believe that their current tool doesn't meet the business requirements, a new CIO wants to implement the solution they used in a past position, or simply just a soured relationship between the two. Magowan draws the parallel of getting back into the dating game after a lengthy relationship: at first it might seem like everyone you meet has the qualities that you believed were lacking before, but after the “honeymoon” period is over, you may begin feeling like what you had before wasn't so bad after all. The first step citied is simply making sure you fully recognize what gaps you are experiencing with your current vendor (and consider if it's all just in your perception): The first step, when you are looking at changing your tool, is to go to the vendor of your current software, sit down with them and find out just what the real gaps between what you have and what you want are, you may be surprised to find that they don't actually exist…you  just  may not be utilising the tool to its full potential. Get involved in some “relationship counselling [sic]“, do you really need to get out, or can this marriage be saved? Let the vendor know that you are ready to walk, and see if they care enough to put an effort into the relationship. If reconciliation isn't possible, however, look for a few key qualities in your next vendor, including “after sale” support, past clients and their experiences, and a contract that not only satisfies what you need right away, but what you may need in the future as well.

About Anne Grybowski

Anne is a former staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success, with a degree in Media Studies from Penn State University.

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