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Ryan Ogilvie

How You Can Improve Business Support

While on a support call recently, I had the misfortune of suffering through long hold times, dreary music, and being transferred from person to person with no end in sight. While I waited I had plenty of time to think about what could be done better not just for this experience, but also from my own perspective to improve interactions with my own business. Listen More, Speak Less First, start by listening to your business—really …

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How to Find the Value of Service Improvement & Sell It to Leadership

In tougher economic times, many organizations will start to evaluate all the components that make up their operational model. In other words, they look for value. A challenge for those delivering services will be to illustrate not only the current value that they provide but also future-state value that can be added with some margin-of-improvement initiatives. When speaking about business value, we must first recognize that this term can be interpreted in slightly different ways. …

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Finding Value in Event Monitoring

Fact: Your IT operations are monitoring your infrastructure in some capacity. Whether it is network traffic, database activity, application health, or a combination of these, your goal is to ensure stability. How well is this working out? Depending on your IT organizational structure, each “silo” may answer that everything is working rather well, so you might want to reframe the question to determine what value your monitoring is adding. If you were to look at …

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Four Questions for Quenching Knowledge Management

The thirst for knowledge must be quenched. Every day people are looking for answers that they need. The question you have to ask yourself as a service provider is, “Are you positioned to satisfy their needs?” One of the fundamental challenges with knowledge management isn’t capturing the information; it is usually the ability to actually manage it. Part of the discovery process should lead us to ask ourselves why we need to do this in …

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How to Use Metrics to Optimize Service Delivery

I want you to think about all the different types of organizations you worked for. Whether they were Finance, Communications, Energy, Agriculture, or Transport, there was likely one similarity among them: The reporting that was done from an IT perspective did not produce metrics that mattered. Why? It’s simple—we (as an IT organization) tend to loop endlessly on the metrics as they apply to IT. We must move away from thinking that “recovery from failure …

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Unlike Scotch, Problem Records Do Not Get Better with Age

At a recent service management event I met up with a friend who is a problem manager, and as practitioners do, they tend to vent about one issue that they are facing in their organization. We started talking about a problem record that they had open and how it seemed it was never going to be closed off. Digging a little deeper, I asked why it was still open. “You know…the root cause of this …

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The Evolution of the Service Desk: A Better Help Experience

Is your Service Desk still relevant? Pretty bold question when we are talking about how we provide support and services for our business needs? For the most part IT organizations have set up a ‘help desk’ to address their business challenges with regards to IT. Over time this may have transitioned to a Service Desk. The challenge is whether this has been a transformation in name only. The first thing you need to understand is …

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How Knowledge Management Overcomes the High Cost of Ignorance

A few weeks back I bumped into a friend of mine who is working as an application manager at a large food distribution centre. After the usual updates on what was new, she delved into a story about one of their legacy applications that was a pain point. In essence the problem was that the tool was not scalable, and it was this way because of change management. I admit at first when I heard …

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5 Tips to ‘DO’ Incident Management

While sitting on a bus on the way to work, I saw a billboard that said something to the effect of, “We DO Sales.” I always love when people say that they ‘do’ something. A few months back I was discussing IT Service Management with a colleague who is currently at another company. She mentioned some improvement initiatives they were working on and said, “… and well, you know, we already do Incident.” There it …

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Top Phrases to Avoid at Change Review Meetings

We have all heard these before, whether in a change advisory board meeting, a go-no-go or some pre-change implementation gathering—statements that make us cringe and laugh all at the same time. Unfortunately, despite the mild humor they provide, we repeat them over and over at our own peril in some cases. Here are a few of the common ones I have heard over the years, with ways to address them in lieu of guffawing. You …

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