IT Governance

What is the Future of IT Service Management?

Is ITSM this old notion of time-consuming change management processes and traditional governance, or is it the dynamic center for expanding IT value, impact, and effectiveness for the business end? According to a white paper by Dennis Drogseth for Enterprise Management Associates (EMA), it can be both, but the latter is what will prosper in the future. Let’s take a look at that future.

Organization and Growth

Instead of limiting ITSM to the service desk niche of IT, the EMA study suggests a broader role based on evidence that ITSM oversight originates primarily at the CIO level or with operations. Already, 49% ITSM organizations are increasing their engagement with enterprise-level activities.

EMA identified five improvements essential for the growth of ITSM. These include (1) end-user experience (internal), (2) operations-to-service-desk (O2SD) integrations for incident and problem management, (3) O2SD integrations for configuration and change management, (4) support for move to the cloud, and (5) customer/supply-chain end-user experience.

Change Management & Service Catalog

Additionally, interest in configuration management systems (CMS) or configuration management databases (CMDB) is on the rise. One look at the change in percentage of use cases for CMS / CMDB confirms this:

…the results show steady growth toward service impact for performance management, which edged out asset management and change management for leading CMDB/CMS use cases.

Two-thirds of all respondents to the EMA study said they utilized service catalogues. Of those who used catalogues, professional IT services and internal IT provisioning topped the list, followed closely by application support (cloud and other). The role of the service catalogue is expanding independent of IT as well.

Other Considerations

The study showed a strong and growing need to support a “heterogeneous mobile environment,” while signaling cloud as a resource for expanding service desk capabilities, though in general  there is a need for more integrated support for agile and DevOps. ISTM professionals used a wide array of best practices, with ITIL v3, Six Sigma, and Scorecard the most notable.


The study concludes that there are two tracks on which ITSM may function (a fast track and a slow track). The organization can choose to remain a silo, keeping to more reactive, traditional models, or it can attempt to embrace new technologies along with cross-domain integrations to support operations at a higher level of enterprise service.

Read the full PDF at:

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