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Managing Chaos Through Process Automation in an “IT Everywhere” World (Part 2)

This is a continuation of Part 1.

CIOs and ITOps leaders should consider how to materially address a broader set of IT service delivery needs that account for modern operations and hybrid workforce dynamics. An Enterprise Technology Management (ETM) solution can help democratize process automation, coordinate existing processes, reduce human interaction, reduce errors, and free up valuable staff to focus on more important work.

ETM is a fairly new term in the industry, but the problem it solves has emerged as a powerful platform opportunity that complements existing IT tools and management investments. ETM has the ability to aggregate and correlate information across many domains and IT management tools to enable higher order operational analytics and monitoring, and to automate the flow of those disparate processes via a central authority in a simple way that anyone in IT can use. Beyond efficiency and expenditure saving advantages, ETM can bring organizations a step closer to autonomous operations.

There are many potential upsides to Enterprise Technology Management, but one quick example comes to mind.

Onboarding and Offboarding – for new or departing employees, we need to focus not only on physical asset delivery or recovery, but on a wider scope of areas including access to data, applications, security, rights, network, software licenses, human resources, finance, cloud instance and more. Each of these areas is often a separate control domain that often has its own flow, information sources, set of technologies and process owner responsible for keeping track of what’s completed (or not). This accounts for many disjointed processes that introduce errors and omission that can erode IT process automation confidence.

With a well designed ETM platform, staff can more easily define a technology-integrated set of workflows that systematically trigger actions based on specific use cases such as leaves of absence, termination date, department transfers or role changes. Reducing ticketing delays and ensuring completion.

For example, for a departing employee, an automated, integrated offboarding process would automatically generate a return shipping label, notify the user of expected asset returns, transition employee work files to secured holding, reallocate unused software licenses, and remove the user from all system access points. IT Managers would also gain an audit record for data preservation and work place transfer assurance. They could automatically identify cloud resources where the owner is no longer with the company or part of the department and dynamically reassign ownership or reallocate those resources to another employee, rather than letter licenses and infrastructure sit idle.

It would also allow tracking of offboarding status across finance, compliance, audit, and inventory, creating a continually updated status report.

A recent survey of IT Leaders found operational efficiency is the most common driver for digital transformation1

As we move toward an evermore complex IT delivery system to support an evermore dynamic business, ETM’s ability to democratize business process automation for IT -- while maintaining tight control on audit and compliance across all those integration points -- will be a critical tool for a CIO and their teams to have. ETM holds the potential to truly accelerate IT efficiency and effectiveness.

My Questions to you as an IT Leader are:

  • Are you comfortable that when an employee moves elsewhere, all assets, logins, links, data, and licenses are accounted for and reallocated?
  • Are you comfortable that when a new hire or contractor is onboarded, that appropriate asset and access are efficiently delivered for day-1 productivity.
  • Are you comfortable that when the audit team asks for a detailed analysis of steps taken to insure compliance with regulatory polices, you can comply?
  • More so, if you became more comfortable, how much more economic, competitive, and risk mitigation advantages could you provide your business?

1 Enterprise Strategy Group 2023 Technology Spending Intentions Survey

David J. Cappuccio was formerly a VP, Distinguished Analyst and Chief of Research for the Infrastructure teams at Gartner where he spearheaded research in enterprise data center, cloud and hybrid strategies. His experience extends decades in the technology arena, including financial services, IT operations, and management consulting. He currently serves as an independent consultant and advisory board member.

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