Enterprise Service Management (ESM)

by Maya G

What once considered an add-on product by most businesses is now a core component. ESM or Enterprise Service Management is enabling the same service offerings for employees that companies once created exclusively for their customer base. In this article, learn what ESM is and how any organization can implement it.

Enterprise Service Management

Exploring benefits of ESM

Everything is sold based on the benefits they have on offer. ESM is not an exception. Businesses should invest based on the value it generates.

Forrester provides an accurate definition of Enterprise Service Management which is, "ESM extends the capabilities and functionalities of IT service management beyond traditional technology service to include business-centric use cases".

Thus, Enterprise Service Management is an extension of IT Service Management or ITSM. Just like ITSM is focused more on the customers to drive innovation, ESM is focused more on the employees within the organization.

With that said, there are several benefits of adopting ESM for your business. Some of which are:


  •  Breaks down Internal Silos :

When there's a new hire, HR works with the IT team through a myriad of steps. Most of the steps are manual, which then become error-prone. But ESM can digitize this process. An orchestrated approach helps define a consistent workflow for new and existing employees, which helps in transition. So when there's a new hire or an employee gets promoted, the HR team can get the things done even without interacting with the IT team.

  •  Enables Automation :

Automation is the future of work. As clear by the previous point, ESM can drive automation within the company and among cross-functional employees. All the team can display their digital catalog and help identify the process they follow.

IT teams, specifically, can automate access to software for all. They can replace wrecked equipment just as quickly without tracking or tagging anything.

  •  Strengthens Control and Governance :

You can set up metrics and reporting techniques that offer a high level of visibility across the organization. ESM also enables you to enforce governance on your employees and help them stay in compliance. Without any centralized service management tools, this process is going to be lengthy and erroneous.

  • Continuous Improvement :

Other than increasing productivity among team members, ESM encourages making continuous improvement. By tracking the metrics, you can formulate ways to improve on them. Thus, you can eliminate waste by removing redundant surpluses and increase production concurrently.

  •  Improves Customer Satisfaction :

Satisfying their customers is the top priority of every organization. As internal processes help define roles and responsibilities, employees are held more responsible for their duties. The results can be seen directly on the customer satisfaction score.

Since ESM is an extension of ITSM, ESM picks the best of the lot from existing ITSM practices. So it's not just about blindly duplicating the IT management practices just for the sake of it, it's about selectively adopting the best practices.

ITSM, ITSM templates toolkit

How to implement ESM in any organization?

ESM may seem complicated to implement and use. And in some way, it is. But you can implement it seamlessly if you follow the right framework. Below we discuss a three-step framework that can be used by any business of any size.

 1.Create a Centralized Portal for All Service Requests:

The goal of the ESM is to make the working process seamless for the employees. And that starts with a single centralized portal that caters to all.

So when an employee needs a new laptop for his work, he should see all the processes on a single panel. Normally, it would include notifying the HR team, requesting a statement from the finance department, and updating software from the IT team. The service panel should have all three options in one place, thus making it easier for the employee.

The same is true for all other purpose ranging from applying for leave or planning a new project.

You can start with initiating a pilot project with a handful of employees from all departments. Centralize the processes and record the output.

2. Design an Employee-Centric Service Model :

The next step in the framework is to adopt an employee-centric service model. This can be as simple as creating a knowledge bank and helping employees discover answers to the relevant question.

For example, HR teams can create answers on how to apply for leaves and how it will affect their salary. Employees of other departments can access the knowledge bank and get the answers they need. Then they can apply for the leaves using the centralized portal.

 This makes the overall experience so much better compared to manually going back and forth between HR and other teams.

 3.Automate Workflow and Ticketing :

The final step is to work on automation. With an automated workflow, teams can save more time by eliminating mundane tasks and spend more time on productive tasks. For example, HR teams can use IT resources to automate document processing. ESM can create a workflow that transitions ownership of the ticket to relevant individuals. It helps the documents to be tracked and fulfilled.

How Enterprise Service Management Can Learn from Digital Transformation Initiatives?

Digital transformation is driving the next-generation business models. Organizations are rethinking their approach and inventing new ways of doing business by leveraging digital technologies.

So for implementing ESM, you can learn a lot from digital transformation initiatives. The first thing is to change the focus from "inside-out" to "outside-in". So you must have the perspective that the employees are external to the organization and then work towards fulfilling their needs.

If you ever struggle to see results out of ESM, then you must be plagued with one of the following:

  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Underdeveloped talent pool who were not trained properly
  • Lack of communication
  • Inappropriate digital culture

These are the reasons behind the failure of digital transformation too.

But there seems to be limited information on the best practices for Enterprise Service Management. Much of it is stored in the form of IP or Intellectual Properties of Consultancy firms. You can procure the IP from the firms by working with them directly, provided you have the budget for doing so. Otherwise, you can get started with the implementation and improve gradually.

ITSM, ITSM templates toolkit