COLLABORATION & AUTONOMY
“The most unique aspect about 4 me is it allows an organization to link their 4me accounts with the 4me accounts of other organizations. Such a link is called a ‘trust’ in 4me. A trust is very different from an integration; it can be established without any technical skills. It takes less than a minute to request a trust with another support organization. If the other organization accepts, the two organizations can use 4me to work together.”
Martijn Adams – 4me
When your support organization needs to work together with another organization to support a service, there have traditionally been 3 ways to make this reasonably efficient:
- The support specialists of your organization need access to the service management application of the other organization, or
- The support specialists of the other organization need to work in your organization’s service management application, or
- an integration needs to be built and maintained between the service management applications of your organization and that of the other organization.
The first 2 options are normally not acceptable because the configuration of a service management application is typically optimized for a specific organization. Giving another organization access to this application, provides this other organization with an environment that does not meet their requirements. In addition, the organization that owns the service management environment would need to pay for the other organization’s access.
The 3rd option is also far from ideal. That is because building an integration is expensive and an integration requires technical resource to support it.
“Switching our service management tool to 4me was no jump into darkness. It was a conscious decision to offer more clarity and transparency within IT and to our internal customers. The service levels and KPIs can now be tracked by all stakeholders.”
Setting Up SLAs for External Customers
This means, for example, that your organization can register an SLA for the other organization. Once this SLA has been registered, and the customer organization has accepted it, requests can be passed from the customer organization to your organization.
The only thing that the customer organization is allowed to see in your organization’s 4me account is the SLA that you registered for them. Likewise, your support specialists can see only the requests that the customer has related to the service your organization provides.
Collaboration on Changes and Projects
It is also possible to specify in a trust that your organization allows the other organization to assign tasks of its changes or projects to your organization. In such cases, your people are allowed to see these tasks and the details of the changes or projects they have been asked to help out with.
Outsourcing Support for Configuration Items
And you can allow a customer to assign configuration items (CIs or assets) that they have registered in their 4me account to a support team of your organization. That is how your customers can give your organization the support responsibility for the CIs that they will remain the financial owner of. All of that CI information, with the exception of the financial information, becomes available to your support specialists as soon as the customer has transferred the support responsibility.
Service Desk Outsourcing
Another way in which organizations can collaborate when they each have their own 4me account, is by making one or more of their roles (i.e. access profiles) available to the other organization. This is useful, for example, when a customer has outsourced its first line support to your organization. In the trust they can specify that your organization can assign their Service Desk Analyst role to the people in your organization that provide the service desk function for this customer.
This allows these people to register requests for employees of the customer organization. These requests are stored in the 4me account of the customer, but as long as the customer does not revoke their Service Desk Analyst role that it made available to your organization, your service desk analysts who have this role are able to access those requests.
You can even give one of your people the Service Desk Analyst role of multiple customer organizations. That allows them to take calls from all employees of these customers, while working only in 4me’s Service Desk console, i.e. without the need to switch to a different screen when an end-user from another customer calls.
Collaboration with Internal Support Domains
The ability to set up trusts between organizations makes it possible to work securely with other organizations. This functionality is not only used by organizations to work together with their managed service providers (MSPs). Large enterprises also make use of this functionality to allow their IT, HR and finance departments, around the globe, to work together.
In enterprises, each department can have full control over their 4me account, without affecting their ability to collaborate effectively with other departments across their organization. Making sure Directors have full control over their department’s 4me account, allowsthem to optimize their processes so they best meet the demands of the local business they support.
This level of flexibility is not available with other enterprise service management tools, that force a standard configuration on all departments that need to work together.
Large organizations also make use of trusts to link up their local departments with the shared service centers and regional data centers. The organizations that provide shared services, typically need to set up their 4me account a little differently than a department that directly supports end-users. This is again where 4me offers the ability to work together even if the 4me accounts are set up differently.
Trusts are also used to link different types of departments so they can work together. For example, in a given country the IT department, HR and facility management may need to work on standard changes for new employees (e.g. to set up payroll, set up an email address and provide a desk).
By giving each support department its own 4me account, they have control over the setup of their accounts and who has access to the data in each account, while making sure that all departments can seamlessly work together when this is needed.