Finding the right ITSM vendor: 5 questions to ask when shortlisting solutions

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If the people in your IT department can’t catch up with all the incoming calls, can’t share knowledge efficiently, or are stuck working with an old piece of software that’s not user-friendly, it might be time to find an ITSM solution that takes away the pressure. But where do you start?

5 key questions to ask yourself when comparing ITSM providers

It makes sense to compare the features and functions that modern tools bring. But getting a new ITSM solution is about much more than just software. When you implement a new tool, you’re effectively entering a partnership, so choosing the right vendor is essential.

1. How do they handle implementations?

Find out how your prospective vendors help their customers get started with the new tool. Do they outsource implementations to consultancy firms? Or do they hire in-house specialists to help you take your first steps? We’d suggest opting for the latter.

We’ve learned that nobody knows more about helping customers get the most out of an ITSM solution than the people who work with it every day. That’s why we never outsource our implementations to third parties.

TOPdesk consultants help customers determine their needs, work with them to configure and optimize the software, and train teams to make their service delivery a success. This also helps keep implementation times short, since the aim is to get customers up and running as quickly as possible, not to build up consultancy hours.

2. What kinds of training do they offer?

Once you’ve implemented your new tool, your colleagues and customers need to feel empowered enough to use it. Choosing a vendor that provides trainings and webinars is a great way to help them become self-reliant. Now is also the time to think about your team’s specific training needs: Do they just need to know the basics to get started? Maybe they could do with a crash course in knowledge management? Or even something more in-depth, like our user and application manager training?

Browse through the trainings and extra content offered by each vendor and determine whether they will help your organization get the most out of the new tool.

3. Do they offer in-house support?

Even the most self-reliant service teams need a helping hand sometimes. That’s why it’s important to investigate which kinds of support each vendor can offer you once you’ve got the tool up and running. Finding a vendor with local, in-house support agents is a great way to ensure that your team receives personalized help from people who know the software inside and out.

For our part, we’re very proud of our friendly, knowledgeable support agents, who are always ready to go the extra mile to solve a problem. In fact, our customers tell us it’s one of the best things about working with us.

4. Does their company culture match yours?

It might sound obvious, but tools are made for people, by people. And the people who create and run your new tool are inevitably going to have an impact on the solution itself. So, don’t underestimate the importance of company culture when considering an ITSM vendor. Ask yourself: What are their employees like? Do their values match yours?

At TOPdesk, we find that our most successful partnerships are built with organizations who also place an emphasis on freedom, trust, and responsibility. Part of our promise to our customers is that we’ll be honest and straightforward about what we can offer and what you can achieve – even if it means occasionally saying ‘no’ to companies who aren’t the best fit.

5. Are they committed to innovation?

An ITSM solution should be an investment for the future, not just a quick fix. While a tool’s features and functions might be perfect for where your organization is at right now, it’s important to pick a vendor that wants to grow with you.

Now is the time to look ahead: Are they committed to innovation? Do they invest time and resources into expanding their software’s capabilities to meet their customers’ needs? Product roadmaps can be a helpful indicator of whether an ITSM vendor is ready for a long-term commitment with your organization.

Based on input from our customers, we’ve spent the last year strengthening our platform’s mobile offering, asset management capabilities, and overall ecosystem. And we’ve got a lot more planned.
For a detailed comparison of different ITSM solutions, you can read our new blog comparing ITSM tools ServiceNow vs. TOPdesk here.

Want more tips and tricks on navigating your search for an ITSM solution?

Hopefully, you now have a clearer picture of what goes into a great ITSM partnership. Finding the best supplier for your organization can be a challenge. But, if you bear these 5 questions in mind when shortlisting, you’ll be able to quickly separate the stopgap solutions from the potential business partners.

Want to know more about ITSM solutions? Check out our handy Buyer’s Guide, which covers every step of the process, from how to create the perfect business case to making that final selection.