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Why Social Media is important for ITIL and ITSM practitioners

Life will never be the same again! I remember the day in the last century when I purchased my first mobile phone so I could continue the conversations with my clients while I was stuck in one of many traffic jams in The Netherlands.  I also remember that most of my consultancy clients didn’t have email addresses, although there was inter-company electronic mail and those big yellow internal mail envelopes for paper memos etc. To connect with clients you used the phone or fax.

fast forward to 2009:

Our current clients have email addresses, a skypeID, google chat, twitter accounts, a facebook or myspace page, a google Wave account and everybody always talks on their mobile computer (isn’t it amazing that the Apple iPhone has this cool apps that you can download so you can even make phone calls with it?)

So what did I do? Over the past few months I have been more and more active with social media for . For one reason: we want to continue to create  long-lasting relationship with our clients and course participants.

For me this is natural and logical: Our clients discuss important and urgent issues on twitter and facebook (as well as the not so important but still urgent), so where are there to answer their questions and to engage in the conversation.

So how has the interaction changed?

  1. I have my own twitter account . I use this account to share my research findings, ideas, comments and general communication around , , Cloud Computing, Business Management and personal ‘stuff’
  2. Because not everybody is interested in my thoughts and rants, I also create a corporate twitter account to discuss our events, programs, products and generic information.
  3. I started promoting my mobile phone number on my business card and email signature again to encourage clients to speak with me directly, rather than going through my PA.
  4. I have a personal SkypeID, and the company has a corporate SkypeID so nobody has to feel they can’t connect with a client at the other end of the world
  5. The Art of Service has a corporate blog, posts ideas and links on posterous
  6. We encourage people to send in their questions and requests for help via the forms on our websites
  7. and of course there are the multiple of RSS feeds, Digg and delicious bookmarks, the hyves and Linkedin profiles

So when I look back at my first years as an ITIL and ITSM practitioner and compare it with the current situation – I would say that social media is a must for every ITIL and ITSM consultant or practitioner who wants to stay connected with the industry, their clients, peers and colleagues.

The way we did business 20 or 30 years ago doesn’t work (as well) anymore, we can’t stop growing… if you don’t use social media yet… change, and embrace it!

0 thoughts on “Why Social Media is important for ITIL and ITSM practitioners”

  1. Re Wave: I hope it proves useful. It does look very interesting. As always the devil will be in the details. Even after 5-10 years I’m still seeing enough problems with effectively using email/web as communication channels for support that I sometimes vacillate between: 1. let’s blow it all up and just start from scratch with something new and 2. let’s not introduce anything new until we get this mess figured out.

    Neither of which is the right answer, I know.

    Or is it? ; )

    I’m especially interested in E2.0 and Social Media integration with respect to service & support delivery. We need end-to-end solutions or we’re just asking for more trouble — internally and for customers.

    Will be very interested to hear of any trials you have with Wave.

    Thanks again,

  2. Hi Ivanka,

    Seems you’re truly on top of leveraging SM goodness to serve your clients. Great tips for any business — ITSM or otherwise.

    I wonder about Social Media as a facilitator(or not) of ITSM processes/functions themselves. If, at the core, these are collaboration and communication tools(IMHO) then it would obviously seem to have a place somewhere. A related area, Enterprise 2.0(E20), especially.

    We obviously have incidents and service requests being reported this way. Maybe event monitoring tools tweeting? Or twit-streaming CAB meetings? Hmmm…ok, so I might not subscribe to that feed ; )

    But will be interesting to see how SM and E20 permeate ITSM.

    Seattle, WA

    1. Twitter stream for CAB meetings?!?! Wow – you are a brave person! (and no – I would not want to subscribe to that feed either).

      We already receive incidents and service request by SMS, pages for availability and capacity threshold issues.. so I am sure we can leverage the social media opportunities for this benefit.

      Personally, I am very interested to see what (and how) Google Wave might impact on our clients support communication…