IT service management (ITSM) focuses on the delivery of IT services to customers. It tries to find the best ways to satisfy customers and automate IT services using best practices such as ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) that aligns IT services with the needs of business. Using an ITSM approach, IT departments can also continuously improve the quality of IT services, reduce their costs, and define new services to better serve the business.
ITIL V3 Processes (Wikipedia)
The purpose of enterprise architecture is to align transformation programs to business strategy. With its holistic approach, enterprise architecture connects business and technology. It helps companies improve their IT strategic planning by precisely understanding how IT systems support business objectives. With this approach, practitioners can capture the business strategy, break down the business into multiple capabilities through business architecture. Using IT architecture, they can describe the architecture for applications, technology, and data, in the different phases of transformation and tie it to the business ensuring their alignment to the strategy. It also helps build an IT roadmap by defining the different IT projects that will support business objectives over time. With a clear IT roadmap, IT leaders have a comprehensive view on future IT projects and can plan resources and budget accordingly. This will help tighten the link between strategy and project execution while providing support for quickly evolving business strategies.
In general, enterprise architecture deals with strategic activities and IT planning, while ITSM is about managing operational activities, such as asset discovery, CMDB, ticketing and end-user self-services.
When both practices coexist, enterprise architecture through application portfolio management (APM) or IT Portfolio Management (ITPM) often becomes the system of record for applications because application portfolio management is the primary place for managing applications. It indeed gives a clear view on how applications support business capabilities and hence, company’s objectives, providing enterprise architects with a business value for each application.
View how applications support business capabilities
In the enterprise architecture practice, underlying technology components are also tied to applications, enabling enterprise architects to understand the technical fitness of an application, and whether or not the application needs to be modernized. Using business value and technical fitness, enterprise architects can assess applications, and decide to eliminate, invest, modernize or tolerate applications, therefore rationalizing the application portfolio.
Reciprocally, ITSM is the system of record for technologies since it includes IT asset discovery features and CMDBs. Combining enterprise architecture and ITSM helps populate the EA repository with technologies quickly. Based on this information, enterprise architects determine whether a technology is recommended to be used in IT projects, or on the contrary if a technology is rejected. By doing so, enterprise architects ensure that projects only use the right technologies. It helps standardize the IT landscape leading to increased security as well as economy of scale.
Define whether a technology is expected, accepted or prohibited to standardize the IT landscape
Our HOPEX platform integrates ServiceNow, one of the key players in IT Service Management. Through this integration, HOPEX brings the strategic vision on the IT assets coming from ServiceNow: in HOPEX, IT assets are linked to business capabilities to analyze the impact of a business change and assess their alignment to business objectives. In the platform, enterprise architects can also define technology standards based on their IT policy and share this information to the development team. The platform also provides end-of-support information for every technology component reducing the risk of technology obsolescence. Overall, this integration helps IT departments to improve business alignment while better plan future investments and IT projects.
Reciprocally, by defining the HOPEX platform as a single source of truth for applications, it ensures that ServiceNow has an application inventory that reflects the strategic decisions made.
Integration between ServiceNow and HOPEX
The combined use of ITSM and enterprise architecture creates a virtuous circle of integrated information that helps IT departments drive their strategic and tactical activities.
On the one hand, ITSM supports daily operations and optimizes IT services to customers, on the other hand, enterprise architecture gives the strategic view while helping better plan the IT landscape. When both practices are connected, they retrieve relevant information from each other to optimally drive the change and support business activities.
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