Aggreko Looks to the Cloud to Overhaul Its Global IT and HR Service Desks
The following success story details how Aggreko—a global leader in power, heating and cooling services, and supply of temporary power generation and control equipment—uses Ivanti Service Manager for the Cloud. Their head office in located in Glasgow, UK, and they operate worldwide across 195 centres, employing more than 6,000 people.
Ivanti Service Manager for the Cloud Benefits:
- Centralized global system to cover all service management processes with easy, fast access for users
- Improved user experience and adherence to Service Desk Institute star rating system
- Incident Management, Problem Management, Self- Service, and Change Management modules deliver improved control, visibility, and reduced resolution times with real-time discovery and tracking of issues
- Easy integration of third-party software
- Lower resource overhead
- HR leveraging Service Manager to improve the employee experience with the HR service desk
Tony Deeb is the Service Delivery Manager for Aggreko, a giant supplier of power, cooling, and heating services. Tony describes how Aggreko, after reaching end of life of its existing on-premise solution for IT Service Management (ITSM) tool, faced a stark choice: either move towards a cloud-based solution or upgrade to the latest ITSM on-premise solution.
With a global IT services organisation of 40 technicians offering first-line support to 6,000 employees, Aggreko’s Technology Services (ATS) management team knew it had to make a change. The ATS team sensed that, in line with the company’s cloud-first policy, a centralized approach to service management would drive greater efficiencies and engage more positive user outcomes.
Aggreko’s IT service management pain stemmed from a 10-year usage of an on-premise ITSM solution that had progressively become less fit for purpose. Aggreko, processing over 7,000 tickets monthly, struggled to administer over 3,000 incident categories within maintenance windows as outages became more frequent and response times increased. Classifications were becoming decentralized—leading to poor data quality from which to base IT resource decisions. Aggreko knew it could achieve significant efficiencies in its service management operations, thereby freeing previously tied-up resources to increase focus on areas such as data analytics and business intelligence that could instead drive innovation to maintain a competitive edge.
“We quickly agreed that the new ITSM solution should be cloud-based for smaller management overhead and provide a real-time understanding of IT issues being posed,” Tony details. “It was essential that the winning solution be deployed out-of-the-box to avoid complexity and with our processes already incorporated. We were keen to show immediate productivity gains with an emphasis on increasing web-based self service capabilities to lead to more satisfying user outcomes.”
ATS considered further peer advice through its membership in the Service Desk Institute and partnered with fellow consultant members, Acrinax, to produce a full response requirement document and advise in the selection process. ATS in turn selected the cloud- optimized Ivanti® Service Manager solution to deploy in three stages. Internal workshops rapidly followed that detailed established processes that Ivanti Service Manager had to deliver without customization by Aggreko.
During Phase 1 of the rollout, Incident, Problem, and Self Service modules were deployed. Utilizing a centralized Incident module showed immediate returns within the help desk function. Previously, technicians had over 3,000 categories from which to classify and determine incoming tickets. During its initial planning, ATS found that first-line support regularly used only 1% of these categories—most being rarely used and none deleted. Today, technicians worldwide have access to centrally log incidents and classify against 300 verified conditions. Accurate classification of incidents has provided better real-time data for increased insight and better operations. For example, the service desk can now distinguish between incidents and requests, allowing ATS to quickly utilize ticket data to flag incident trends, and predict and fix repeat incidents faster.
Likewise, the former self-service facility was barely used. Analysis showed it captured just 0.8% of all IT- inbound help requests as it was difficult for end users to categorize and communicate their need. Instead, end users defaulted to emailing ATS directly, whose agents then applied shortcuts on their behalf. Tony, knowing employee ease-of-use within the Self Service module would be critical to future adoption and satisfaction levels, noted the Phase 1 results:
“We made significant progress in Phase 1 by quickly offering an agile service desk that contains just 10% of the classifications. This means that ATS responds faster and more efficiently. Technicians access self- populating categories that cuts time to remediation. And, while we continue to offer end users multi-channel comms, we are finding that use of the new self-service portal is increasing rapidly—up from 0.8% to 10% in the first quarter alone.”
Phase 2 continues to progress rapidly. This phase includes Change Management to centralize change improvements and ultimately include integration of Azure DevOps, with development teams globally set to access approvals and incidents, and standardize change requests in real time. This global access will alleviate the pressures of ATS logging critical changes in SharePoint files.
Lastly, Phase 3 has already commenced with ongoing evaluation, improvement, and accreditation activities. Aggreko is now able to map a three-year formal certification plan with key audit points using the Service Desk Institute’s star rating scheme. In a conscious move away from Service Level Agreements (SLAs) for end users that are hard to define and establish, and then become quickly outdated, Aggreko will gauge internal customer satisfaction through an app-based approach using user happiness indicators. Now, users are prompted to define their experience by answering only four questions, delivering to ATS an experience satisfaction grade between 1 and 5.
Other results continue to impress Aggreko. In the former system, there was no linkage between the ITSM and asset management systems across the global estate. Prior to rollout, ATS requested that Ivanti incorporate its existing third-party asset management database directly with Ivanti Service Manager. This asset integration gives first-line support a distinct advantage in determining likely issues with auto- population of asset details, including: device types, age of machine, and software licences.
A solution that reaches further than IT
Ivanti’s platform usage has permeated outside of IT and into HR, which successfully joined the deployment initiative to replace its current request process. With three global HR helpdesks that modelled IT’s follow- the-sun service levels, HR was keen to replicate IT’s success and transfer HR-related queries from calls and emails onto its own centralized request management system that detailed common employee question areas such as holidays, appraisals, and benefits requests.
“When you are a critical support service within the energy industry, it’s all about maximizing efficiencies,” Tony concludes. “I’m pleased to report that, so far, the move to cloud-based IT service management with Ivanti has been relatively pain-free. With the new system in place, we see and report a better user experience already, with an above-average score for service desk happiness. We look to continue to improve the satisfaction and response-resolution times as we enter Phases 2 and 3."
Note: Aggreko’s results are specific to its total customer environment / experience, of which Ivanti is a part. Individual results may vary based on each customer’s unique environment.