If anyone were to put together a list of technologies with the greatest potential, Artificial Intelligence (AI) would undoubtedly top it. AI is maximizing effective utilization of technology in the workplace and altering the business workflow to its best form.
In fact, ITSM organizations have started using AI to achieve a new level of control and accelerate productivity like never before. Integrating AI technology in IT service management (ITSM) will create a smarter ITSM experience and enhance the way humans get involved with the service management process.
AI can improve ITSM experience in different ways; a basic one being by using AI-driven chatbots to handle low value IT support calls. Chatbots also have the capability to integrate with many of the legacy ITSM tools like ServiceNow, Freshdesk or Jira.
Gartner predicts that by 2020, 55% of all large enterprises will have deployed at least one bot or chatbot in production and AI augmentation will generate $2.9T in business value and recover 6.2B hours of worker productivity by 2021.
Enterprises are increasingly adopting chatbots for improving their business processes. Many B2B enterprises are looking forward to integrate chatbots on ITSM platforms, in order to eliminate traditional approaches and make the service process less complicated, less labor intensive and more cost-effective, all while also giving end users a higher level of customer service during every interaction with the IT service desk.
By implementing chatbots, organizations can witness tremendous benefits in the ITSM system:
- Decrease in number of tickets raised and cost per ticket.
- Fewer calls and shorter call durations.
- Improved response times.
- Enhanced employee productivity.
- Reduced overall operational costs.
Here are key areas in which AI technology is making a positive impact on ITSM:
Point of Entry (Incident/Request Creation)
IT Service Management systems are intended to help out employees at the workplace when affected with system issues. ITSM provides a self-service portal to raise requests and incidents whenever employees have trouble with their systems. Employees are required to fill out the online form to determine whether they are making a service request or an incident.
As per ITIL v3, incidents are split into two categories: service requests and incidents. An incident is an unplanned or unexpected interruption to an IT service which hampers employee work routine. For example, if an employee working on his regular activities encounters an unexpected interruption due to system malfunction or WiFi issue, he will then create an incident which will be attended to by an incident management team, to provide a quick fix.
Service requests are general requests originating from users requesting for something to be provided. For example, a service request can be raised to obtain access to the printer, upgrade to a higher version of a software or replace system components.
Unluckily, many service requests end up being incidents, and many incidents end up being service requests. As a result, service requests and incidents do not get resolved fast enough, subsequently affecting the employee experience.
However, IT service management organizations will continue to depend on human frontline analysts, until these types of challenges are resolved. This is because organizations fear that they might invest more time and money rectifying errors caused by miscommunication.
AI can make a difference here
Integrating AI technology helps to ensure information is accurately interpreted before it is entered into an IT Service Management system.
AI-powered chatbots will enable automated ITSM solutions with the capability to interpret incidents and requests accurately. As AI technology develops, we will see enhanced and personalized employee experience, in addition to improving the efficiency of the IT service management personnel.
Gartner claims that “Chatbots driven by artificial intelligence (AI) will play important roles in interactions with consumers, within the enterprise, and in business-to-business situations.”
Automated Backend Processes
ITSM consists of backend processes that are designed to manage any request or issue entered into the system. Traditionally, these were entered by an analyst or an employee through a self-service portal.
Integrating AI technology in ITSM system can react to any issue based on updated patterns available in its knowledge base. AI-powered ITSM solutions can identify a ticket whether it is a service request or an incident and automatically open without human assistance.
Gartner states that “The next big shift is the convergence of technology products and services to create next-generation service offerings that will include AI platforms.
Further integration of ITSM with every system installed on the network will provide the ability to see much larger patterns, which makes it more efficient to solve issues and reduce human intervention in level 1 issues.
It can investigate the issue and cross-check the data with the IT security solution to find patterns that might explain the problem occurrence. ITSM solution identifies issues, provides insights and predictions about the problem and suggests steps to manage it.
As we move into the future, the AI-powered ITSM solution will be able to automatically correct level 1 issues without support staff involvement. However, human analysts will be engaged in more critical issues which will help increases overall employee efficiency and productivity.
ITSM systems with AI technology will have access to an infinite universe of knowledge that can help improve service management and employee experience. Knowledge-based ITSM solutions with AI will change the way employees ask for help and receive accurate answers to almost any question and in no time.
Since AI technology, including Machine Learning (ML), enables solutions to learn, these solutions will be able to access unlimited amounts of data in trusted knowledge databases and learn patterns that exist within an organization, which help to solve problems more efficiently.
These solutions will also help to solve problems based on infinite amounts of data and document these findings in knowledge databases which can be used by both support employees and data analysts when needed.
They will not only look to knowledge databases to provide answers to IT questions but also be able to provide training, tips and tricks for employees in the form of manuals, images, videos, etc. by applying deep learning techniques.
They will provide more current and relevant documents, and eventually override those created by human analysts. However, until AI is perfected over the next few decades, the human input will be vital for ITSM knowledge systems.
Self-Service For Low-Tier Incidents
In ITSM, a large number of service requests often small issues that don’t take a lot of time to get resolved. These low-tier incidents are quite large in number and force service desk agent to spend time doing repetitive tasks, forcing critical issues to remain on hold. Due to this, employee efficiency gets underutilized, which in turn affects their productivity.
AI technology can help resolve this challenge. AI-driven chatbots can deal with low-tier incidents by proving self-service options. These issues can be addressed by chatbots, thereby saving a lot of time for agents and employees alike. Besides, support agents can work instead on critical issues and maximize efficiency.
Acuvate’s IT Helpdesk bot is an IT self-service request chatbot, built using the powerful bot builder platform, BotCore. It supports IT helpdesk as a virtual assistant, providing real-time alerts and high-speed responses. This bot has 24×7 availability and can easily integrate into existing self-service systems.
The Future of ITSM:
ITSM trends demand businesses to evolve continuously. In the future, ITSM analysts will shift their focus to major incidents (one-to-many), problem management, and change management.
ITSM system provides self-service portals integrated with AI-powered chatbots which resolve the low-tier, low value and level 1 issues without human intervention.
Over time, human involvement for any low tier issues will continue to decrease. And expecting IT analysts to more focused on future business objectives instead of IT objectives.
Leveraging these AI technologies within ITSM creates huge opportunities for businesses to deliver outstanding employee experience. These technologies will amplify human support in real-time to meet the high demands of customers and increase productivity.
Nevertheless, service management will never lose the spotlight on as a result of automation. As long as IT exists, ITSM will still remain the top priority of an organization needs.
If you haven’t adopted this trend already, you might lose big game!
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