Problems and changes are every day events in any computer environment. Problems are recorded through help desk, through automatic alerts, and through individualís direct input of them. There are many changes to be done, often not because they are wanted, but because they are necessary. In todayís computer environment, changes are too often done in an uncontrolled environment and many problems come from uncontrolled, unscheduled changes. There is a close relationship between the problems, the changes, the underlying inventory, and the intended service delivery; to control the quality of the service delivery, problems, changes and inventory must also be controlled. There are many products to choose from that can introduce much-needed controls.
Nevertheless, introducing the controls is not as easy as simply selecting and using a product. Many vendors address only part of the problem, and even if they address multiple parts, they do so without functional integration. More important, there is a very real "people" element that canít be overlooked. Any product chosen should readily fit into peopleís daily activity and should do so with additional benefits. The people element is the most important, because the processes wonít work if the people donít support them.
|There needs to be a single, concise, easily articulated philosophy as a starting point. NMS defines this philosophy as RACK and has developed a product to enable its implementation. RACK provides a structure to support the processes needed to handle the problems and changes related to assets, and deliver the services that depend on them.|
|The RACK philosophy is Responsibility, Accountability, Communication and Knowledge and its basis is that people must not only be made responsible and accountable, they must also be given efficient communication and adequate information to do their job. NMS believes effective service management can be delivered only when this is done.|
|Responsibility.||People who support a computing environment must be made responsible for the tasks allocated to them. This is not a "witch hunt" mentality; it's a pragmatic view. If a person is given a task, then that person is responsible for it.|
|Accountability.||A person who is made responsible for tasks must also be made accountable for those tasks.|
|Communication.||When people are made responsible and accountable, they must quickly be made aware of tasks related to their responsibilities, and be given efficient means to communicate with others about them.|
|Knowledge.||History is a great teacher. It helps with trends and facts. It is thus important to store history and enable people to easily access that knowledge.|
The management of problems, changes, inventories and service is the daily operational activity in a computer environment. To help manage those activities, CrossView has functionally integrated problem, change, service level, and inventory sub-systems. CrossView provides the workflow controls that are needed to ensure that these activities are carried out with a RACK philosophy.