Consideration No. 6: Change of Ownership

By Vance F. Brown  |  Posted 2011-01-18 Print this article Print

Consideration No. 6: Change of ownership

For IT service desk solution companies, constant change of ownership and focus on "exit strategies" have shifted their priorities from satisfying customers to growing a customer base and then selling the company. This change in priorities results in industry confusion, with many leading vendors changing ownership multiple times over short time frames.

Many of these newly formed companies push clients to more expensive product lines and phase out or decrease R&D for the less expensive products. How does this alter your choice of service desk provider? Look at their product lines and code bases, with a clear view of how multiple changes of ownership might dilute their product. Lean towards those firms that exhibit clear focus and stability.

Consideration No. 7: Dedicated following of ITIL best practices

Dedicated following of ITIL best practices require that every IT request is tracked and recorded. A 20-second customer call asking for a reset password should be tracked. With modern technology, it's possible to run the program to reset the password, create incident fields, and send the user a confirmation e-mail with just one click.

A hundred undocumented "small" tasks in a day result in perceived department inefficiencies by management. "Known problems" should also be automated, with incidents that can be created in seconds and all future inquiries into that issue should receive automated resolution. Don't purchase a system that can't handle automation of routine or redundant tasks.

Vance F. Brown is CEO of Cherwell Software. Vance has been involved in the IT service industry for over 10 years. From 1996 to 2000, Vance was president and CEO of GoldMine Software Corporation (formerly Bendata and currently FrontRange Solutions). Vance graduated from Wake Forest University, summa cum laude, with degrees in Economics and Computer Science. He graduated from law school, with honors, from the University of North Carolina, finishing as a member of the Order of the Coif and the Law Review. He can be reached at

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