Select a Service IT Solution

The current situation

A global manufacturer of medical instruments had defined a number of strategic objectives for their
service business:

  1. Grow the service business in terms of revenue and profitability
  2. Improve the productivity of its service operations
  3. Improve customer and employee satisfaction
  4. Select a future proof Service Management solution that enables business objectives, fits with the
    corporate IT architecture strategy
  5. Replace unsupported service management tools as soon as possible

Noventum was requested to assist in defining the functional scope and constraints and provide the information needed for the company to be able to select the best suited Service Management software product to replace the existing service management tools.

The challenge

The company had a centralised IT strategy and it had already a strategic decision made for a CRM and an ERP platform.

The tool used to support the service processes was custom developed on top of ERP and the platform it was running on was soon to be unsupported. As a result, a new service management solution was needed, and they needed it fast. The custom developed solution met many of their specific functional needs but because there was no global standardised process and way of working with the tool, it was difficult to exactly define the requirements for the new service management solution.

The longlist of potential solutions is rather overwhelming and without having the knowledge of the service management solution market, evaluating all those products and reducing the number of candidates to a shortlist is a time-consuming task.

The plan was to request the vendors on a shortlist and respond to an RFP, evaluate the responses and then invite the top two vendors for a more detailed presentation and demonstration. Without the right level of knowledge and experience with these products, it was hard for the company to challenge the vendors and thoroughly evaluate to what extent the product and architecture met the requirements and the IT related constraints.

Due to the lack of knowledge of the Service Management software market, insufficient understanding of the required functionality and the short timeframe in which a decision needed to be made, the company turned to Noventum for assistance.

What was done?

The first step was to determine the business scope and requirements that the new service management solution must support. This is determined by the nature of the current and future services, the business sales and delivery model (processes and organisation) and potential improvement opportunities. Using an online survey amongst service staff the current performance was analysed and improvement opportunities identified.

During the first of a two-day interactive workshop with key service staff from all over the globe, these opportunities were discussed and the processes that needed to be supported were determined. The Service Capability and Performance standards and Noventum’s best practices were used as a framework for this.

On the second day the functional scope was determined, and the participants captured the functional requirements for each of the functional domains in scope. This could be done in one day by using Noventum’s Functional Reference Architecture for Service which provides a framework and pre-defined set of requirements.

The second step consisted of identifying the IT constrains by assessing the current IT architecture, IT strategy and roadmap. This resulted in a set of technical constraints and non-functional requirements that needed to be applied when selecting a solution.

The third step was to determine a shortlist of enterprise class service management software products that could potentially meet the key function and non-functional requirements and don’t conflict with the constraints. This resulted in a list of four products.

The purpose of the fourth step was to evaluate the four products on the shortlist. An RFP was prepared and send to the four vendors on the shortlist. After the evaluation of the responses, the vendors that scored the best were invited for a presentation and demonstration of their solution. Noventum assisted in preparing demo scenarios, identifying questions and challenging the answers provided.

An important aspect of a proper evaluation is to talk to organisations that have already completed an implementation and can share their experience and lessons learned. Noventum helped to arrange reference visits and accompanied the company during these visits to be able to raise the right questions in the context of the requirements and scope of the company.

After completion of all the evaluation activities and having collected all the input, Noventum conducted a Risk-Benefit Analysis. This is a decision matrix that shows for each product to what extent it is able to meet the requirements and is capable of enabling the company to meet their business objectives and bring value. It also shows the risk level for implementation and the TCO associated with each product.

This allowed the company to make a well-founded decision in which service management product hits the best balance between value and benefits vs risks and costs.


The company mentioned that the project helped them to thoroughly determine the scope and requirements in a relatively short time, something that would have taken them several months to complete with the involvement of many resources. As a side-effect, the workshops helped the global service organisation to become more aware of each other’s way of working, operational issues and understand in which areas they are different from each other or quite similar. As a teambuilding activity this was also very useful.

“With the support of Noventum and following a 7 step approach in
selecting a Field Service management Solution (FSM) we were able to
manage through the complexities and avoid the pitfalls and effectively
select an optimum end to end FSM solution that would meet our current
and future service business needs and objectives
” - Head of Service

By using Noventum’s knowledge of the service management software market and what is needed to be able to run a service business and the tools and frameworks that Noventum uses to support this, the company was able to evaluate a limited number of solutions without the need to go through a lengthy RFI phase. In a relatively short time period, with limited effort needed from their own resources and with acceptable costs, the company had all the information needed to make a well-founded decision. A structured approach to selecting and evaluating Service Management Solutions

A structured approach to selecting and evaluating Service Management Solutions

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