The Journey From a Taxing ITSM Solution to a Value-rich Proposition

How ServiceDesk Plus Emerged as the Preferred ITSM Solution for a Cosmetics Manufacturer After Using ServiceNow

About the Company

As one of the world's leading manufacturers of high-end cosmetics, skin care products, and fragrances, this company markets its products internationally through independent beauty consultants spanning more than 20 countries. Equally distributed are its business and IT operations. The company's IT support footprint covers more than a dozen sites across America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region, with its headquarters in California.

After facing difficulties with its managed service provider (MSP) using ServiceNow, the company's IT team decided to bring IT services back to their hands with a powerful yet easy-to-maintain IT service management (ITSM) solution.

The Two Challenges: Accessibility and Visibility

The cosmetics manufacturer's parent group, a German direct sales conglomerate, uses ServiceNow and had outsourced its complete IT management—and most of its subsidiaries'—to an MSP. With the parent company already using ServiceNow, it created an instance for its leading skin care brand's IT support, also controlled by the conglomerate's MSP.

While this arrangement worked at times, there was a considerable lag for the cosmetics brand when trying to generate reports, alter processes, and retrieve information about its IT services. The IT team also required better visibility into their IT environment's current state to be aware of drops in service quality.

This sparked the plan to bring control of ITSM back into the hands of the cosmetics brand's IT team. However, the team was unsure of using ServiceNow again, as the solution was more suitable to manage a conglomerate's IT estate than a cosmetics brand's IT environment. The tool also had an exorbitant licensing model, not to mention further implementation costs.

Along with the change in admin control, the cosmetics brand decided to replace its ITSM solution from ServiceNow with a solution that could replicate all the functions the company was using with ServiceNow without being resource-intensive.

The Search for Sensibility and ServiceDesk Plus

The cosmetics manufacturer required a tool that was scalable, easy to maintain, and primarily served as a function-to-function replacement for ServiceNow without demanding steep licensing fees and implementation costs.

The company's IT team was keen on an ITSM tool that offered a range of capabilities, including custom workflows, SLA management, and rule-based automations, along with core ITSM requirements, such as incident, service request, problem, change, knowledge, and service catalog management.

Additionally, the team required the tool to have a bi-directional integration with their parent conglomerate's ServiceNow instance since certain processes include escalations and approvals through its parent company. The company also uses SAP for procurement management and SysAid for the internal needs of a few teams, so it needed its ITSM solution to exchange data seamlessly with its internal tools as well.

After researching and evaluating multiple solutions, including FreshService and EasyVista, the IT team's requirements were met by ManageEngine's flagship cloud-based ITSM suite, ServiceDesk Plus.

The enterprise edition of ServiceDesk Plus Cloud stood out for the cosmetics brand's IT team because of its ability to scale, customizable workflows, functional ITIL® practices out of the box, integration capabilities, and approachable price point—which was approximately 33 percent of the cosmetics brand's ServiceNow license cost.

Easing the Cumbersome Onboarding and Offboarding Processes

Onboarding and off-boarding workflow

The cosmetics manufacturer, being in the skin care and beauty industry, partners with more than 500,000 consultants worldwide to sell products directly to customers. Apart from consultants, the company also hires permanent and contract employees—labeled internal and external users, respectively, by its IT team. These three groups of employees each have unique requirements that are further diversified according to their role and department.

To simplify the laborious exercise involved in onboarding and offboarding a large number of people, the cosmetics brand designed its onboarding and offboarding workflows using ServiceDesk Plus.

The company's user onboarding begins with an HR executive initiating a service request ticket by filling in the new hire details, which includes the type of employee (internal, external, or consultant) and whether they need an Active Directory (AD) account. Once the ticket is submitted, an approval request is automatically sent to the specific site's manager, barring which the request gets denied while automatically notifying the HR executive.

Once approved, the request ticket simultaneously assigns the AD admittance activities to the parent company's service desk; the workspace and identity badge preparation tasks to the facilities team; and the IT asset allocation to the cosmetics brand's IT support. The IT support team makes their asset allocation work easier by filling in the asset requirements in a separate section within the ticket. Using field and form rules, this separate section is hidden from non-IT teams to avoid any interference.

The cosmetics brand's IT asset policy allows for provisioning of hardware and software that are not listed in the company's regular inventory. These assets are labeled non-standard assets and require additional approvals before being provisioned.

While ServiceDesk Plus offers approvals that get triggered once when a request is submitted, the skin care brand's non-standard asset policy required a second layer of approvals with six levels, starting from the department manager for low-cost assets and up to the parent group's board for expensive, non-standard asset requisitions.

ServiceDesk Plus was flexible enough to accommodate this multilayered approval mechanism. Once the onboarding request is submitted, a linked request with pre-populated information about the assets is initiated. This automation was designed using the low-code scripts in the built-in Integrated Development Environment (IDE) of ServiceDesk Plus.

When IT and facilities have completed their tasks, the request template is sent back to an HR executive who finalizes the details and decides if the new user requires SAP application access. If the access is deemed necessary, another linked request with a two-stage approval is triggered and sent to the SAP admins and directors. This automated creation of a linked request with pre-populated SAP approvals and tasks was configured with ServiceDesk Plus' low-code scripts. Post approval, the SAP-related tasks are assigned to the procurement desk managed by the parent company's MSP.

The onboarding request comes to a close after SAP access is provided to the new user. The cosmetics brand was able to configure automated notifications throughout these various steps to keep relevant stakeholders notified of the ticket status.

With ServiceDesk Plus' ability to create support groups for multiple teams, the cosmetics brand's HR, IT, and facilities departments are able to collaborate efficiently to prevent tasks from falling between the cracks during the numerous hiring and relieving processes. Looking to standardize and accelerate the frequent onboarding and offboarding processes across all regions, the IT team accomplished that objective using ServiceDesk Plus' onboarding workflows that connect multiple departments within the organization.

Maintaining Service Standards with Incident Management

The IT department was able to swiftly configure incident management for their company's environment thanks to ServiceDesk Plus' out-of-the-box functionality. The ability to have predefined values, such as categories and items, configured on the templates, and also dynamically alter the form fields according to user input, brought ease into the minutiae of the company's service desk support.

The cosmetics brand created multiple templates to address more than 100 types of recurring incidents in its applications and infrastructure, including managing SAP, SharePoint, network hardware, storage, and network security. End users are given role-based and site-based access to the templates, thereby hiding irrelevant templates from end users and avoiding misguided requests.

To ensure incidents are effectively and rapidly resolved across 14 locations in three continents, the cosmetics business is able to manage its comprehensive set of service-level agreements (SLAs) with ServiceDesk Plus. The SLAs, specific to each of the company's incident categories (such as infrastructure management and SAP application management), are triggered according to the response and resolution times. The response time and resolution time vary according to the priority level of the incident, as well as whether the user is a VIP.

Disentangling Complex Change Management with Visual Workflows

The cosmetics brand's IT team regularly handles IT security updates, service performance improvements, patch management, firewall upgrades, and more to optimize its IT estate spanning multiple countries. To deploy these IT changes in a procedural manner that minimizes risk, the IT team classifies its changes as normal, standard, or emergency changes. Each of these types of changes demand their own process with different stakeholder groups and the right measure of supervision and recommendations from different roles within the organization.

The company was also able to streamline its various types of changes by creating change workflows specific to the IT team's requirement on a graphical workflow builder. The visual representation of the company's process guided the cosmetics brand in patching the process gaps and flaws that were concealed earlier.

The cosmetics brand was also satisfied with being able to use the change management module right out of the box. ServiceDesk Plus allows users to configure eight stages for a change to pass through for effective deployment. The company leveraged these eight stages, from submission, planning, and CAB evaluation up to user acceptance testing (UAT), release, review, and closure.

The company was able to configure notifications to be sent to the involved stakeholders at each specific stage. For instance, a newly submitted change would require the company's "Tower lead level" review, which was configured with user groups. The workflow automatically notifies only these roles for review. Similarly, the company's process dictates a coordinated effort between the implementation team and UAT team, and the two teams are thoroughly kept in the loop only after the change passes through the implementation, UAT, and release stages.

The IT team set five levels of closure codes to describe the success of a completed change. ServiceDesk Plus' change management module perfectly aligns with the company's change process and also offers the right level of personalization.

Conclusion: The Search for Value and Capability Ends with ServiceDesk Plus

The resource-intensive nature of ServiceNow kick-started the cosmetics manufacturer's journey to find a scalable, agile, and powerful ITSM solution. Its IT team is happy with ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus, as it has replicated all the required functions of ServiceNow without the bloated licensing model and implementation cost.

During the company's migration to ServiceDesk Plus, it rediscovered the value of something being more than the sum of its parts´┐Ż with each module implementation. With the visual workflow, the company was able to identify its process gaps and flaws and change its business process to increase productivity.

ServiceDesk Plus has enabled the cosmetics brand to include automation wherever possible to accelerate the company's efforts. The product's restrictive privileges make managing a border-defying user base easier. And ServiceDesk Plus' comprehensive SLA management always keeps the company's service quality in check.

Satisfied with ServiceDesk Plus' IT service capabilities, the company plans to move its non-IT services from HR and facilities to dedicated, fully functional portals with Enterprise Service Management (ESM) in ServiceDesk Plus. The ESM feature will enable the company to provide an even more direct and simplified service experience to its end users within the proven ITSM best practice framework.

After a swift and successful migration to ServiceDesk Plus, the company's initial paradigm of ServiceDesk Plus as a replacement to ServiceNow transformed to ServiceDesk Plus being the better alternative to ServiceNow.

About ServiceDesk Plus

ServiceDesk Plus, ManageEngine's flagship ITSM product, verified by Pink Elephant as compatible with industry best practices, is used by ITSM professionals worldwide. With industry certified best practice ITSM functionality, easy-to-use capability and native mobile apps, ServiceDesk Plus helps IT support teams deliver world-class service to end users on the go with reduced costs and complexity. Leveraging the latest technology and available in both cloud and on-premises versions, it comes in three editions and is available in 37 different languages. Over 100,000 organizations across 185 countries trust ServiceDesk Plus to optimize IT service desk performance and be future ready with their IT service management operations. For more information about ServiceDesk Plus, please visit www.manageengine.com/service-desk.

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