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4 min read

Best Customer Service Management Examples: Improving the Customer Experience

By Staff Writer on 6/28/22 1:31 PM

In a world where customer service has become increasingly important. It's more vital than ever to have a customer service management strategy in place.

Using a customer service management platform makes the difference in how customers can connect to your brand. In fact, 95% of customers said that quality customer service makes them feel more connected to a company.

If you're on the fence about using a customer service management platform, look at these customer service management examples to see how  technology is improving the customer experience.

Examples of How Technology is Improving Customer Service Management

Various software and tools can be leveraged within your customer service management strategy to improve the customer experience. Here are a few examples of how technology is improving the ways businesses can manage the customer service experience.

Self-Service Portals

Not all customers want to wait on the phone for answers to their most important questions. This is where a self-service portal comes into play. Self-service portals make it easier for customers to find the answers to the questions they need easily. 

Self-service portals are websites that offer up both information and resources which empower users to find answers they need to resolve their issues. By collecting relevant information and resources in one place, users can troubleshoot existing issues before needing to reach out. On top of that, they can create tickets and review self-help articles to reduce call volume and optimize customer experience. 

If they can’t find what they are looking for in the self-help articles, they can then continue to log a ticket or make a service request to get dedicated support. The self-service portal can capture specific information based on a type of request to pass along to your customer service team to help them route the ticket and expedite resolution.

Third-Party CRM Software and Sales Tools

Another example of how technology is improving the customer experience is its ability to integrate customer service management platforms with other existing customer relationship management (CRM) softwares and sales tools, such as:

  • SalesForce
  • Zoho
  • Monday
  • HubSpot

When customer service integrates with CRM software, businesses can completely view the customer journey. From start to finish, customer service representatives can see every touchpoint a customer has had with your company. This makes achieving a 360-degree view of your customers and providing them with the best customer service possible.

Case Management Capability

Case management allows customer service representatives to see every customer interaction in one place. This way, they can provide a more cohesive customer experience by having all the information they need in one spot.

What's more, case management gives businesses the ability to create workflows and processes that are tailored to their specific needs. This means customer service representatives can work more efficiently and resolve complex and simple customer issues faster.

For example, if you're a customer service representative who regularly deals with service delivery, you can create a workflow that includes all the steps necessary to handle the process. This allows you to ensure that each service delivery is handled consistently and efficiently, saving you time and money.

Data Collection Tools

Data collection tools allow businesses to get insights into what customers like and don't like about their experience.

Data collection tools, such as surveys, social media, analytics, registration and subscriptions, can help businesses identify areas where they need to improve. For example, if you notice that many customers are unhappy with your service delivery or the sales process, you can use this information to make changes to your process. Being able to pinpoint where and when issues arise in your existing processes can help you tailor and build a better way to work.

With data collection, you can be sure that you're making the changes that will have the biggest impact on your business. Predictive analysis becomes possible in that once you have collected enough data, you can predict and learn behavior. When a certain kind of request comes in, you’ll know how to jump in to answer. By asking questions in your self-service portal, you can even use existing interactions to provide possible solutions to customers.

Improved Contract Management Systems 

One of the most frustrating and outdated aspects of customer service is the contract process. Customer service management platforms have made this process obsolete by offering better contract management systems.

With a contract management system, businesses can create and manage customer contracts in one place. Additionally, modern customer service management platforms allow users to create unique ticket types and categories which can assist in organizing and optimizing their processes. All of this adds up to customer service representatives being able to quickly find the information they need without having to search through multiple tickets.

Implement These Customer Service Management Examples with Vivantio

Technology is making customer service management more efficient and convenient through self-service, third-party CRM and sales tool integration, case management, data collection, and improved contract management . As a result, more businesses can take advantage of and improve their customer experiences.

If you're ready to get on board, Vivantio, a customer service management platform, offers a wide variety of customer service management features that were explained before, such as:

  • Case management
  • Automatic customer surveys
  • Consolidated customer views
  • Countless third-party integrations


For more than two decades, Vivantio has been helping clients optimize their service organizations by leveraging a unified service management platform. To find out how Vivantio can help you put these customer service management examples into practice, contact our team today or register for a free demo.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Management
4 min read

What Is Customer Service Management and Why Your Business Needs It

By Staff Writer on 6/24/22 8:00 AM

The results are in. Customer service is a major driver of a company’s sales and revenue potential. About 70% of a customer’s journey is based on how well they’re being treated. If you're running a growing company, you can't afford to continue utilizing only manual customer relations like speaking on the phone or through a chat portal.

With customer service management, you can invigorate the growth of your company by improving the way your customers interact with you. This can result in higher retention rates and help your brand become a household name in your industry. 

So, what is customer service management and why exactly is it important for companies to implement. Below, we’ll provide you with all the answers.

What Is Customer Service Management?

At its core, customer service is the act of taking care of a customer's needs. This could be handling service requests, addressing their concerns, or providing a solution to their pain points.

Customer service management is the process of handling customer service requests and inquiries in an automated way. This can be done through various means such as customer support software, live chat, phone support, or email.

Quality customer service management systems will automate most of the manual tasks associated with customer service so that your team can focus on more important tasks.

For example, a typical customer service management system will allow you to:

  • Facilitate customer self-help, reducing the burden on the service team for simple tasks
  • Optimize service delivery through workflow, business rules and automation
  • Create a knowledge base of FAQs that customers can reference
  • Assign and route tickets to the appropriate team member
  • Monitor performance metrics to identify areas for improvement

Why Your Business Needs Customer Service Management

Customer service management is a critical component of any organization's growth. If you're new to the concept, here is why you should use a customer service management platform for your company.

Are You Customer-Centric or Internally Centric?

Using a customer service management platform promotes correlates into running a customer-centric organization. A customer-centric organization is one that focused on the best interest of the customer. This includes continuously listening to customers and adapting to their demands instead of chasing profits.

On the other hand, internally centric organizations are more interesting in improving their bottom lines than servicing their customers. Let’s use an example. Let’s say you are in a clothing store and approach the rgister with your items.

Instead of greeting you or asking how they could help, the sales associate asks if you would like to opt into one of their upcoming promotions. This is a clear example of a company that bases their customer service model on maximizing profits instead of customer satisfaction. 

habits of customer centric organizations

An ideal customer service management system will help you keep track of every customer interaction and ensure that they're all positive, allowing you to focus on making your current customers happy. 

The Importance of Customer Service to B2B Organizations

Customer service provided by a CSM platform provides a variety of lucrative benefits for B2B organizations. The first benefit is customer retention. 

It costs more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. If you're not focusing on improving your company's customer service, you're missing out on a major opportunity to create continuity in your sales pipeline.

Next, quality customer service undoubtedly improves customer satisfaction. This leads to customers being more likely to recommend your products or services to others, which can help you acquire new customers through word-of-mouth marketing.

Happy customers tend to spend more money with the companies to which they're loyal. In fact, 93% of customers are willing to make repeat purchases with companies that offer exceptional customer service.

Customer service can also impact the lifetime value of incoming customers. The lifetime value is the total amount of money that a customer spends with your company over the course of their relationship with you.

Using a customer service management platform can help your business leverage continued service improvement to keep your customers satisfied and coming back for more. Finally, customer service has reputational consequences.

Just one bad customer service experience can lead to the loss of a customer. But that's not all—it can also damage your company's reputation, making it harder to acquire new customers.  Providing quality customer service can help you build a positive reputation that will make it easier to attract new business. 

Learn How Customer Service Management Can Impact Your Business

The importance of customer service management can’t be overstated. If you don’t optimize your company’s customer service, your competitors will take advantage. Using a customer service management platform will ultimately allow you to streamline your customer service operations, boost satisfaction and improve your customer experience. This will have a massive positive impact on your bottom line. 

For more than two decades, Vivantio has been helping clients optimize their service organizations by leveraging a unified service management platform. To find out how Vivantio can help you understand what is customer service management is, contact our team today or register for a free demo.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Management
6 min read

How Customer Service Management Platforms Are Leading the B2B Customer Experience

By Staff Writer on 6/23/22 8:00 AM

The value of exceptional customer service is undeniable. People will stay loyal to companies that provide incredible customer service. If you’re running a growing organization, the first thing that needs to be evaluated is your customer service model. 

This is where customer service management (CSM) platforms come into play. These helpful solutions allow companies to use workflows to streamline operations, improve customer satisfaction, and boost brand loyalty. In the B2B space, customer service management platforms can make the greatest difference. 

Why is Customer Service Management Important?

The importance of customer service management comes down to customer-centricity. There are two types of companies: customer centric and internally centric. 

Customer centric companies value their customers and offer solutions that will benefit them, even if it's not in their best interest. Internally centric companies are more focused on making sales rather than meeting demands.

Customer service management platforms help companies embrace internal customer centricity. By streamlining critical customer service operations, organizations can better assist customers and improve satisfaction. Customer service management is also key for the following reasons:

Customer Service Management Heightens Customer Retention

Canceling a service is easy these days. With the click of a button, customers can end their subscription to your product or service unless there is a long term contract involved. To prevent this, you need to give customers a reason to stick around.

Utilizing a customer service management platform makes it easier for customers to get in touch with you and have their complex issues or requests resolved more quickly. As a result, they'll be more likely to continue using your product or service.

Customer Service Management Decreases Costs

The goal of any business is to increase profits while minimizing overhead costs. In the customer service department, this means reducing the time spent on each support case.

A customer service management platform allows agents to find answers to common customer questions quickly. This way, they can resolve support cases rapidly and move on to the next one.

Customer Service Management Platforms Can Improve Company Reputations

People are quick to share their experiences with a company, whether they’re good or bad. Approximately 67% of people will consider leaving an online review based on a positive experience. 

However, 40% of them will leave a bad review after an unsatisfactory experience. If you’re affected, new prospects won’t give your brand a second look. Since consumers perform a lot of research before settling on a business, strong customer testimonials and reputations are essential to continual business success. 

Regardless of the customer experience you provide, your customer base will have something to say about it online. Using a Customer Service Management platform will go a long way in building a positive company public reputation. 

By efficiently handing customer cases and automating accurate responses, companies can use CSMs to elevate their reputation and draw more of their target audience. 

Don’t Leave Room for Competitors

There’s no room for complacency in any industry. If you don’t continuously strive to improve your company, your competitors will quickly take advantage. It is said 89% of companies believe they compete with each other to deliver the best customer experience.

The same is true for customer service. If you don’t optimize your customer service department, your competitors will. They’ll attract your customers with promises of better support and quicker issue resolution. Optimizing your customer service department can be done by:

  • Using live chat support to quickly address customer needs
  • Providing self-help through customer service portals to allow customers to find answers to their problems without the need to contact the customer service team
  • Proactively requesting customer feedback to improve customer service
  • Personalizing each customer experience using CSM data
  • Exceeding customer expectations with prompt and friendly service

Don't ignore the need to implement a customer service management platform. Your entire business may depend on it.

How CSM Technology Can Help Your Customer Service Team

A customer service management platform is a worthwhile investment for your customer service team. By streamlining important customer service operations,, CSM technology can also provide:

A 360 Holistic View of Every Customer

Keeping tabs on a customer throughout every customer service touchpoint is critical in meeting their needs and ultimately retaining them. This is only possible with a customer service management platform.

With a CSM system, you have all the information you need about a customer in one place. This information includes vital insights from your CRM, sales automation process, DevOps, and relevant financial information. 

Has their contract expired? Is a vital system down? Have they constantly complained about the same service?

With a customer service management platform, you can provide them with the best possible experience by addressing their individual needs, directing them to the right department, and eliminating customer service department silos in the process.

Fully Integrated Knowledge Base

Your customer service team can’t be expected to know the answer to every single customer question. However, they can be expected to know where to find the answer.

With a CSM system, you can provide your team with the knowledge they need to resolve support cases quickly. In addition, by automating common customer questions, you can free up your team's time so they can focus on more complex issues.

Omnichannel Interactions

Your customers should be able to reach you through their preferred channels, whether that’s via a self-help portal, email, phone, social media, or live chat.

A customer service management platform makes it possible for your team to interact with customers through multiple channels. This also includes using a self-help portal. Self-help portals allow customers to interact with your brand to find the answers to important questions. If they can’t find the answer, they can raise a ticket and get the help they need. 

As a result, they can provide the best possible experience, no matter how they choose to get in touch.

Predictive Analysis

A good customer service team is always looking for ways to improve. With a CSM system, you can use predictive analysis to find potential areas of improvement.

By analyzing customer interactions, you can identify patterns and trends. This way, you can prevent issues before they happen and keep every customer interaction positive.

Customer Service Centralization

A customer service management platform provides a centralized hub for all your departments that intersect with customer service, such as DevOps, IT, Finance, and HR. 

By placing tabs on all these interactions. , you can keep track of every customer interaction and make sure nothing falls through the cracks.

In addition, centralization makes it easier for your team to find the information they need. They can quickly resolve support cases and provide the best possible experience with everything in one place.

Insights and Analytics

A CSM system can provide valuable insights and analytics that you can use to improve your customer service. By tracking key performance indicators, such as first contact resolution rate and average handle time, you can identify areas of improvement.

In addition, you can use customer surveys to collect feedback and get a pulse on customer sentiment. This way, you can proactively address any issues and make sure your customers are happy.

Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

Manually, dealing with SLAs can be challenging, especially if each agreement is complex and unique. Using a customer service management solution can help organizations manage complex SLAs, get to customer responses faster, and fix unnecessary issues that can slow down the entire process. 

Learn More About Customer Service Management Platforms

If there were ever a way to automate operations to improve service efficiency, a CSM platform would be the perfect tool. Using a customer service management platform can help B2B organizations ultimately improve customer experiences.

If you’re operating in a competitive market where any slight advantage will prevail, using a CSM can help you elevate your customer experiences and take a competitive advantage. This is where Vivantio comes into play. 

Vivantio leverages a customer service management platform to help companies:

  • Consolidate customer views into one central platform
  • Automate the business process to improve efficiency and provide faster, better service
  • To understand if they are truly providing excellent service through monitoring of SLAs and customer surveys
  • Access helpful reports and analytics to improve customer service look for bottlenecks or areas where service can be improved

For more than two decades, Vivantio has been helping clients optimize their service organizations by leveraging a unified service management platform. To find out how Vivantio can help you take advantage of customer service management platforms, contact our team today or register for a free demo.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Management
3 min read

The Benefits of ITSM Optimization Strategies are moving beyond IT

By Greg Rich on 3/25/21 3:17 PM

Industries from energy grids to law firms are rapidly waking up to the tangible benefits of amping-up their customer service capabilities—with a focus on evidence-based methodologies. The smartest Industry 4.0 players are realizing that lessons from the IT world provide a ready-made blueprint for Service Optimization.

Leveraging a proven approach to service (ITIL 4)

Over the past three decades, there has been significant work undertaken to systematically identify and analyze best practices for service provision.

Based on the work by the famous efficiency guru W. Edwards Demming, the ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) framework was introduced by the UK Government’s Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) nearly 40 years ago— and has been continually revised and updated on an ongoing basis.

This evidence-based evolution has helped develop and refine practices that are relevant and proven effective—not only inside technology environments but well beyond.

In 2019, the latest iteration, ITIL 4, formally and deliberately expanded in focus beyond IT in order to help facilitate the implementation and adoption of agile principles across all types of service organizations—opening up more teams to this fundamental change that enables the kind of value co-creation sought by modern businesses of all description.

Getting started, often begins with a hard look at an organization's progress along the five key elements of Service Optimization. (See figure.)


Service
STRATEGY
Service
Design
Service
Transition
Service
Operation
Continual
Service
Improvement
  • Strategy Management
  • Service Portfolio Management
  • Financial Management
  • Demand & Capacity Management
  • Business Relationship Management
  • Design Coordination
  • Service Catalogue Management
  • Risk Management
  • Service Level Management
  • Capacity Management
  • Availability Management
  • IT Service Continuity
  • IT Security
  • Compliance
  • Architecture Management
  • Supplier Management
  • Change Management and Evaluation
  • Knowledge Management
  • Service Asset and Configuration Management
  • Release and Deployment Management
  • Incident and Request Fulfillment Management
  • Problem Management
  • Technical Management
  • In-Service Review
  • Process Evaluation

 

A faster path to ITIL 4 best practices:  The right Service Management Platform

One of the major challenges that will arise in an ITIL 4 initiative is connecting a large organizations' disparate data systems in order to allow service organizations to provide this new level of transparency and real-time response.

Vivantio addresses this challenge by serving as a unique Unified Service Management Platform that sits atop all of your current systems—integrated with flexible APIs—to quickly and cost-effectively supply the essential connectivity and holistic visibility. This provides service teams with a 360 degree view of all customer interactions from across the business which contains key data points to elevate service and response times.

The good news for any skeptics is that plenty of evidence points to the bottom-line benefits of Service Optimization Solutions. And Vivantio has the track-record and references to substantiate its bold claims for tying-together B2B enterprises for maximum service success.

To learn more or request a live demo, click here.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Management
1 min read

Vivantio Releases New Service Optimization Guide for B2B Enterprises

By Staff Writer on 3/2/21 3:00 AM

New service optimization guide underscores need to meet elevated customer expectations.

Vivantio has launched a new guide, "Leveraging Breakthrough Service to Transform Your B2B Enterprise." The comprehensive guide identifies the distinct benefits of centralizing customer service and offers B2B business owners a detailed process for implementing it at their organization, inclusive of proven strategies for overcoming common challenges. 

"The reality is every business is a 'service business' today and it's time that B2B organizations' strategies reflect that," said chief executive officer Greg Rich. "Even traditional companies in industries like healthcare and energy/utilities are rapidly acknowledging their roles in 'co-creating value' with their customers. Business leaders seeking a competitive advantage will need to align their organizations so that customer service plays a central role in all their business activities. This report details how they can go about it effectively and efficiently."

Businesses in today's remote world need to meet the needs of their customers' elevated expectations. This is especially true for B2B companies that maintain a complex web of interwoven, dynamic and long-term relationships between suppliers, vendors, contractors, internal teams and their customers - and often their customers' customers.

Service optimization is the key to achieving business success for B2B organizations.

For any B2B business, service optimization is the key to achieving business success. Service optimization is the ability to glean coherent insight and achieve the most efficient use of processes and information - across all disciplines and teams - to provide real business efficiency and optimal service delivery. For nearly 20 years, Vivantio has been pioneering service optimization and this comprehensive guide showcases how to apply it to the latest evolution of business service.

To learn more or to download your copy of "Leveraging Breakthrough Service to Transform Your B2B Enterprise," click here.

Topics: Service Management News & Awards Vivantio Customer Service Service Strategy service optimization
9 min read

How to Integrate Vivantio with Microsoft Teams

By Staff Writer on 2/9/21 9:00 AM

INTRODUCTION

In every company, it is crucial to have effective, efficient communication, such as the ability to alert your team about new urgent issues, or let a customer know you’ve responded. Thanks to API integration and webhooks, Vivantio makes sending messages to applications such as Microsoft Teams from your department easy. If your organisation uses Slack instead, you can find a tutorial on sending out communication from Slack here.

This tutorial will show you how to configure this in Microsoft Teams and provides two examples of using notifications in the Vivantio platform. Please note that Microsoft Teams transitioned to a new webhook URL format to enhance security on January 11, 2021. If you've configured this integration prior to that date, there are new set-up instructions included at the end of this blog for Step 7.  

To connect Vivantio to Microsoft Teams, you’ll need:

  1. Vivantio ITSM
  2. Admin access to your Vivantio Instance
  3. Permissions in MS Teams to create, update and remove connectors for the Team you wish to post to

 

CONFIGURATION IN MS TEAMS

Step 1:

Begin by logging into Microsoft Teams (MS Teams). You will then go to:

Your teams » Click on the channel within MS Teams you want to send notifications to » More options » Connectors

MS Teams Vivantio connectors detail

Step 2:

If it’s not already installed for the selected MS Teams group, add and install Incoming Webhook. Otherwise, configure Incoming Webhook.

configure webhook 1 detail

Step 3:

Enter a name for your webhook (this will be the username associated with messages sent into MS Teams), upload a custom image if desired, and select Create.

Connectors 1 detail

Step 4:

Next, copy the URL that is created, circled in red below. This will later be used to set up the webhook in Vivantio.

Copy URL 1 detail

 

CONFIGURATION IN VIVANTIO

Step 5:

Log into Vivantio, open the Admin Area. Navigate to:

Integration & API » Webhooks » Add Webhooks

Then select the ticket type you want the webhook to be available for.

add webhook 2 detail

Step 6:

Enter a name for your webhook.

Step 7:

Next, navigate to the Basic Details tab and enter the following information (please refer to the Update at the end of this blog if you configured this integration prior to January 11, 2021):

  • Request URL: Paste here the URL produced when you configured the incoming webhook in MS Teams.
  • HTTP Method: POST
  • Response Content Type: text/html

Step 8:

This next step, filling out the parameters tab, is optional. Set up parameters for the webhook by selecting Add. These are either values the technician will be prompted to complete, or populated automatically from the ticket. In this example, we have created a multi-line text field for a technician to enter the message that they wish to send into MS Teams.

Parameters tab

Step 9:

Now, fill out the Request Body tab.

For the Request Content Type field, select application/json. The Body Template will contain the information you wish to send in MS Teams notification, such as specific text, details from the ticket or a webhook parameter. Screenshots from the Request Body of two example webhooks are given below.

Example 1:

A notification message sent into Teams that utilizes the webhook Parameter we created in the previous step.

request body detail

{"text": ""}

Example 2:

A notification sent into Teams that includes details from the ticket. In this case, we use fields from the ticket. The “\n\n” signifies a line break. Note that Steps 1 through 8 were followed to create another webhook “Teams – High Priority Ticket.” Once the Request Body is filled in, click save.

Microsoft Teams request body high Priority

{"Title": "High Priority Ticket Logged",
"text": "Ticket Details: \n\n ID: {{ticket.displayid}} \n\n Subject: {{ticket.title}}
\n\n Caller Name: {{ticket.callername}}"}

Step 10:

The last step before we can use our new webhook is to configure its roles. By default, there will be no roles assigned to the webhook. To update the roles, select the webhook and click Roles. Drag the roles you want the webhook available for into Current Roles.

roles 1 details

Now let’s put the webhooks we set up into action!

You can use your webhook to send ad hoc notifications into MS Teams directly from a ticket window or you can execute your webhook through Trigger Rules. Two examples are given below:

Example 3:

An ad hoc message sent into MS Teams from a Vivantio ticket window

Actions » MS Teams Notification

notification from ticket window

The technician is prompted to fill in the “Notification to Teams” parameter we set up in the webhook. Recall that this webhook was configured so that the text entered here will be sent into MS Teams.

screenshot of notification message

Press OK and voila! This message is sent into MS Teams.

screenshot of notification message from vivantio 2

Example 4:

Sending a notification to an IT team’s channel in MS Teams any time a high priority ticket is logged.

In this case, you can set up a trigger rule to automatically execute the webhook when a high priority ticket is logged. Go to:

Admin area » System Areas » Select the ticket type you created the Webhook for
» Business Rules » Trigger Rules

To add a trigger rule, click Add, then:

• Enter a Rule Name and select when the condition is to be executed, either when the ticket first meets the condition (for example, if you just want people to know the ticket was created) or when the matching ticket is updated (if you want everyone to see all updates to the ticket).

• Enter the condition(s) for the trigger. In this example, the trigger rule condition is for tickets with the priority name equal to “high.”

screenshot of trigger rule set up

For the trigger rule “Actions” select

Webhooks » Webhook you want to fire; in this case, we chose

Teams – High Priority Ticket » Save

screenshot of trigger rule action

Once the trigger rule is set up, the “Teams – High Priority Ticket Webhook” will automatically send a notification with ticket details into MS Teams any time a “High Priority” ticket is logged.

screenshot of high priority notification in MS teams

CONCLUSION

There you have it! Now you can easily communicate to any team in MS Teams directly from Vivantio.

Update (as of January 11, 2021):

This step is for anyone who configured this integration prior to January 11, 2021. On this date, Microsoft Teams transitioned to a new webhook URL format to enhance security. You will need to update your webhook URL from within Microsoft Teams and copy the new URL into the webhook within Vivantio (Step 7).

To update your webhook URL within Teams, navigate to your webhook:

Your Teams >> Click on the channel your webhook is configured on >> More options >> Connectors

teams-connectors

Select Configured. Find your webhook and select Manage.

configure-webhook

If your webhook URL needs to be updated, an "Update URL" button will appear to the right of the URL. Select Update URL.

incoming-webhook-notification

Once your URL is updated, it will say "URL is up-to-date" below the URL. Copy the new URL into your webhook within Vivantio (Step 7).

Topics: Vivantio Customer Center Types of Service Integrations API Integration Tools WebMethods Microsoft Teams Integration
7 min read

How to integrate Vivantio with Azure DevOps

By Melissa Faletra on 7/13/20 2:33 PM

Azure DevOps–formerly named Visual Studio Team Foundation Server (TFS)–is a Microsoft product that allows developers to plan work, collaborate on code development and build and deploy applications. If your development teams are using Azure DevOps, integrating it with your service desk software can provide the following benefits:

  • Create bugs directly from Incidents or Tickets
  • Create Product Backlog Items from Service Requests or Change Requests

Vivantio includes an out-of-the-box, two-way integration with Azure DevOps, making it simple to have open communication and visibility between your support and development teams.

Our Azure DevOps integration helps you streamline your processes and keep everyone informed of what is going on, regardless of which tool they work in day-to-day, so there's no need for your developers to log into Vivantio, and no more phone calls to the development team to check on the status of bugs!

This tutorial will show you how to configure the integration and provides an example of creating a Work Item in Azure DevOps directly from Vivantio.

To connect Vivantio to Azure DevOps, you’ll need:

  1. Vivantio ITSM
  2. Admin access to your Vivantio Instance
  3. Credentials to a user account for Vivantio in Azure DevOps

 

CONFIGURATION IN VIVANTIO

Step 1:

Log into Vivantio, open the Admin Area. Navigate to:

Integration & API >> TFS

Fill in your Azure DevOps login credentials:

  • Version: Azure DevOps
  • Organization Name: Enter your organization name. This will be used in your API URL, for example: https://dev.azure.com/OrganizationName/
  • Username: The username for the Vivantio user account in Azure DevOps
  • Password: The Personal Access Token for the Vivantio user account in Azure DevOps. For details on creating a Personal Access Token, see the Microsoft Documentation here.

DevOps CredentialsThe bottom of the screen will update to show a couple of different URLs: the Work Item Alert URL and the Service Hook URL. You will use the Service Hook URL to set up Azure DevOps to send information back into Vivantio.

work item alerts

Step 2:

Select IP Range in the top left corner of the screen and configure the IP Range for Vivantio to accept requests from.

Azure DevOps Credentials

Step 3:

Configure your ticket to Work Item Mapping settings. This allows you to control which types of Vivantio Tickets can be mapped to which types of Azure DevOps Work Items so that the correct type of information can be transferred to the correct type of records. Any number of necessary ticket-to-work item mappings can be configured.

Navigate to the Ticket to Work Item Mapping tab and select Add.

On the Basic Details tab, give the mapping a name and fill in the following information:

  • Project Collection: The Project in Azure DevOps (If you’re using the hosted version of Azure DevOps, there will normally only be one option available here)
  • Project: The Project in Azure DevOps
  • Work Item Type: The Work Item Type in Azure DevOps
  • Ticket Type: The type of ticket within Vivantio that you want to create the Work Item from

basic details tab

Step 4:

Navigate to the Sync Options tab. Here you can configure the settings relating to the sync of data from Vivantio to Azure DevOps. (Note that this option does not force Azure DevOps to update Vivantio–that is configured within Azure DevOps itself). You have the option to fill in the following fields:

  • Link Work Item to Ticket: Checking this box will create a link to the Vivantio ticket from within the Azure DevOps ticket
  • Action Sync: Selecting “All” or “Non Private” will automatically sync all (or only non-private) actions made in Vivantio to the “Discussion” section within the Work Item in Azure DevOps
  • Attachment Sync: Selecting “All” or “Non Private” will automatically sync all (or only non-private) attachments added in the Vivantio ticket to the “Attachments” section within the Work Item in Azure DevOps

sync options

Step 5:

Select the Field Mappings tab and configure any additional field mappings. As standard, Vivantio will populate the Work Item Title and Description. If you want to add additional mappings, e.g., for custom fields, you can do so here. You can also choose to override the default mappings for Title and Description.

In the example below, we chose to map several custom fields from Vivantio to Azure DevOps.

field mappings

After choosing the appropriate options, hit Save, and you’re ready to start creating Azure DevOps Work Items directly from Vivantio.

 

CREATING A NEW WORK ITEM FROM VIVANTIO

When viewing a Ticket in Vivantio, under the Actions menu item, you’ll see the option to “Create New TSF Work Item.”

 

create work item

Selecting Create New TFS Work Item will open a pop-up window where you can select the Work Item Type. Any mappings created for the ticket type, using steps 3 through 5, will appear as options.create work item pop upSelecting OK will cause a TFSForm to appear in the Vivantio Ticket Window and a Work Item to be created in Azure DevOps.

DevOps form in ticket windowThe TFS form provides a direct link to the Work Item in Azure DevOps and provides the technician with the options to unlink the Vivantio ticket from the DevOps Work Item and to send ad-hoc comments and attachments to DevOps, which can be useful if you didn’t choose to automatically sync actions.

Clicking on the link to the Work Item in DevOps, we can see that the Work Item was created and the mapped fields were passed from the Vivantio Ticket to the Work Item.

DevOps ticket example

 

CONFIGURATION IN AZURE DEVOPS

Getting Information Back From Azure DevOps

Configurations can be made in Azure DevOps to automatically send information from DevOps into Vivantio. This is done using the Service Hook that was create in Step 1.

Step 6:

To configure the Service Hook in Azure DevOps, navigate to Service Hooks within Project Settings in Azure DevOps (Microsoft’s documentation on Service Hooks can be found here). On the first page of the Create Service Hook wizard, you’ll choose the Webhooks option and select Next:

new service hooks subscription

On the next page of the wizard, you’ll choose the type of event the Service Hook triggers on. Vivantio currently supports “Work Item Commented On” and “Work Item Updated.” Enter any filters you want for the area or work item type.

new service hooks triggerSelect and configure the action to perform with the service hook. Under URL,” paste your service hook from Step 1. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select [Latest]for Resource Version.

service hook subscription actionNow when we comment on Work Items in Azure DevOps...

comment in devops

...the comment is automatically added to the linked Ticket’s history in Vivantio:

comment in vivantio from devopsAdditional configurations can be made in Azure DevOps using Webhooks to automatically update fields in Vivantio based on updates in Azure DevOps.

If you’re using Vivantio and Azure DevOps and you don’t have them integrated yet, give it a try and see how it helps improve communications between your service desk and your development team.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Center System Integration Methods Types of Service Integrations API Integration Tools
2 min read

Vivantio Named High Performer in G2 Winter 2020 Report

By Staff Writer on 3/17/20 9:00 AM

G2 CROWD RECOGNIZES VIVANTIO AS HIGH PERFORMER

Vivantio, an industry-leading IT service management software solution that empowers companies to achieve unparalleled service excellence, was recognized as a Higher Performer in G2 Crowd’s 2020 Winter Report. G2 Crowd is a product review platform where verified users review, rank and share experiences and feedback on various services and software products.

As a top performer on G2 Crowd, Vivantio ranks highly in customer satisfaction and averages 4.1 out of 5 stars, with customers rating Vivantio most highly for ease-of-use, quality of support and ease of set-up. Vivantio centralizes service management operations within companies and enables users to reduce operational costs, improve response times, meet performance objectives and maintain customer service excellence.


"The application is logical and efficient, promoting effective use. We are often surprised by additional features that provide well though-out functionality. The workflow functionality was significantly better than we expected. It adds a lot of value!”

– G2 Crowd Reviewer, Executive Sponsor in Cosmetics; A Mid-Market Company


Vivantio’s success over the past 17 years is due to its focus on creating a platform that consistently provides best value with flexible licensing, prioritizes customer satisfaction and support, and is a feature-rich, configurable platform that can be customized to business needs.

To see how Vivantio can help your company achieve service excellence, book a demo today.

Abi is giving a demonstration on the features of Vivantio

About Vivantio

In 2003, inspired by the desire to empower customers to solve complex problems with simple solutions, we created and deployed the world’s very first SaaS service management platform. Today, Vivantio’s multi-tenant platform is reliable, customizable, secure and trusted by leading service teams across the globe.

About G2 Crowd

G2 is the world’s largest tech marketplace where businesses can discover, review and manage the technology they need to reach their potential. Rankings are based on how likely users are to recommend the product to others, how satisfied they are and the popularity of the platform.

Topics: Service Desk Software News & Awards ITSM Vivantio Customer Service ITSM Solution ITSM Tools
4 min read

One IT Service Management Software Tool for Multiple Departments

By Staff Writer on 1/16/20 9:00 AM

One ITSM Software Tool, Many Departments

During conversations with our customers, we discovered that various service teams outside of the IT department are using our ITSM software, thanks to its scalability and flexibility. Why? Because they are focused on a common goal: using one tool to streamline their business processes. After all, using one IT service management tool can reduce operational costs, help you meet performance goals and maintain customer service excellence.

a-centralized-hub-hero-image-5-1200x300

Flexible. Scalable.

Sharing one software tool across different service teams for business processes that require action from multiple departments allows everyone to work toward a common goal while keeping sensitive information secure.

Consider the process of onboarding a new employee.

Between submitting the job requisition form and preparing the new hire’s work environment, at least three different departments are accountable for moving this process forward successfully: Human Resources, Facilities and IT.

If you’ve been on the side of hiring before, you probably know how much time and how many resources it takes to not only find the right person for the job, but to also prepare them for the first day on-the-job training.

Here’s the good news: using ITSM software, such as Vivantio, that new hire checklist can be streamlined and automated, and, as a result, your new employee (i.e., your internal customer) will be happy from day one.

Screenshot of workflow sample


  • Bring All Your Service Operations Under One Roof
  • Streamline Interdepartmental Workflow and Communication
  • Meet the Unique Demands of All Your Service Teams

Using employee onboarding as the example, let’s take a closer look at the steps each department can tackle using one ITSM software tool while keeping each department’s data secure.

Human Resources

  • Streamline the onboarding process by reducing paperwork, receiving status alerts on important contract updates and monitoring the overall progress of onboarding
  • Eliminate redundant data such as salary, contact, and personal information by integrating your ITSM platform with your current data tools and by using dashboards and reports accessible among your HR team
  • Use self-service portals to automate e-signing new hire documents and eliminate back-and-forth requests between the department and new hire
  • Improve interdepartmental communication and coordinate timelines via trigger rules and workflows for new hire training

office-settingwith a diverse group of coworkers collaborating


Facilities

  • Send notifications alerting IT support staff to configure a new hire’s laptop
  • With automation, reduce the amount of time it takes to get approvals so the new hire can get up and running faster
  • Trigger multi-departmental events like setting up access to important business tools and company intranet for the new hire
  • Track and manage the process of setting up the new hire’s workspace, ranging from hardware installation to moving desk furniture

two laptops and coworkers reviewing documents


Technical Support

  • Asset management helps teams manage the new hire’s assets like computers and software with efficiency and accuracy
  • With integration capabilities, IT can seamlessly integrate a new employee’s technology into the company’s network
  • Manage and track the status of employee’s email account creation and necessary software installations
  • Enable new employees to find the IT information they need in a searchable online knowledge base

two male coworkers discussing technology support options over their laptops


Conclusion

These examples from our customers aren’t the only way you can maximize the use of ITSM platforms. Overall, service management software can reduce operational costs, streamline processes and allows you to maintain customer service excellence across the entire organization. When you’re ready to jump on the ITSM platform bandwagon, make sure you consider the type of service desk you plan to operate and take a holistic approach to serving the needs of multiple departments, ensuring your business is running as efficiently as possible. Your customers will thank you for it.

Topics: Service Management ITIL ITSM Reporting ITSM Vivantio
3 min read

The Differences Between Help Desk and Service Desk and Why it Matters

By Staff Writer on 10/30/19 9:00 AM

HELP DESK VS. SERVICE DESK

The debate on the definition of a service desk versus a help desk has been ongoing, and companies find themselves asking questions around IT desk nomenclature, strategies and scalability. Although determining the difference between terms “help desk” and “service desk” seems like a crucial first step, what might be even more important is considering the type of service desk you want to be.

graphic with itsm at top service desk in the middle and help desk at the bottom

Before we explain why this is important, let’s clear up some of the confusion surrounding the terms “help desk” and “service desk.” In short, think of the service desk as an ecosystem and the help desk as a piece of that ecosystem (a square is a rhombus, right?). A help desk may consist of a smaller team with a primary objective to resolve specific incidents (a broken printer, for example), software and hardware glitches, and ticket management–all of which service desks do, too. Help desks are point solutions and typically reactive.

A service desk, however, is more business-centric and built on core ITIL principles and the five stages of the service lifecycle, which are:

  1. Service Strategy: design, develop, and implement strategy and business goals of ITSM
  2. Service Design: create design and develop processes that support service strategies
  3. Service Transition: transition services from development to operation
  4. Service Operation: review and deliver services
  5. Continual Service Improvement: review, assess and improve strategies to provide better service

This means service desks often tackle strategic business needs, provide service request solutions and a knowledge base to end users, and oversee incident and change management and IT processes and functions.

Some features commonly found within a Help Desk software typically include:

  • Ticket Routing and Management
  • Limited Automation
  • Asset Management

Some features commonly found within a Service Desk software typically include:

  • Change and Release Management
  • Self-Service Portals
  • Knowledge Base


WHY IT MATTERS

The reason it’s important to determine the kind of service desk you want to be is because you should invest in a system you can grow into, not out of.

Some smaller companies implement a help desk SaaS solution that focuses only on being IT-centric instead of IT service-centric, which may be all they need.

But other companies often outgrow the platform’s limitations and soon after look to upgrade, which can be time-consuming, expensive and require additional resources and training than originally planned for. And, given that service management solutions aren’t just for IT departments anymore, the need to expand your ITSM solution is common.


THE (IT) SOLUTION

To avoid outgrowing your software solution, consider the capabilities of the platform from the start. Does it offer typical help desk features as well as service desk management, such as a self-service portal, a knowledge base and automation? Does it follow ITIL processes? Be diligent in your research of your future service platform to ensure it–and your business–can succeed.

Topics: Service Desk Software Service Management ITIL ITSM Vivantio ITSM Solution ITSM Tools
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