MOM's not the word, say customers
Microsoft has admitted that few customers have invested in its Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) systems management tool since it was launched a year ago and, of those who have, many have failed to achieve benefits.
Despite extremely disappointing sales, the software giant remains bullish that the market is poised for growth as companies look towards systems management tools to control costs, achieve service level agreements and better control IT infrastructures.
But Microsoft has said that investments will only pay off if they are supported by changes to business processes.
According to analyst Gartner, 70 per cent of systems management projects fail because companies do not take these factors into consideration.
Microsoft marketing manager Paul Randle blamed a long sales cycle for the disappointing take-up of MOM, which is designed to manage the Windows environment.
The company has since launched MOM Express, a scaled down, fixed price version of the tool, which it says makes it easier for customers to express return on investment.
"Our research indicates that 72 per cent of Windows environments don't have any sort of management tools. They have been a bit of a 'nice-to-have' for medium sized organizations," said Randle.
He added that ecommerce would be a big driver for selling service management to the board, as companies recognized how availability of service had a direct impact on customer satisfaction and revenues.
Andrew Platt, principal consultant at Fujitsu Services, one of Microsoft's MOM partners, warned that a certain amount of overselling had damaged the systems management market.
"What often happens is that companies have the infrastructure in place and the systems management tools, but no one asks whether they are using them to get the business benefits they want," he said.
"You have to invest in keeping it maintained and building knowledge back into the system. This is a quality of service and cost of service sell. We're not about implementing a technology."
A new version of Microsoft Systems Management Server, codenamed Topaz, is due out in January and will allow the distribution of software based on job roles.
Meanwhile, a survey conducted by help desk and IT service management software specialist Axios Systems found that training in service management concepts continues to be a low priority.
Three-quarters of computing support professionals have received no training on the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL®), a series of books which outline a process-based set of best practices for IT service management.
More than two-thirds of respondents claimed to be aware of ITIL® but only just over half felt that their organization knew about it. Just 42 per cent believed that their organization had made an attempt to put ITIL® principles into practice.
Axios Systems is a leading provider of Best Practice-based IT Service Management (ITSM) solutions. Our customer-centric approach combined with our award-winning solutions, ensure customers worldwide can align their Service and Support organizations with the overall business goals. Our core solution, assyst, intuitively steers users through the ITIL® processes. Axios Global Services provides a range of consulting, project management and training services. Our commitment to Best Practice is demonstrated through being the first to achieve BS 15000 certification which has now become, ISO/IEC 20000, the International standard for ITSM. Axios is headquartered in the UK, with offices across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific.