CA Service Desk Manager Review

Advanced Availability architecture is the key feature.


What is most valuable?

Advanced Availability architecture is hands down the key feature. We can make sweeping changes, to the application or database, with a minimal impact on our user base. Most of the time, the users see no downtime at all.

How has it helped my organization?

CA SDM has organized the work for our internal groups to run the IT infrastructure in our company. When you add the workflow engine to the mix, the productivity and process adherence both get greatly enhanced.

What needs improvement?

There are some functions I have seen from its competitors that I would want CA SDM to have. I also find some of the items to be tedious from an admin point of view.

The pdm_publish process, that adds tables and columns to the database, is an unforgiving key stroke of errors.

A “publish” can run to completion, but if a mistake was made, then the system will stay down, until you figure out what mistake was made and correct it.

I would like to see the process just throw away the mistake and continue cleanly. After which time, it could post a report upon completion that you have to redo the offensive work.

For how long have I used the solution?

Personally, I have been using this product for eight years. However, the company has been using it for about 12 years. We started out with version 11.2.

Currently, we are using version 12.9 and we will be moving to version 14.1, very shortly.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The system is very stable, but there are some instances where instability has been seen. It typically comes from the external influences or from one, turn-off network interruption, causing us to re-establish a database connection.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There were no scalability issues, thus far. We have 28,000 users in the user database within the system, and it seems to chug along fine.

How are customer service and technical support?

The initial support was wonderful. Over the past three years, I have seen some degradation in the support, both in terms of the response time as well as the resolution time.

CA has been advised of this issue and they have met with us on this subject. So, they have acknowledged the problem and are trying to make adjustments in order to accommodate it.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

This is the first tool of its type that is being used in the way that we are using it.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward, but there are many steps involved. I don’t fault the vendor for this. There are many aspects that require attention as the system is very customizable.

What other advice do I have?

Take the implementation class that CA offers. It is key to have certain aspects figured out ahead of time, as they will impact the system heavily, as time goes on.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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