CA Service Desk Manager Review

The connections between incidents, changes, and problems give us visibility and control


What is our primary use case?

We use the tool for many processes. Incident problem, change, config, and knowledge. So it's very important for us, and it's used very much and it will increase in importance for us. There are 47,000 employees at Sandvik who do need these systems for IT processes.

It's operated in one company, a supporting IT company. It's in one place and the whole global organization at Sandvik is using this for IT incident problems. It's a central solution for Sandvik.

What is most valuable?

Right now, we are starting to be dependent on the CMDB a lot. It's increasingly important but, of course, as with many other customers, it's the ticket system that actually helps us a lot. For incidents, of course, that's the biggest use right now.

How has it helped my organization?

We get control, and the incidents are actually connected to changes and problems. So we do have a good picture and control.

What needs improvement?

We talk a lot about the idea that Service Desk Manager should be more "service" oriented, not just ticket oriented. Right now, it's just tickets, tickets, tickets. It could be related to a CMDB topic, but it's the service perspective. We talk a lot about that with CA. That's the main improvement that we need to have in place. There are improvements ongoing in that direction, I should say.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is very good right now. We had some problems, issues, absolutely. The issues were regarding the application that is connected with the servers. It's a lot of configuration, there are a lot of challenges in that. We have virtual servers over there and we have the application on them, so it's been challenging. But right now we have succeeded.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is quite good I think. Right now we are quite satisfied with the solution.

How is customer service and technical support?

We are using CA AMS in Prague, they help us with the operational side. They let us focus on the improvements, the future. We can actually relax, we don't need to take care of all the incidents regarding the tools. So we are relieved a bit regarding the operational side.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We had our homegrown solution in Lotus Notes, but we knew that we should grow a lot, be more of a global IT. So we needed one central system that was more generic. What we used before was just a database, very, very simple.

We also picked Service Desk Manager because we saw there could be possibilities to add other products once again.

How was the initial setup?

We installed it in 2001. I was a bit to the side, but yes, I was a bit involved. And we implemented it, perhaps, not in an optimal way. We tried to change it so it suited us. That was, perhaps, a mistake. But we have changed it continuously as well.

What other advice do I have?

In terms of the important criteria when researching products and vendors, I don't know really, because I haven't been involved with that many new products. 

We know that if we want to have another system, it's an advantage to have another module from CA, so that we are increasing the product family from CA. Perhaps this has been an approach. It costs too much if we try to connect to others. But I haven't involved in the other investments in the system, actually.

I give it a six out of 10, but that depends; it is our fault because we are, perhaps, not using the tool as we should. It's not just CA's fault. But it's a six.

As we have other solutions from CA, I would recommend this for others, absolutely, because if you are using this in the right way you have big possibilities.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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