Micro Focus Service Anywhere [EOL] Review

The self-service portal and dashboards are good. Reporting is a challenge.

Valuable Features

The self-service portal is good. The dashboards are good. It's an improvement over what we had before. We just rolled it out, so we haven't been able to leverage all of the advantages. It's a little early to tell any more than that.

Improvements to My Organization

We're just barely getting any reports out of it. We hope to be able to roll self-service out to the rest of our company, and reduce the time for our tier one support team to resolve issues. Hopefully we'll get better reporting, improved reporting out of it so we'd be able to manage work a little bit closer.

Room for Improvement

Reporting is a challenge. We're working out how we can effectively report on what's going on. The other thing is that Service Anywhere seemed to have, or HP when they designed this, seemed to come up with this idea and they deviated a little from standard service management terminology and practice. They have a thing called a "support request," which is almost like a mini incident. It's not really a true incident. So my team is kind of struggling to understand what that's all about. It seems to be baked into the tool. It's just how the designers designed it. So that's been a bit of a challenge, dealing with support requests.

Use of Solution

We've been using it for a few months.

Stability Issues

There's been a couple things. One is around changes to the system. We're not always necessarily in the loop on that, and the other is just performance issues. We've had a few days, a couple days go by with quite a bit of lag in performance.

We've had good performance. We notice the difference as all of a sudden, something's going on and we're working through those. I don't exactly know what the root cause has been.

Scalability Issues

We're not that big. If we go to full self-service, we only have 550 employees. Right now, we've probably got about less than a hundred on it. Scalability, I guess, will need to be there, but I don't think it's a big concern. It's not like we're going to have thousands or tens of thousands of people using it.

Customer Service and Technical Support

We contact tech support, but it wasn't me directly involved in that because I've got a bit of a project team that's still handling that, so I can't say.

Previous Solutions

We previously used LANDesk. We already had a relationship with HP for our data center, so it was an obvious potential choice. The other thing was, as we looked at some other products, it appeared to be, and still proves to be, more of a future-thinking application, where it's supposed to have some good analytics and almost heuristic-based type analytics. With all the different modules, powerful search, and a powerful knowledge base, it provides tools to allow users to resolve issues themselves if there are articles and things like that. So that's the future. We're not there yet. But if that comes to fruition, we'll be real happy.

Initial Setup

Initial setup was pretty quick, so they did it fairly quickly. Whether it was complex or not, I don't know. The team seemed to be able to pull it together. We tried to simplify it the best we could. We didn't customize it in any way. However the tool is meant to be used, let's try it and minimize our configuration. The approach we took meant we could do a rapid deployment, and we did it fairly quickly, so it worked OK. It just involves a project of managing expectations with the users.

Other Advice

Even if you're going to do a quick implementation like we did, make sure you have a good amount of time with the users and make sure they understand the expectations, how it's going to impact them. Minimize customizations and configuration. Go with whatever the vanilla product delivers and see if you can make it work. Make sure you've defined upfront some consistencies and standards because if you don't, within the first couple months, people will be using the tool differently and then the reporting that you were hoping to get out of it is going to be meaningless.

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