Warrington, United Kingdom
Automations, Service Catalog
Workflows and ITIL Processes Drive Continuous Service Improvement
Betfred is a bookmaker in the United Kingdom, founded by Fred and Peter Done. It was first established as a single shop in Ordsall, Salford, in 1967, and has grown into one of the largest bookmakers in the world, with shops throughout the U.K. and a significant online community.
Samanage is our asset management center, and it’s used by our data center manager, change manager, and problem manager. The fact that we can all work within the same system is a huge benefit.- Andrew Eardley-Day, ITSM Systems Administrator
Connecting ITIL Processes
The IT department at Betfred supports a large operation — more than 1,200 employees split across locations in Wigan, Warrington, and Gibraltar. Up until 2016, they used a SharePoint based system for IT support, but as they grew, they recognized the need to move toward an ITIL framework to create the most efficient service experience.
Andrew Eardley-Day is the ITSM Systems Administrator for Betfred, and he explained that they simply needed a tool with more capability.
“Our old system could only log the calls for the service desk,” said Eardley-Day. “We needed more than that. We needed a full ITSM system for asset management, change management, and problem management, in addition to the straightforward support tickets.”
Those needs led them to Samanage, which has allowed them to streamline ITIL processes.
“Samanage is our asset management center, and it’s used by our data center manager, change manager, and problem manager.” explained Eardley-Day. “The fact that we can all work within the same system is a huge benefit. Our team uses it to triage all calls into the service desk and send it off to wherever it needs to go to. The desktop support is in Warrington and Gibraltar. They all do a more face-to-face fix for whatever the issue is.”
Improving the Employee Experience Through the Service Portal
One area that’s making an impact for Betfred is the employee visibility in the service portal. Eardley-Day said his team is somewhat flexible in how they receive requests, but they’ve made an effort to drive service through the portal to improve the experience.
“I would say probably the majority of our requests now come through the portal as opposed to phone call or email,” said Eardley-Day. “If somebody emails in, we will fire it straight back asking them to submit it through the portal. Sometimes we’ll log a phone call ourselves if we feel it’s the fastest way, but in general, we encourage them to use the portal for their own benefit.”
He warns, though, that service portal adoption doesn’t happen naturally. It takes some commitment to education and training to help the organization see the benefits.
“You need to take time with each individual department,” explained Earley-Day. “The main department leaders need to know how to use Samanage — that means understanding the portal and the service catalog, and how useful they are compared to what we’ve done in the past. You have to show them that they can see the ticket, they can communicate with us, they’ll get up-to-date information on the status.”
That visibility has been a major benefit to Betfred, and they’re hearing positive feedback from requesters.
“They love it because they have that interaction as opposed to emailing into the black hole,” said Eardley-Day. “They also like that we have a catalog of service requests, and when they give us the information, that’s all the information that we’ll need. We’re not going back and forth for information. Job done. Happy days.”
Continuous Improvement with Workflows and Automations
Eardley-Day feels strongly that the meticulous testing in the implementation phase set a strong foundation for success with Samanage. He said his team took time with every service catalog item to test the workflow, understand the system, and make any changes they needed.
That mentality has continued, especially as Samanage introduces new functionality.
“Samanage has grown in the year that we’ve had it,” explained Eardley-Day. “We’ve worked with the API to figure out how we can use it. We’ve added automations for keywords that fire tickets to the right teams. We take feedback from both our end users and the service desk personnel to figure out how we can introduce new ways to be more efficient.”
The ability to expand all of those service catalog workflows gives the team something they can always improve.
“We’ve got 54 different requests, all of which have a workflow sat behind them,” said Eardley-Day. “Some might have just one or two bullet points, but some are quite intricate with different conditions. We’re building new ones, probably two or three a month now based on different departments coming and requesting something that might be useful. It’s an ongoing process I don’t think will ever end because Samanage is always getting better.”