IT Service Management
Houlder Limited Showcases the Value of IT Through Samanage
With over 200 employees throughout six locations in the United Kingdom and United States, Houlder Limited is an independent provider of design, engineering and equipment. Operating for over 25 years as an independent service provider, Houlder has grown with a focus on renewables, oil and gas, marine, and LNG distribution.
Samanage assists from a management perspective in demonstrating the value of the IT organization. When I’m making a business case, I can now show our workload and the types of requests coming in. It’s much easier to show the changes our user base needs.- Andy Matthews, IT Manager
The IT team at Houlder was using a combination of methods to manage their assets and incidents reported. With a homegrown asset management system in place and Zendesk running point on incident management, Houlder found that these two solutions were not compatible with each other or the organization as a whole. Asset management had become a day-to-day hassle for the IT team due to the use of on-premise software, which required heavy manual data pulls and did not provide the team visibility into their assets across the company. And, although Zendesk fit the needs of their external customer service processes, it could not provide the IT service management functionality required by their agile IT team.
“There was no central way to track issues. As the company grew, it was becoming increasingly difficult to keep Excel spreadsheets up to date as employees passed equipment around,” said Andy Matthews, IT Manager at Houlder. “More and more often equipment was at risk of being lost or broken.”
With an upcoming expansion into Asia and the Middle East, Houlder needed a solution that would help them strategize, research and manage new IT initiatives while focusing on cost-efficiency and continual improvement of their business.
With these large initiatives in mind, Matthews and his team sought an integrated service desk and asset management platform that was cloud-based and affordable with an ease of use that they had yet to find in another software or a homegrown solution.
“Right away I was impressed with Samanage and it’s simplicity,” said Matthews. “Samanage is tailored to scale and meet the needs of growing organizations. We were able to get up and running in half an hour with an integrated solution. That’s typically unheard of in service management.”
One of the greatest benefits Houlder’s IT team found in Samanage was an improved asset management processes.
“Implementation with Samanage was quick and easy,” said Matthews. “We were able to tag all of our assets globally with the agent and prepare for the growth to come without worrying about the status of older technology. With Samanage, it’s all in one place where we can easily see and track each device. Now, we get a real picture of our hardware, who’s using what, and where it is in the world.”
Robust incident management, in addition to asset management, led to even more benefits for Houlder. “We’re really starting to see incident management take off now throughout the company,” said Matthews. “We’re creating a knowledge base for our team by consistently moving documentation into Samanage. End user adoption continues to grow and users now know where they can find the basics, saving us and them time.”
The team is now able to measure a true decrease in ticket response time and time spent managing hardware. “We didn’t really have metrics before. Now that we do, we are starting to see improvements across the board,” said Matthews.
“Samanage also assists from a management perspective in demonstrating the value of the IT organization,” said Matthews. “When I’m making a business case, I can now show our workload and the types of requests coming in. It’s much easier to show the changes our user base needs.”
As well as their original needs being met, Samanage is co-captain in helping the Houlder IT team lead process changes in other departments in the organization. “We started using both service catalog and change management, and they’re really powerful,” said Matthews. “We didn’t originally buy Samanage for those functions, but tracking requests through email is unfit for a growing organization. There are new starters and software request workflows in the service catalog for IT, which helps us capture the right data upfront.”
Samanage captures the right data earlier in the process and, from an audit standpoint, this allows the Houlder IT team to ensure that all actions are authorized. With the ability to trace multiple levels of approvals, Houlder is seeing timely processes become more streamlined and efficient.