Wednesday, January 17, 2018

A New Name

4me logoITRP has changed its name to 4me. The evolution of the service management industry beyond IT was the prime driver behind this name change. More and more organizations now provide their employees with a single self-service portal that allows them to quickly get support from any department. The new name was chosen to emphasize the fact that this portal dynamically adjusts itself to provide each employee a personalized experience.

4me logoThe press release provides a little more background about why it was time to change the name.

This name change also affects this blog. It has been moved to That is where we will continue to share our progress with you.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Include a Video

ImageMany people have asked for the possibility to add a video to a knowledge article, a task template, or a request. A short video can be very helpful when providing instructions or showing the effects of a software bug.

That is why every field that allows you to add inline images, now allows you to also embed videos. These rich text fields offer a text formatting bar. Pressing the Image button in this bar now allows you to add an image or a video.

Image button of text formatting bar
You can upload a short video (up to 20MB) by dragging and dropping it onto the dialog. Or you can use the 'Insert from URL' option to enter the hyperlink of a longer video.

Add image or video dialog
The 'Insert from URL' option makes it easy to share videos that are hosted on video sharing sites like YouTube or Vimeo. And the 'Media Library' option can be used to select a short video file from the Media Library.

Video embedded in rich text field
Rather than using the Image button of the text formatting bar, you can also simply drag and drop a small video file in the text field to embed it.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Finding the Right Report

Pie chartSince the 'Reports' section was added to the Analytics console, the number of reports in this section has been growing steadily. Right now there are already 46 reports in this section and this number is only going to grow.

Because the list is already quite long, you may not instantly spot the report you are looking for. Fortunately, the recent usability enhancement of the Filter functionality is there to help you.

After you have accessed the 'Reports' section of the Analytics console, you can immediately start to enter some text in the Search box that is available above the list of reports. That limits the list to the reports that include your text in their title.

Filtered list of reports
Try filtering the list by entering 'problem', 'know' or 'sla' in Search box. That will demonstrate how useful filtering can be when you need to run a report.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Start Filtering Right Away

FilterThe view that opens on the left side of the screen when you access ITRP’s Inbox or Records console can now be filtered more quickly. That is because, by default, the cursor is already placed in the Search box as soon as the view has loaded.

Cursor in search box by default
The cursor is also placed in the Search box when you go to the Analytics console or the Settings console. In these consoles you can use the Search box to filter the sections that are presented on the left side of these consoles. Over time, more and more sections have become available, so being able to quickly filter these sections will help you find the section you are looking for more easily. After you have opened a section that contains a view, the Search box can be used to filter the list of items in the view.

Cursor in search box by default
Note that one exception has been made for the Service Desk console. There, the cursor is still placed in the User field by default to ensure that service desk analysts can look up a person immediately after they have opened the Service Desk console.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

SLA Response Target Reports

Pie chartAnother 3 reports have been added to the 'Reports' section of the Analytics console. The new reports are focused on SLA response targets.

The names of these 3 new reports are:
  • SLA Response Targets Met and Violated
  • SLA Response Targets Met by Impact
  • SLA Response Targets Violated by Impact

SLA Response Targets Violated by Impact

Monday, December 11, 2017

Introducing the Media Library

Media fileWhen you go to the Settings console, you will find a new section called ‘Media Library’. This is where specialists and administrators can upload files. By adding a file to the media library, it gets hosted on a web server that gives it a URL. This URL can then be used elsewhere in the ITRP service.

A media file can, for example, be created for a user manual so that its URL can be included in a knowledge article. Similarly, a background image or a logo can be uploaded as a media file so that its URL can be used in the Self Service design, email designs and PDF designs.

Media file with image preview
People who have the Specialist role can add a new media file to the media library of their support organization’s account. They can also update and delete media files, but only the ones they created. A person who has the Directory Administrator role or the Account Administrator role can maintain and delete all media files of their organization's ITRP account.

Important: People do not need to be logged into ITRP to access a file that has been uploaded into the media library. These files are public, so anyone who has the public link of a media file can access it.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Health Indicator for Configuration Items

Quick Range optionsConfiguration ItemA useful new feature has been added to the Service Hierarchy Browser (SHB) that is available to the right of each request. This vertical bar already provided a lot of useful real-time information related to the request that the specialist is working on, such as the health and open incidents for the request's service instance.

Now specialists will also see a health indicator for the CIs (configuration items or assets) of the service instance that are relevant for the request. This indicator shows the highest impact level of the open requests that the specialist has access to and that are linked to the CI.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

3 More Quick Ranges

CalendarWhen a custom date range can be set for a report, the quick ranges make this very easy. Users have indicated, however, that a few more quick ranges would be useful.

Quick Range optionsThat is why the following 3 options have been added:
  • Past Week
  • Past Month
  • Previous 3 months, plus month to date

Note that selecting the option 'Past Week' sets the date range from minus 6 days through today's date, while the 'Past Month' range is from minus 1 month through today's date.

The option 'Previous 3 months, plus month to date' goes back 3 months and starts the date range on the first day of that month through today's date.

After selecting a quick range, you can go back and to open the 'Custom Range' menu to see the exact start and end dates.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Invoices for Projects

InvoiceProject managers are now able to register invoices from suppliers. They can only add these invoices to projects that they are the manager of. This will help them keep track of the actual cost of purchases for their projects. To add an invoice to a project, the project’s manager can press the Add Invoice button that is available in the header of the new ‘Invoices’ section.

Invoices section of a project
The Invoice form that opens after clicking on the Add Invoice button should be reasonably self-explanatory for a project manager. The fields of the Invoice form are described in the online help, just in case.

Invoice for a project
The REST API is already available for invoices, and so is the Import API.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

More Problem Management Reports

Bar chart verticalThis weekend, 9 more reports were added to give support organizations more insight in the problems that affect, or affected, their services.

These problem reports already existed:
  • Active Problems by Service
  • Active Problems by Status
  • Solved Problems by Service

When you go to the 'Reports' section of the Analytics console, you will see that the following problem reports were added:
  • Active Problems Aging since Last Updated
  • Active Problems Aging since Registered
  • Active Problems by Impact
  • Active Problems by Target Indication
  • Halted Problems Aging since Last Updated
  • Halted Problems Aging since Registered
  • Halted Problems by Impact
  • Halted Problems by Service
  • Solved Problems by Impact

Problem managers and service owners can customize these reports by adding some filters or a date range. Once they have customized a report, they can click on the report's title to bookmark it. That makes it possible to reuse these customized reports each time the Problem Management workload needs to be reviewed.

Solved Problems by Service report

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Online Project Manager Training

TrainingThe Project Manager training module has been added to the online learning center. This training makes it possible for project managers to get comfortable with ITRP's Project Management functionality, without having to leave their desk.

Project Manager Training Exercise
Upon completion of the training, project managers are able to use ITRP to:
  • create and maintain project templates,
  • create new projects,
  • apply project templates,
  • set the risk, effort and value for projects,
  • prepare and modify project plans,
  • manage project resources,
  • analyze a project portfolio.

People who would like to go through the training by themselves can request an ITRP demo instance. A free demo instance provides a fully configured ITRP environment that is populated with all the data needed to complete the training exercises.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Introducing the Search API

SearchA new API has been added to the ITRP service. This new API makes it possible for the API's user to search through his/her most relevant ITRP records.

Specifically, the Search API can be used to find:

  • requests that were requested by or for the API user
  • change approval tasks assigned to the API user
  • project tasks assigned to the API user
  • services for which the API user is covered by an active SLA
  • request templates related to services for which the API user is covered by an active SLA
  • knowledge articles related to services for which the API user is covered by an active SLA

The primary goal of this API is to give AI chatbots the ability to retrieve information from ITRP that allows for a more intelligent conversation with the user. The AI can use the information from ITRP to obtain context for the chat session and to look up the knowledge article or request template that the user needs.

Detailed information about the Search API can be found in ITRP's online Developer Documentation.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Filter Reports by Team and Service Provider

FilterMore filters continue to be added to the reports. The latest are the ’Team’ filter for the request reports and the ’Support team’ filter for the configuration item reports.

Report filetered by team and service provider
The filter ’Service provider’ has also been added for the request reports. This filter looks at the service provider organization that is linked to the service of the service instance that is related to each request.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Planned Effort for Change Tasks

ClockThe Planned effort field, which was already available in project tasks, has now also become available for change tasks. The planned effort can be specified in task templates to ensure that change managers do not need to spend time filling out this extra field.

Planned effort field in a change task
The Planned effort field makes it possible to show the progress of open tasks in the Gantt charts. Note that when the Planned effort field is left empty, ITRP assumes for the open tasks that their planned effort is the same as the task's planned duration.

Progress of an open task in the Gantt chart
The Planned effort field makes it possible to calculate how much progress has already been made with the implementation. The new the Progress indicator, which you will find in the 'Time Entries' section header, provides a visual representation of this for changes as well as projects.

Time entries with links to tasks.png
When you open the 'Time Entries' section, you will notice one more enhancement. The task for which each time entry was added is now specified in this section.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Track Self Service Usage with Google Analytics

Google AnalyticsThe standard integration with Google Analytics is now available. This integration allows support organizations to track and report on their ITRP Self Service traffic using the advanced web analytics service offered by Google.

ITRP's standard Google Analytics integration
The administrator of the organization's ITRP account can activate this integration in the 'Apps' section of the Settings console. All that is needed is a Google Analytics tracking ID to ensure that this ID is embedded in all Self Service pages.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

10 More Reports

Bar chart horizontalNew reports continue to be added to the 'Reports' section of ITRP's Analytics console. This week, the following 10 reports have become available:

  • Open Requests by Service Instance
  • Completed Requests by Service
  • Completed Requests by Impact
  • Completed Requests by Organization
  • Completed Requests by Service Instance
  • Completed Requests by Site
  • Active Problems by Service
  • Solved Problems by Service
  • Open Changes by Service
  • Completed Changes by Service

Solved Problems by Service report
By default, the reports with completed requests, problems and changes include the records that were completed during the past 3 months. By clicking on this default date range it is possible to set a custom date range.

Copy Subject of Template to Requests

Request templateThe checkbox ‘Copy subject to requests’ has been added for request templates. By default this box is checked.

Copy subject to requests checkbox
As long as it is checked, the subject of the template gets filled out in the Subject field of a request when the template is applied and the Subject field was still empty. After a service desk manager has unchecked this box, however, the mandatory Subject field of the request will remain empty when the template is applied.

This can be useful, for example, when you want end users to enter a short description in the Subject field after they selected the request template in Self Service.

Monday, November 13, 2017

New Team Is Not Responsible

AlertLet's say that there is an issue with the production environment of the Sales Tracking application service. The specialist who is working on the incident has determined that there is something wrong with the infrastructure. The Service Hierarchy Browser (SHB) shows that this application instance is running on a Unix server environment. Rather than dragging and dropping that Unix service instance onto the request to cause it to get reassigned to the Unix team, the specialist decides to manually select the Unix team in the Team field and to leave the value in the Service instance field unchanged.

By not specifying which Unix environment is affected, the SLA for that service instance does not get added to the request. Because of that, it is not clear what the resolution target should be for the Unix team, as the targets may differ from one Unix environment to that next.

ITRP now displays a warning whenever the manual reassignment of a request will cause it to go to a team that has no responsibility for the request's service instance.

The selected team does not have any responsibility for the service instance of this request.
This warning should encourage specialists to select a new service instance whenever they believe that the issue is caused by a different service instance than the one that is linked to the request.

The warning is displayed when the new team is not the:
  • first line team of the request’s service instance, or
  • support team of the request’s service instance, or
  • service desk team of the request’s ITRP account.

By encouraging specialists to update the service instance, which in turn automatically updates the Team field, the new team will receive the request with the correct target instead of a 'Best Effort' indication. That should prevent the previous team's resolution target from being violated because the request ended up at the bottom of the new team's inbox.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Faster Images

ImageYou may have already noticed that the inline images that people have included in their notes load much faster. That is especially true for large images.

Note with large image
The reason why these large images get displayed so much quicker now, is that smaller versions of the original images are downloaded when a record is opened. The original image is retrieved only when a user clicks on one of the images to enlarge it.

The result is a more fluent user experience. This is especially useful for specialists when they open a request that has many notes with multiple pictures and screenshots. This performance enhancement allows them to start scanning these notes almost as soon as the request is opened.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Savaco to Deliver ESM and Digital Transformation in Belgium with ITRP

BelgiumSavaco is an IT service provider that specializes in solutions with impact. Helping organizations optimize and automate their processes, as well as enabling them to efficiently collaborate with their providers, is Savaco’s core mission.

Savaco logoSavaco recently expanded its service portfolio with Enterprise Service Management (ESM). This offers Savaco's customers advice and tooling for the implementation of service management processes throughout their organizations. The service makes it possible to bring all employee support together, from IT support to HR and Facilities to Finance.

The unique out-of-the-box benefits that ITRP provides to organizations, such as secure collaboration with other organizations, tracking of SLAs from managed service providers, extensive confidentiality settings and more, makes ITRP the perfect solution for Savaco to offer as the preferred ESM tool for its customers.

The short implementation time and easy set-up of ITRP ensures that customers start receiving the benefits of Enterprise Service Management within days rather than months.

The first benefit for customers as well as Savaco, is that collaboration between them is now seamlessly covered within ITRP. This gives customers easy access to all services provided by Savaco and real-time transparency of all service levels.

We are proud to work with Savaco in achieving ESM excellence for its customers! Read more in Savaco's press release (in Dutch).

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Declined Requests KPIs

KPIThe recent improvement of the Decline feature has made it possible to add another enhancement. Two more KPIs have been added to help organizations understand how well their Incident Management process is performing. The new KPIs are 'Declined Back to Us' and 'Declined by Us'.
Adding a filter to a request report
The KPI 'Declined Back to Us' tracks the number of times a request was declined, causing it to be returned to a team of your support organization. The KPI 'Declined by Us' shows how often a team of your support organization has declined a request.

Declined Requests KPI
When a team of your support organization (i.e. a team that is registered in your organization's ITRP account) declines a request, this request gets picked up by both KPIs. It gets more interesting when a team of a managed service provider declines a request, causing it to be returned to a team of your organization. In such cases, the request shows up in the 'Declined Back to Us' graph of your organization's ITRP account. The managed service provider sees it in the 'Declined by Us' graph of their ITRP account.

If you work for a shared service center that supports a number of local IT departments in your region, then you can see it work the other way around. When one of your organization's teams declines a request back to a team of the IT department at headquarters, then the people at headquarters see this request when they look at the 'Declined Back to Us' KPI. Your people see it when they open the 'Declined by Us' KPI.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

More Completion Reasons

CompletedA few more completion reasons have been made available for requests. After a service desk analyst or specialist has set the status of a request to 'Completed', the Completion reason field becomes available. This field now offers the following additional options:

  • Duplicate - Same as Another Request of Customer
  • Rejected - Rejected by Approver
  • Declined - Declined by Service Provider

Request Completion ReasonsThe extra completion reasons make it easier to select the most appropriate option when completing a request.

They also allow problem managers to identify more precisely the requests which root cause will need to be found and eliminated to prevent future occurrences.