17.11.2008 21:01
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CA to Challenge Service Desk Market Status Quo by Unifying Seven Typically Separate Products into One to Drive Greater Value, Lower Cost of Ownership

CA, Inc. (NASDAQ: CA) today announced the planned release of CA Service Desk Manager r12, which is designed to unify into one product what other vendors sell as separate products, including service desk, change management, configuration management database (CMDB), application dependency mapping, knowledge management, support automation, and analytics. The planned combination of this industry-leading functionality with newly published, standardized best practices is designed to help CA customers more quickly and cost-effectively implement a holistic approach to service management. CA also plans new functionality in CA Service Desk Manager r12, including CA CMDB r12 which is being designed to better manage risk associated with changes to the IT environment.

"The complexity and demand on IT service support requires offerings beyond basic core service desk products, which today tend to require the expense and time to justify purchasing multiple add-on products. For example, while the benefits of knowledge management in reducing downtime and reducing costs through user call defection are well known, full-function knowledge management is typically a separate, extra-cost item,” said Kris Brittain, research vice president, Gartner, Inc. "This piecemeal, multi-product approach to service desks, Gartner believes, is falling out of favor as comprehensive, full-function solutions will become the industry norm.”

"Service management organizations are expanding beyond their tactical roots as trouble ticket centers to become the front office for IT, yet they are often hindered by the industry’s multi-product approach to service management tools,” said Brian Bell, senior vice president and general manager, CA Service Management. "They need as many as seven more traditionally separate tools to come together so they can automate routine responses to incidents, identify problems and manage change to eliminate incidents, and guide decisions across IT based on how they relate to the services that drive business value. CA is the first major vendor that will provide these seven inter-related capabilities in a single product together with a holistic approach to implementation, maintenance and migration, so our customers can focus more of their time on maturing processes rather than justifying purchases of additional service desk modules.”

New functionality planned for CA Service Desk Manager r12 includes:

  • Integrated CMDB that is designed to provide more robust support for change management, problem management and compliance. Planned enhancements include improved visualization into change impact and root cause analysis, recording different versions of infrastructure and application elements, and support for the CMDB Federation specification for federation to external data sources including other CMDBs.
  • Change Management Schedule that is designed to provide visibility of upcoming changes in a calendar view to help assess their potential impact on the environment and minimize risks associated with change.
  • Role-Based User Interface designed to personalize the user interface with 18 pre-defined, ITIL® v3-aligned roles to accelerate implementation and allow each user to get the information they need to perform their job more efficiently and effectively.
  • Integrated Business Intelligence powered by Business Objects XI. These reporting capabilities will provide simple drag-and-drop ad-hoc, slice-and-dice reporting to gain intelligence on trends and process performance.
  • Knowledge management enhancements that are designed to improve customer satisfaction, reduce call volumes and speed time-to-resolution, including forums for socialized information-sharing, powerful search capabilities across multiple content types and repositories, and document versioning with on-line rework and roll back.
  • Support for Multi-Tenancy which will segregate data, processes and roles allowing IT support organizations to securely service multiple internal or external customers with differentiated service with the cost of a single software tool.
  • Out-of-the-box integration with other key ITIL and IT service management solutions such as service catalog and asset management.

CA CMDB r12 is currently planned for inclusion as a standard capability of CA Service Desk Manager r12. It also will be available as a standalone product. CA CMDB r12 will provide enhancements that help reduce change and compliance risk, and improve data accuracy and business alignment.

New features planned for CA CMDB r12 include:

  • New Multi-Level Visualization which is designed to include pre-defined filters that help users quickly see the business service impact and risk of proposed changes. It also helps identify root causes of complex performance and service availability problems.
  • Federation Capabilities that are designed to provide a complete view of how IT components are configured including hardware, software and physical and virtual servers across mainframe and distributed environments. This will include support for the CMDB Federation (CMDBf) specification which provides a faster, repeatable method for implementing data from other sources, including other CMDBs, as recommended by the ITIL v3 Configuration Management System approach.
  • Configuration Item (CI) Versioning which is designed to provide baselines for approved CI configurations, historical snapshots of CI configuration changes, and automated comparisons to facilitate compliance reporting and pinpoint root causes of problems caused by planned and unplanned changes.

What Customers Are Saying

"Buffalo State College employed CA’s Service Desk back in 2003 to better facilitate the wide range of support and services that our IT department provides to nearly 15,000 faculty, staff and students,” said Mary Jo Graham, manager, User Account Processes, Buffalo State College. "Our recent collaboration with CA on the beta project for CA Service Desk Manager r12 leaves us looking forward to implementation as it promises excellent enhancements and functionality. This is one of the benefits of working with CA—the direct involvement of its current customers in the development process of new deliverables. Many of the features members of the customer team requested have been implemented into CA Service Desk Manager r12 and should prove to greatly augment the services we offer our constituents.”

"As a long-time customer of CA’s service management products, the streamlined approach CA is taking with its products and services is a welcome shift,” said Harry Butler, Information Technology project manager at Elbit Systems of America, an international defense electronics company. "Release 12 of CA Service Desk Manager will offer our organization several new features in a single solution under a single license. Previously I would have had to purchase tools individually to get all the new capabilities.”

CA Service Desk Manager r12, a CA Enterprise IT Management solution, is being developed to help organizations drive business value from IT and effectively improve IT economics. CA solutions, such as CA Service Desk Manager r12, are designed to help lower the total cost of ownership of IT by providing faster time-to-value and reducing IT costs through better integration and automation.

About CA

CA (NASDAQ: CA) is the world’s leading independent IT management software company. With CA's Enterprise IT Management (EITM) vision and expertise, organizations can more effectively govern, manage and secure IT to optimize business performance and sustain competitive advantage. For more information, visit www.ca.com.

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Copyright © 2008 CA. All Rights Reserved. One CA Plaza, Islandia, N.Y. 11749. All trademarks, trade names, service marks and logos referenced herein belong to their respective companies. ITIL ® is a Registered Trade Mark, and a Registered Community Trade Mark of the Office of Government Commerce, and is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Each new feature or functionality included in future releases is subject to change based on a number of factors, including but not limited to internal and external beta testing, development plan changes, and feedback from customers and users. Accordingly, the product may have different features and/or functionality than stated in this document. CA does not provide legal advice. No software product referenced herein shall serve as a substitute for the reader’s compliance with any laws (including but not limited to any act, statue, regulation, rule, directive, standard, policy, administrative order, executive order, etc. (collectively, "Laws”)) referenced herein. The reader should consult with competent legal counsel regarding any such Laws.

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