Ivanti, which holds its first European conference in Madrid this June, earlier this year announced its cloud-delivered AI (artificial intelligence) application for service management – the Ivanti Hub and Bot. This seeks to redefine the traditional concept of user self-service by delivering intelligent virtual support agents (VSA) with support which are contextual, conversational and intuitive. (Ivanti is the name adopted since the merger of Heat Software and LANdesk.)
“With AI-powered consumer solutions such as Siri and Alexa permeating our lives, users in today’s digital business have high expectations when it comes to computing self-service,” said Ian Aitchison, Senior Product Director, Ivanti. “With the release of our innovative Hub and Bot app, we’re delivering a game-changing self-service experience for the modern business-user, with conversational and interactive self-service options that put action and answers right into the hands of users, in the way they want them.”
Ivanti Hub and Bot app for service management
The Ivanti Hub and Bot app for service management integrates with a customer’s overall service management workflow. It provides automation which assists service desk resourcing.
Available for Ivanti Service Manager Cloud customers, the starting point is the Ivanti Service Manager: Help Desk Essentials service (see below). This provides pre-built and simplified help desk options from the cloud.
In effect the Ivanti Hub offers an intelligent, local support presence for end user employees to:
- obtain help
- find information
- self-manage assets.
Assisted by AI and automation, users interact with the local app to perform common actions like:
- creating support tickets
- making requests from a catalog
- searching for knowledge
- installing new applications.
The result should reduce, or eliminate, the need to find self-service portals or to fill out complex forms. With the Ivanti Bot, users interact with the conversational AI (located inside the Hub). This can happen by typing or speaking which drives the automated self-service fulfillment. (The Ivanti Hub and Bot app is available for Windows and Mac systems, iPhone and Android mobile devices.)
Ivanti Service Manager: Help Desk Essentials
Ivanti Service Manager: Help Desk Essentials provides pre-built and instantly available help desk capabilities from within the cloud. This is a pre-packaged offering, derived from Ivanti’s conventional existing service management solution. The objective is to improve response efficiency so that:
- end users are happier and, therefore, more productive
- support costs reduce and/or the time to value is faster.
As a solution this should satisfy a need to get up and running quickly. Two possible examples are:
- replacement of an existing ITSM tool before cutting an existing service
- where a rapid time to live operation is critical for business success.
This cloud-based service management solution offers:
- incident management, request, self-service, catalog and knowledge management
- workflow and automation.
What does this mean
Gartner has predicted (albeit it in 2017) that by 2020, 25% of customer service and support operations will integrate VSA technology across engagement channels, where VSAs are virtual assistants which provide support to the IT service management processes alongside IT service desks. They provide information to address common questions with have chatbot-like features. Ivanti appears to be delivering on what Gartner predicted.
As always, the key will be Ivanti customer acceptance. To make matters more complex, this will depend on two inter-related but different factors – service desk management and ‘customers’ (end users interacting with service management processes). If the Ivanti Hub and Bot app assists both, then many will be happy, including those responsible for containing IT support costs. In this context, VSAs have the potential to improve IT service and aid AI become acceptable.