There are three basic tool types that are covered in every service organization:

  • workflow tools for controlling workflows, including resource infrastructure registration
  • system tools for performing / supporting technical operations
  • tools for general functions, such as BPM tools for specifying process and organization, PPM tools for projects and programs, or reporting tools

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Read more about this layout and related tool strategies in the blog "Does your FMIS fit your management system?" (in Dutch)
For a simple maturity model for the use of tooling in service organizations, read the blog "A simple maturity model for Service Excellence". (in Dutch)

The SURVUZ Foundation works with its Product Partners to further optimize the most common management tools, in order to better support the workflows of the service organization. The certified tools that passed the USM audit are listed here.

Positioning of tools

Tool suppliers often opt for either an ERP approach covering as many of the above functions as possible in one product, or for the excellent execution of one specific function in a Best-of-Breed approach. The first strategy requires integration of all modules involved, with some functions remaining underexposed. The second strategy requires an integrating facility between the relevant point solutions, which is handled either directly or via a broker (e.g. Zapier).

Help desk or service management tools originally focused on workflow management goals. They often integrate that with the support of common functions, especially in terms of ITIL practices - with which, unfortunately, they mainly display a ingrained inefficiency. The vast majority of these tools do not have standardized workflows that support integrated processes.

FMISs or IWMSs are facility management tools that usually focus on supporting technical actions in facility disciplines (system actions). There is mainly competition between these tools in the sense of how well they cover those disciplines (building management, access control, room reservation, security, etc.). For this reason, these tools often lack the focus on their workflow functionality, and routines are not based on integrated process models.

Specifying the organization and activities ('people' and 'process', the who does what) is often supported with BPM tools (business process modeling tools). These BPM tools often have extensive functions for designing processes. Here too, attention is mainly focused on establishing practices that, in turn, are not based on integrated process models.

The structured introduction of a new routine, and the change management that comes with it, is often carried out on a project basis. Project management tools are often used separately from workflow tools, while in fact they only serve to help coordinate certain activities of an integrated process model (often changes). Integration between project management tools and workflow tools is therefore crucial for a coherent set of routines.

System tools in IT are available in a wide variety. There is a choice of numerous products for every platform and every conceivable function. For an IT service provider these are, for example, application management tools, system management tools, network management tools, etc. For the other facility disciplines, a wide variety of functions is also available. For a building manager, these are, for example, tools for room reservation, metering, visitor registration or maintenance planning.

This post is also available in: Nederlands