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ITIL :: View topic - Different Databases for Incident and Problem Management
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Different Databases for Incident and Problem Management

 
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wolfhard
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Joined: Mar 14, 2005
Posts: 26
Location: Brussels, Belgium

PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 7:12 am    Post subject: Different Databases for Incident and Problem Management Reply with quote

Ladies and Gentlemen,

is it acceptable to have two different tools (software applications) to support Incident Management and Problem Management?

My company is a global HelpDesk operator and is involved in end-user Application Support for Fortune 100 companies.

Incident Management is done with the aid of a web based application by a large ERP software provider. However this application is rather cumbersome to use at times. Also customization requires specialist knowledge. Making connections between incidents is to do Problem Mangement is vey difficult.

Also most of the problem management is done by the customer and not by us. However we play a crucial role in this process since we are providing the frontline support.

My question therfore is, is it common practice (best practice, maybe?) to have a different application to record all the Incident descriptions and numbers possibly related to the same problem with a different application. I am thinking of an application like the Mantis Bug Tracker open source project for example.

Thank you for any feedback and help.
Kind regards
Wolfhard Aring
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javierarcal
Senior Itiler


Joined: May 27, 2005
Posts: 79
Location: Madrid-Spain

PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 6:58 pm    Post subject: About Problem Management Reply with quote

Hi wolfhard,

From my point of view there is no problem in having two different databases for storing incidents and problems, but this two physical data bases should be connected.

It should be a logical relationship between incidents and problems and between problems and RFC although they are stored in different physical data bases

Remember that the main goals provided of implementing Problem Management is to be pro-active, so we can prevent incidents from occurring by identifying weaknesses or errors in the infrastructure and to propose applicable resolutions, and to improve investigation, diagnosis and resolution by the use of a knowledge data base with all symptoms and work around solutions.

It is quite important to implement also a knowledge data base with known errors and work around resolutions.

Also take care about the role of the people who is working in incident management and problem management, for Incident Management the main task is to restablished the system as soon as possible, but for Problem Management the main task is to find the root cause of those incidents, the time required is not so important but to find the subjacent cause of the incident.

Hope it helps
Javier
ITIL Consultant
Madrid-Spain
javierarcal@eresmas.com
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wolfhard
Itiler


Joined: Mar 14, 2005
Posts: 26
Location: Brussels, Belgium

PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 8:18 pm    Post subject: Ticketing, Knowledge Base with extra Problem Management Appl Reply with quote

Thanks a million for the help.

We are using a ticketing system to record incoming incidents (web based) and to escalate to 2nd level technical support when needed (online via web). The status of the ticket is therefore changed. By specifying in a number of drop-down boxes the kind of incident, 2nd level support is able to create reports to try and identify reoccuring problems. The 2nd level support is not in-house since we only provide the 1st level support for the customer.

We are also using a searchabel knowledge base (PHP, MySQL web application) to record resolutions to known problems. However it is the 1st level support that updates this knowledge base.

My idea is to have a different application for Problem Management, to be more specific www.mantisbt.org. Although 2nd level support uses the Incident Mangagement system to create reports, the drop-down boxes are nto really efficient in finding reoccuring problems.

The technicians in 1st level KNOW what the reoccuring problems are and can much easier identify possible PROBLEMS and record these in the specific application which, because it is web based, can then be accessed by 2nd and even 3rd level.

Does this sound OK? How is it done best?
Thank you very much.
Kind reagards.
Wolfhard Aring
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javierarcal
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Joined: May 27, 2005
Posts: 79
Location: Madrid-Spain

PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 11:29 pm    Post subject: Some ideas Reply with quote

Hi Wolfhard,

Your current structure seems to be efficient and well organised,

From my point o view what ITIL proposed is to a have a Service Desk or "0" level which is Service Desk (The main purpose of them is to track all incidents and to escalate to the next level and when it is possible to solve the ticket)

The second level (Incident Management) which main objective is to solve incidents as quick as possible and to identify problems, and its subjacent cause and give work-around solutions to minimize service disruption.

The third level will be problem management which goal is to find permanent solutions to subjacent causes of know errors.

As I understood from your post, currently is 1st level (Incident Management) who is in charge of maintaining knowledge database, really knowledge data base should be reviewed by Change Management, some people with a strong technical background should reviewed proposed solutions done by Incident Management before making this solutions available in your knowledege data base to the rest of your support team.

Also take care that a problem could be raised not only from Incident management due to recurrent problems and also could be raised from monitoring systems or from a change request done by users.

Problem Management should be proactive also not only reactive to recurrent incidents.

ITIL propose processes not specific SW tools, you can follow best practices with a lot of tools you only need to customize this tools to follow ITIL standards.

Hope it helps
Javier
ITIL Consultant
Madrid-Spain
javierarcal@eresmas.com
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wolfhard
Itiler


Joined: Mar 14, 2005
Posts: 26
Location: Brussels, Belgium

PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2005 8:03 pm    Post subject: Different Databases for Incident and Problem Management Reply with quote

Thanks again for the competent advice. I really appreciate it a lot.

My company is a global, multi-location HelpDesk service provider, mainly on a ServiceDesk (front line, 1st level) basis.

Our management has decided to implement ITIL and start off with Incident and Problem Management on all projects. Most projects are concerned with application support for business critical processes.

Is this possible to do? Through my studies of ITIL I have come to understand that all processes are more or less interdependant. However for our core business Incident Management (+ Service Desk) is the most crucial. If the next process to be implemented is Problem Management, is it possible to get by with doing just that? I mean, not implementing Configuration, Change Management?

i.e. how do you help your customer to implement ITIL if you basically only run the HelpDesk for them?

Kind regards
Wolfhard Aring
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javierarcal
Senior Itiler


Joined: May 27, 2005
Posts: 79
Location: Madrid-Spain

PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2005 11:44 pm    Post subject: Service Desk, Incident Management,Problem Management Reply with quote

Hi Wolfhard,

I have work for a company which offers a global, multi-location HelpDesk service provider for different customers like your current company and we follow ITIL best practices.

You can follow ITIL best practices in your main tasks a ServiceDesk (front line, 1st level) and Incident Management, but I really think that you can also assume at least partially problem management role, when you detect a common root cause for several incidents, you have detected a problem and you should record it and may be start dealing with these problems.

May be in a next stage your customer decide that is his own IT system who will try to solve the problems you have detected or may be they decide to outsource problem management completely to your company. (What can be a good commercial opportunity for your company...Smile

I really think that you will try to find a tool, may be a web oriented tool for problem management so you can work together with your customer IT department in registering and solving problem solutions.

Best Regards
Javier
--
ITIL Consultant
Madrid-Spain
javierarcal@eresmas.com
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