BLOG State of the Service Desk 5: Transformation, Consolidation and Integration

Ben O'Loghlin

This blog series explores the topics discussed in's State of the Service Desk report. More details at the bottom of this blog article.

The service desk function is evolving over time. Current trends extend the scope and the range of the service desk within organizations. The following sections discuss these trends and their impact on the service desk.

Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is the replacement of non-digital systems and workflows with digital systems and workflows, and the creation of new value chains enabled by digital technologies and processes.

“Digital Transformation is not only the digitization of internal business processes but the increased reliance on external 3rd parties to deliver end services to customers that requires bi-directional integration with external service management to ensure a good customer experience, efficient and cost effective delivery of the service.”

– General Manager Operations, Government

In the enterprise context, the digital transformation of the service desk function began many years ago, but most recently the drive for transformation across the enterprise has led to rapid growth in the number of services requiring support.

Enterprise Service Management

Technology leaders are finding that many of their enterprises and customers are ready for transformation. If however the service desk doesn’t keep up and partner to create integrated solutions, or is otherwise not a trusted partner for other lines of business, then other parts of the organization may launch their own self-sufficient transformation initiatives (“Shadow IT”).

These initiatives, while meeting immediate requirements, may miss the wider opportunities for collaboration, consolidation, cross-silo workflows, and shared enterprise data models.

“IT Service Desks are becoming Business Service Centers to support and provision all types of services for Business Service Delivery.”

– General Manager Operations, Government

Some contributors were running basic ITSM service desks with simple tools that in some case weren’t even natively handling basic ITIL processes like asset management.

At the other extreme other IT service desks were exploiting the full potential of consolidated enterprise service management, and in the one platform were handing ITSM, customer service, HR, Facilities, Finance and Managed Services.

“All service tickets across the enterprise come into the IT service desk.”

– Senior Director of IT Operations, Internet

IT Service Desk Consolidation

Contributors reported a lot of service desk consolidation activities. This refers to the integration IT service functions from different geographies, and/or from different mergers or acquisitions.

These may involve migration from one tool to the chosen central platform, standardizing data models and workflows, reshaping the geographic distribution of support teams, and other activities.

In these situations, flexibility and speed of implementation were key to “quickly digesting” the consolidation so that IT could go on with outward-facing transformation activities.

Next – Part 6: Shift Left

In late 2020 conducted 23 research interviews with service desk executives, managers and practitioners, to explore the State of the Service Desk in the post-COVID19 world.The interview results were synthesised into a report that covers the following topics:

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Introduction
  3. Service Desk Metrics
  4. Increase in Demand
  5. Transformation, Consolidation and Integration
  6. Shift Left
  7. Automation and Orchestration
  8. Knowledge Management
  9. People Management
  10. Support Channels
  11. Data Quality
  12. Tools
  13. Conclusion

This blog series will serialise the topics listed above. The full report is available for download at you would like to discuss any of these topics please get in touch via the website or book a meeting at

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