The System Center team would like to take the opportunity to squash rumors floating around about the future of Service Manager and the nature of the investment that will be made to the product over the next couple of years. We would like to provide a breakdown of the facts, perceptions, conclusions and current thinking and a plan of action.
Some facts about Service Manager
- Microsoft has and continues to invest considerable time and resources on Service Manager
- Service Manager enjoys a large and growing adoption with customers across all geo’s in a varying range of deployment sizes.
- Service Manager enjoys a sizeable eco system of partners and ISVs providing value added services and addressing key gaps.
- Service Manager is a core component of the System Center suite and will continue to be, enhancing productivity for our customers
- Starting with Update Rollup 2, Service Manager will have quarterly updates as apart of the System Center update roll ups
Some of the perceived challenges from customer and partner ecosystem point of view
- Product stability and usability needs improvements.
- Service Packs, Update Rollups and release since 2012 lacked significant features and fixes.
- Customers and user community feedback on product improvements are not taken into immediate consideration.
- Roadmap for Service Manager has not been available.
Apparent customers and partner ecosystem conclusions from these observations.
- Service Manager is or being placed in sustained engineering with no future.
- Service Manager is not feature in Gartner Magic Quadrant or Pink certified therefore Microsoft is not interested in Service Manager.
With this context in place, lets look at Service Manager team’s perspective.
- System Center recognizes the value of Service Manager brings to the market, to our customer and to our ecosystem.
- IT industry is in transition with cloud as a huge disruptor, and we strongly believe Service Manager has a pivotal role to play in the world of cloud optimized IT.
- System Center is committed to help out customers successfully embrace the cloud and reap the benefits of the cloud, with Service Manager playing its part in this journey.
- Infrastructure investments to improve stability, usability and performance will be the first areas of focus in 2014. Our investments will expand into other areas once these goals are met.
The System Center team has heard the feedback fro the customers, partners, ISVs and the larger Service Manager ecosystem. The following areas are clearly held as priorities for investment:
- Console Performance & Scale
- Analyst / Web Portal
- Data Warehouse and Reporting
- Workflow improvements
We have and continue to review feedback from our customers, communities and our MVPs and investment priorities correlate to the feedback.
What are some immediate changes you can see to product and process?
- Update rollups starting with Update Rollup 2 will continue in a regular rhythm and will see increasing payloads of issues being addressed. The payloads will be improved in quality and quantity, compared to the past updates.
- You will also be witnessing improved turnaround times for RFCs (Request for Collaboration) and RFHs (Request for Hotfix’s) for customer priority issues.
To support these efforts and bring about consistent quality updates,
- The Service Manager team is adopting an agile engineering methodology, working with our ISVs, MVPs, and customers very closely to obtain direct and quick feedback, using the Service Manager TAP
To further increase our engagement, you will also experience the following