Using Business Service Management to Succeed in a Tough Economy

Whether the economy is booming or facing a crunch, one factor plays a critical role in business: IT. In today’s business environment, almost all business activities are tied with the IT department. However, most of the departmental heads have no idea of the impact of complex technology on their respective business processes. Many a times, department heads have no means of identifying and preventing bottlenecks within applications so that end users are not affected. In today’s tough economy, Business Service Management can come to the rescue of many IT managers as well as departmental heads to ensure a smooth running of business processes.

The importance of knowing end to end performance is not only applicable for large enterprises, but smaller entities too. In fact, monitoring end to end performance of applications is more important for small businesses, considering that they function on a very tight margin. In order to stay on top of any performance issue and to effectively solve it, business owners need application monitoring tools through which they can monitor whether their business services are functioning properly. Such application monitoring would also inform them of any bottlenecks in advance and prevent any large scale impact on end users. Business Service Management enables both the teams to do just that.

Business Service Management solutions help bridge the gap between the departmental heads and the IT team. When a BSM solution is put to work, the business department can work in coordination with the IT department to ensure that all the services are available and any potential problems may be solved before they start affecting end users. BSM helps in detection of IT issues, tracing their root problem and solving them quickly.

With Business Service Management,

o Issues related to business-critical applications can be dealt with proactively
o Departmental heads can start prioritizing tasks according to their importance
o Information can be presented according to the role of the person concerned
o IT Service Management is easier to put into practice

Businesses hence need to consider Business Service Management as a necessary component in order to know the end to end performance of all their critical applications. However, businesses are sometimes forced to choose between two extreme BSM solutions: one which is inexpensive but lacks functionality, and another, which is expensive and needs a lot of manpower to support it.

An ideal Business Service Management would be one which is integrated, affordable and easy to use. A business should not have to make a compromise in quality due to the cost of the BSM solution. An ideal solution would allow end to end performance monitoring as well as management Service Level Agreement. It would also not require any manpower to manage it.

Until sometime ago, only larger APM vendors used to offer BSM solutions; even then, these solutions were expensive and complicated. But now, with the popularity of Business Service Management, other vendors have started offering affordable and easy to use solutions which can be applied in small businesses as well.

The increased dependency on IT for business critical functions has made Business Service Management as well as IT Service Management a must for any business. Both IT managers and departmental heads can work together to ensure that business services are available to end users without a problem.

The Quick and Easy Way to Accept Online Payment Today

Ecommerce

Online shopping volume continues to grow at a breathless rate; online shoppers spent $30 billion during the holiday season last year, a 30% increase from 2004. The full-featured online payment gateways make this growth possible. A shopper is never more than a few keystrokes away from his purchase – he can act on a whim before his judgment has time to kick in. And there’s no reason for any small business or individual for that matter to miss out.

There is still a common misconception that to do business online you need to apply for a Merchant Account, sign up with a Secure Payment Gateway and integrate the two, with all the accompanying effort and expense.

You don’t.

The Slow Way: Merchant Accounts & Secure Payment Gateways

Most everyone has heard of Paypal, but not everyone understands how Paypal (and other third-party Online Payment Processors), Merchant Accounts and payment gateways relate to or differ from each other. A Merchant Account with your bank or other financial institution allows you to accept credit cards. To get one, you usually have to go through a credit check and pay a setup fee of $100 or more. Your website needs to connect to the Merchant Account, and this is where the Secure Payment Gateway comes in. Your Merchant Account should identify one or more payment gateways that are compatible with their system, and to use one of these you can expect a setup fee of several hundred dollars, monthly fees, and per-transaction fees.

The Quick Way: Third Party Processors

Third party online payment processors greatly simplify the whole process – you simply pay a (usually higher) percentage of sales as a transaction fee. The payment processors available today will allow you to accept online payments within a day or two after a simple verification process, without any hassle of qualifying for merchant accounts. Usually no deposits are required and there are no monthly fees. These are often the best option for small businesses and startups to be able to do business online very quickly.

Accepting credit card payments online is standard for any online payment system since the majority of online shoppers pay with their credit cards. However, some 10% of buyers actually don’t have or prefer not to pay via credit card, so you may also want to consider accepting online checks, debit cards and digital cash. Many of the current online payment services also allow customers to transfer funds directly from their bank account. The more flexibility you give your customers, the more likely they are to make a purchase.

Get Started!

Thousands of small businesses and potential entrepreneurs still hold back from doing business online, mostly due to imaginary technical or logistical obstacles. With third party online payment processors, you can turn a business idea into revenue within a day. Look around and assess your options – don’t just go with the bank’s recommended Merchant Account and the large payment gateways such as Authorize.net and Cybercash. You will save on setup and monthly fees by starting off with a smaller third party processor. The downside is that you will pay higher transaction costs per sale, but this is worth it in the short term. When your business is up and running and bringing in cash, you will have the option and means to consider getting a Merchant Account.

Business Service Management – How Your Business Can Benefit From It

Businesses in most of the industries today rely on their IT infrastructure for delivery of their products or services. Despite this, business owners and IT managers face difficulty in figuring out the performance of their IT infrastructure and analyzing how that performance affects their bottom line at any given point of time. If you are wondering the same about your IT infrastructure, the answer to your queries is Business Service Management (BSM). Let’s discuss some aspects of Business Service Management and how it can benefit your business.

What Business Service Management Is

BSM is a way to monitor IT services so that one can understand its impact on the business’ bottom line. Through it, IT managers can monitor application performance so that they can identify, foresee and solve application bottlenecks. In case of larger organizations, the business owners and IT managers need to know which department if going to be affected the most in case of an outage, so that its impact can be minimized. Through BSM, the interests of the business can be protected by monitoring, tracking and managing the investment and operational aspects of the IT department. BSM hence ensures that IT processes are aligned with business processes for the maximum benefit of the business.

How you can use Business Service Management for your business

If your business depends on IT department for providing services or products or your customers, Business Service Management can be extremely useful to you. Even if you have a large company with a huge IT department, a BSM solution can help you undertake effective ITSM. When you have a Business Service Management solution in place, in case of a system failure, you will be able to know exactly where the error has occurred on a real-time basis. You will hence be able to analyze the financial impact of the failure as well as instruct the IT manager of steps to take to ensure that application performance is up to the mark.

Some of the many benefits of a BSM solution for your business are:

  • It ensures application performance is up to the mark at all times
  • BSM also ensures the availability of business-critical applications
  • A BSM solution helps IT managers to ensure that service level agreement conditions are met
  • You can make IT service management easier with a customized BSM solution
  • You can understand the impact of a system failure on your bottom line through Business Service Management
  • A BSM solution will help you avoid downtime of applications by identifying bottlenecks and figuring out their cause
  • Through a BSM solution, you can reduce losses of downtime and improve productivity of your business