You are on page 1of 9

White Paper

The 5 Upgrade Headaches…

And How To Avoid Them

• Are you in desperate need of new Service Desk functionality

to support business objectives?
• Is the prospect of upgrading your IT Service Management
(ITSM) solution too complex and expensive to face?
• Have your customizations and integrations locked you into
your outdated version?
• Has your vendor abandoned your support?
• Are you tired of waiting for new features that never arrive?

In today’s business environment, rapidly changing markets

are driving increased demand for new enterprise application
functionality to support the business. For many organizations,
however, there are significant barriers to accessing the new
technology they need. This white paper identifies these common
barriers and outlines how our assyst ITSM solution avoids them
by design.
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p2

Table of Contents
Executive Summary 3

Headache #1: Application Complexity 4

Headache #2: Migrating Customizations and Integrations 6

Headache #3: Withdrawn Support and Solution Sun-Setting 9

Headache #4: Too Little, Too Late 11

Headache #5: Version Incompatibility – Multi-Stage Upgrades 12

The assyst ITSM Solution – Upgradeable by Design 13

About Axios Systems 16

Further Resources 19

Copyright Notice
© Copyright Axios Systems 2009. The information, which is contained in this document, is the property of Axios Systems. The contents of
the document must not be reproduced or disclosed wholly or in part or used for purposes other than that for which it is supplied without
the prior written permission of Axios Systems.
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p3

Executive Summary
Enterprise applications should deliver strategic value to customers, not drain
resources through inefficient application management. The problems caused by
application upgrades have become so commonplace however that they are often
accepted as ‘a necessary evil’. At Axios Systems, we believe it is the responsibility
of the vendor to ensure customers can upgrade quickly and easily to access the
functionality they need and gain maximum value from their investment.

This white paper outlines the five most common problems relating to upgrading
an enterprise IT Service Management (ITSM) solution, and how assyst avoids or
minimizes these issues to reduce costs and optimize the value that our customers

If your organization suffers from any of these upgrade headaches, then read on:

1. Application complexity
2. Migrating customizations and integrations
3. Withdrawn support and solution sun-setting
4. Too little, too late
5. Version incompatibility - multi-stage upgrades
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p4

Headache #1: Application Complexity

Many IT Service Desk and IT Service Management (ITSM) solutions offered by the
‘framework’ vendors, comprise a patchwork of acquired technologies built up over
the years to provide comprehensive ITSM functionality. Instead of expanding the
functional footprint to meet customer needs through organic development, which
naturally leads to more cohesive solutions, they acquired smaller technology vendors
and integrated the products into their portfolios. As a result, the applications form
a complex network of software components with their own platform and hardware
requirements. In many cases, each of these modules must be upgraded individually,
in the correct logical order, to achieve overall upgrade success. Individual modules
may also have their own research and development cycles, product roadmaps and
upgrade processes, which together combine to create a very difficult and complex
upgrade project—and this is before taking customizations into account.

When one manager of a certain framework vendor’s ITSM solution was asked to
map out a project plan for upgrading to the latest version, he indicated this:

. Milestone 1: Begin
. Milestone 2: False sense of hope
. Milestone 3: Unwelcome sense of reality
. Milestone 4: Depression
. Milestone 5: Desperation
. Milestone 6: Quit your job
. Milestone 7: Go fishing

The impact of upgrading a framework vendor’s ITSM solution is a long and arduous
upgrade project, which can last many months or even years. The effort involved,
combined with a lack of internal IT resources and the vendors’ inability to support
their own customers, has resulted in third-party consulting organizations entering the
market to manage and support clients’ upgrade projects. Engaging a consulting
organization equates to a huge capital cost that further adds to the Total Cost of
Ownership (TCO), reduces Return On Investment (ROI) and decreases the business
value of the solution by impacting end users over an extended period of time. On
top of this, the complexity of the solution means there is considerable potential for
the upgrade project to fail entirely and force a complete reimplementation, which
could last another 12-18 months.
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p5

At Axios Systems, we have uniquely avoided this problem by utilizing a single,

unified application architecture, driven by organic product development spanning
over 20 years. The assyst solution architecture was designed from inception as one
application to provide comprehensive support for—and interaction between—all
ITIL processes within a single application. It is not a system of modular components
stitched together from disparate, acquired technologies that have been hastily
integrated. As a result, the application architecture is a robust, cohesive unit—
sharing a single, centralized CMDB that can be upgraded in a single action.
Download the
Full Whitepaper
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p7

About Axios Systems

Axios Systems is the world’s leading provider of IT Service Management (ITSM)
solutions. Its customer-centric approach, combined with its award-winning
software, enables customers to improve their Service Delivery and Support and
deliver Continual Service Improvement (CSI) by helping to align and realign IT
services to changing business needs, supporting business processes and improving

Its core solution, assyst, built around its Configuration Management Database
(CMDB), intuitively steers users through the ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure
Library) processes which help organizations transition toward the next generation
of ITSM and Service Desks. assyst offers a unique lifecycle approach to ITSM with
the integration of all ITIL processes (including Incident, Capacity, Problem, Change,
Asset, Configuration and Service Level Management), twelve of which have been
verified by Pink Elephant’s PinkVERIFY service as compatible with industry best
practices (based on ITIL V3), in a single, out-of-the-box application. It empowers
management with a dashboard-based transparent view of real-time performance
against Service Level Agreements (SLA) and Operations Level Agreements (OLA)
using Web 2.0 technologies.

Implementing assyst into an organization optimizes IT infrastructure efficiency,

reduces overheads and lowers the total cost of IT ownership (TCO) helping to
ensure a significant return on investment (ROI) with rapid time to value. Axios also
offers a comprehensive set of consulting and training services to support ITSM best
practices in an organization.

Axios is headquartered in the UK, with offices across Europe, the Americas,
Middle East and Asia Pacific. Axios’ global presence is further strengthened with a
worldwide network of partners.

For more information, visit:

ITIL® is a Registered Trade Mark, and a Registered Community Trade Mark of

the Office of Government Commerce, and is registered in the U.S. Patent and
Trademark Office.
The 5 Upgrade Headaches…And How To Avoid Them p19

Further Resources
Upgrading your ITSM Tool? Think about the TCO webcast - available for playback
on the Axios Systems website.
Download the
Full Whitepaper