Working from a Single Platform: Advantages of Integrated Project Management and IT Service Management

According to Educause, “digital integrations” are one of the top goals for higher education institutions in 2019. The decentralization of application procurement coupled with the organic growth of technologies underpinning these institutions’ operations is making IT environments in education more complex, and the same holds true to a large degree in government and healthcare. Consider, for example, the imperative for healthcare institutions to provide integration and interoperability in both electronic health records (EHR) and healthcare technology itself—including fitness and health wearables—while operating within fiscal constraints.

At least part of the answer lies in the integration of project management, which is responsible for the planning and completion of institutional technology projects, and IT service management (ITSM), which is responsible for the design, configuration, and management of the services that are to be delivered using those technologies. Projects such as the unification or integration of EHR systems during hospital consolidations can greatly benefit from the participation of service management product and/or process owners, who can facilitate the inclusion of new or modified systems into configuration management, as well as adjust for expanded capacity and availability needs. The consolidation of government IT systems poses similar issues and can benefit from the joint view of ITSM and project portfolio management.

If the management of the entire project portfolio can be integrated with the tools used for service management, making the data within the tool accessible to both disciplines, there will be much more opportunity for coordination and collaboration, reducing the likelihood of delays, pitfalls, and unexpected outcomes.

Consolidations, whether in education, government, or healthcare, carry high levels of risk and myriad opportunities for error. Every opportunity to coordinate and collaborate should be taken to avoid adverse technical and fiscal consequences. And while consolidations are just one example of how and why project management and service management capabilities should be working together, the indications—and contraindications—are very clear.

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