ITSM news

Fleet has added a maintenance window feature to its namesake open source device management platform that enables IT teams to schedule updates based on open slots available on the calendars of end users.

In addition, Fleet is taking advantage of generative artificial intelligence (AI) to provide explanations in the calendar events to help users understand why any update is needed and what they should expect to happen, both as that update is made and after it is completed.

IT teams, of course, can schedule updates in off hours but they may not know what impact those updates have had until the next day.
Fleet CEO Mike McNeal said Fleet is now making it possible for IT administrators to employ a less intrusive approach that allows them to collaboratively schedule updates in a way that, in addition to minimizing disruptions, should give employees a greater sense of control. Just as importantly, this capability makes is possible for IT teams to provide a more personal touch, he added.

In general, most IT service management (ITSM) teams are increasingly being evaluated based on the quality of the user experience provided. In many cases, end users will stop updates that disrupt their workflow, which may lead to a critical security vulnerability not being patched in as timely a manner as it should. The quandary that IT teams frequently find themselves in is that while the machines being used generally belong to the organization, many end users retain a lot of control over when updates are applied.

It’s not clear to what degree the relationship between IT teams and their constituents has improved in recent years, but there are still plenty of instances where employees complain. Most IT teams are doing the best they can within a limited set of options, but they often have a limited understanding of which processes that might be occurring across the scope of any given day are more critical than others. One event, from their perspective, appears pretty much the same as any other. Of course, invariably, the one event that might get disrupted turns out to be among the most critical.

These days it’s not uncommon for organizations to regularly poll employees about the quality of the IT experience. IT leaders that fail to improve those ratings will soon find themselves having some awkward conversations with their fellow senior leaders about why those experiences are not improving. After all, employees are more likely to complain about IT to their business unit leader than they are directly to a CIO.

Hopefully, a little extra visibility coupled with some AI help will reduce the odds there will ever be a disruption. In fact, as AI continues to advance, IT teams should be able to asynchronously offload more tasks to digital assistants that they will autonomously complete. IT teams will still need to make sure those tasks are completed accurately, but the days when every IT task was needed to be manually completed in a synchronized manner are coming to an end.

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