SCSM 2012 Scenario Preview – Requesting offerings by using the Self Service Portal

Over the next months I will write some articles to explain new features and possibilities of Service Manager 2012. Some information is already public, some is not. I will take care that only allowed public information will be published here.

Today, I want to show how users can request IT offerings by using the self service portal. These Screenshots have been extracted from an MMS 2011 Session that has ben recorded – so this is public stuff. Thanks to Anders for the “extraction” work!

Step 1 – Preparation

First, we need to build the Service Catalog with our Offerings. To do that, one or more Service Offering needs to be created and filled up with detailed information, icons, help articles and more.



Within the Service Offering we now need to create the detailed Request Offerings. Most of the Service Offerings will require the user to input date when requesting the offering. Therefore we can add several questions that are either marked as required or optional. Based on these questions, a dynamically generated form will be presented to the users that are requesting offerings.



Now we can map the user questions to attributes of a Runbook Activity (Runbooks can be imported to the CMDB from System Center Orchestrator by using a connector). This is important because the user input will be needed to trigger the Runbook.



Step 2 – User Request for an IT Service

Now as everything is prepared for the consumers, let’s check the Self Service Portal. The configured Service Offerings are visible to the users, based on their User Roles.


After choosing the needed Service Offering – in this case “Cloud Services”, the different Requests Offerings are presented to the User. If needed, the user can open help articles that are published to help them with their request.


Now based on the chosen Request Offering, the user has to answer some questions. In this case a VM Template, a VM Name and some more. It is very important to capture structured and complete data from the user if we later want to successfully execute runbooks in System Center Orchestrator.



Step 3 – Check Service Request and automate execution

After the user completed the wizard, a new Service request is automatically generated that holds all the details that the user provided.


The Service Request has one or more Activities, based on the Service Request Template that was chosen earlier. In this case we only have 2 Activities. The Approval Activity allows a defined Person (e.g. a Team Leader) or a Line Manager to approve the Request. If the approval is done, the next Activity will start. Because the second Activity is a Runbook Activity, a runbook in System Center Orchestrator is triggered.


The input from the User is now translated to Attributes that the runbook needs as input. When the runbook completes, Orchestrator reports back that the execution was successful so that Service Manager can mark the Activity as complete. Because this is the last Activity, the Change Request status will also change to completed and work is …



About Marcel Zehner

Microsoft Azure MVP
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5 Responses to SCSM 2012 Scenario Preview – Requesting offerings by using the Self Service Portal

  1. Johan de Haan says:

    Hi Marcel,

    You say in your post “The configured Service Offerings are visible to the users, based on their User Roles.”. I have created a Service Offering, some Groups and Queues and bound it all together with a User Role (End User). The strange thing is: the defined service offering isn’t showed.

    Only when I select “All work items can be accessed”, “All configuration items can be accessed”, “All catalog items can be accessed” and “All forms can be accessed” the service offering is displayed. When I am more specific about which queue, group of configuration items, group of catalog items or templates this user role has access to, the Service Offering isn’t visible.

    • Marcel Zehner says:

      Hey Johan

      Hmmm, strange. Maybe it depends what exact build you are using.


      • Johan de Haan says:

        Hi Marcel,

        Thanks for your answer. I figured it out: I also had to add the Request Offering to the Group, not only the Service Request which it was bound to.

        Now I have different problem: I only want to show the configuration items (like the users, groups and computers) the Portal User has access to through the configured User Role and CI Groups. When I do a query results it allways shows ALL Configuration Items, not only the ones the user has access to.. Do you understand what I mean?


  2. Jenzer Raffael says:

    Hi Marcel
    We have the following problem:
    We would like creae a Request Offering to our Analysts, so that they are able to create a SR for Monitoring (Überwachungsantrag) of Applicatoin Server, Terminal Servers etc…

    In the RO, i’ve added prompts:
    CPU -> Simple List -> 1, 2, 4
    Vendor -> Simple List -> HP, Supermicro

    But i don’t want to map all prompts to fields…. is it possible to map all prompts into the “notes” field or something like that?

    Thanks for your answer,

    • Marcel Zehner says:


      You need to map every input of a user to a specific field. Using the itnetX ITSM portal, you can combine/concatenate multiple fields and write the result into a single property.


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