Inventory module is too basic that it's actually restrictive

Hello There,


I find the inventory module to be very basic and hence limiting in terms of use cases that it can serve. For example, It's only obvious that I would want to hide some of the assets from some of my agents/users. But the only two ways I could find to do that is by using either of these 2 flags (see screenshot below). while defining my `Roles

Now, firstly this is a non-feature disguised as a feature. Because the combination of two flags only allows you to either:-

- show everything to everyone or 

- Show agents only the assets that are assigned to their Group.  

There is a reason ITIL defines Asset Management specific roles. You cannot disregard them completely and still call a product ITIL compliant. This all or nothing approach for Asset Visibility is not only limiting, it starts dictating (as a side effect of missing adequate Asset Roles) how I should design my Support Groups. In our setup, we have created Groups so that I can hide certain assets from other agents. I don't want my Asset Visibility feature to start dictating the design of my support group, I am forced to do this because the tool doesn't have a sophisticated asset visibility mechanism. I guess I'm repeating myself here, I hope made the point!?!

Not only this, the tool assumes that a `Group` is a way to segregate ’items’ in ITSM tool. A complete misappropriation of the concept of Groups in ITIL. A Group (Support Group) should only be to segregate tickets. Assets can be managed at different levels by different people in different ways. Few examples, I might want to give different levels of visibility to people in the same Support Group. A team lead might have access to all the items on the Group while a team member may only need access to fewer assets. This applies to the "Asset" level as well as "attribute" level. Say a team member can only see the serial numbers but not the asset ID or something like that. At the attribute level, it might look too specific but still desirable. 

There is a fundamental design problem here that is handled in a “let’s reinvent the wheel” way. We don’t have to. ITIL has already done that for us, so let’s just stick to what works. Why should my use case to hide assets govern how I design my support system? (Support Groups in this case). Support Groups and Asset Visibility are two different concepts and should be decoupled. 

It pains me so much that basic things like these have to be reported in order for FS to consider it as a feature. I am obviously pointing out only the Inventory Module here but these patterns (or rather lack of it) are spread across all the modules. Problems that ITIL has solved are being tackled very wild-west ways. This sets the product on a very unpredictable trajectory, a roadmap that is anything but ITIL/ITSM. And this scares me. Some day when I run out of patience I might write a long post for all the other modules as well. But for now, this should serve the purpose I hope.

Is it just me? Or others feel the same way? Feel free to call me out if I sound like a snowflake. 

Login or Signup to post a comment