Discuss about ITIL Service Lifecycle.
This Case study is written in order to explain how ITIL framework can be adopted in an SMB organization and its benefits can be realized. The report explores the case of a company called HBZS which is into rescue services for underwater and underground areas. The company has adopted ITIL framework and has reached level after development of a service strategy and design of its services. The study would give insights into the ITIL processes and would assist the IT manager in taking decisions on the adoption of remaining processes in ITIL framework.
The study is divided into five parts that starts with an understanding of ITIL framework and the benefits it can extent to an organization for improving their service management processes. Further, the existing IT processes that are already adopted by the chosen company would be explored. The aim of this study is to explore, devise and explain the right plan of action for furthering the ITIL process adoption. The recommendations would be made for the organization in order to improve its service levels and gain a higher maturity of IT services through the use of ITIL framework.
After the existing adoption and service maturity level of HBZS would be understood, higher levels of ITIL including service transition, service operations and Continuous Service Improvement concepts as defined in the framework would be explored and the same would be applied to the given case to understand how the company can take decisions and what provisions would be required for the company to adopt as the part of ITIL framework. Each step of the adoption process of IT is defined in a separate section in this report in which the case is deeply explored to identify methods for adoption and ways of using best practices to achieve benefits.
On the basis of the insights that would be obtained in the exploration of concepts, some recommendations would have made for the company for adoption of ITIL process adopting its best practices that would be most appropriate for the current organization.
ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) is a framework containing practical guidance on best practices of IT service management. It provides a framework for governing IT systems and processes with focus on continuous improvement of IT systems. Key benefits that can be achieved upon adoption of the framework include higher level of customer satisfaction, improved service availability, resource management, risk management, cost management and decision making (ITIL – Introducing service operation, 2016).
Ongoing ITSM at HBZS
The core reference model of ITIL contains 5 key processes of development that include service strategy, service design, service transition, service operation, and continual service improvement. In the first stage, service strategy is build by identifying needs for service improvement in the company and the same information is then used for designing and catalog services. After catalogue of services is created, the company goes through a transition stage and then actual operations that are planned are implemented. Finally, a CSI strategy is applied so that the benefits of framework can be continually achieved with lessons learned applied to the IT service management practices even in future.
ITIL has 3 versions including its initial version, version 2 and version 3, each differing in additional perspectives and services that are made part of the framework and additional best practices. With the help of reference material of 5 processes, newer versions have further derived new products such as service life cycle, agile project and service, release control and validation and so on. In this report, the basic structure of ITIL adoption is assumed for analysis and no specific versions are separately covered. This can be done as al versions are build on the same foundation of 5 processes of ITIL adoption (ITIL Maturity Model | ITIL | AXELOS, 2016).
HBZG is a subsidiary of OKD which is a Joint stock company based out of Czech Republic that produces coal and has 100% stake in HBZG which provides Mining rescue services in the region.1 the rescue is provided for workers and materials from both underground and underwater operations.
It also provides ancillary commercial services and non-stop emergency services. with the help of its 26 regular rescuers who work 24 hours and 8 additional workers who make themselves available for rescue work within an hour of receiving requirement. In 2014, company conducted 384 rescues in 15000 hours that included commercial services for underground building safety, fire prevention, working at height rescues, underwater operations and the company also provided rescue training to new rescuers.
For this, the operations needed a support from IT especially for formulation of configuration of staff for every rescue operations. The IT infrastructure was formed out of 180 computers, servers and internet devices. Over time, with increase in number of rescue operations, demand of IT services increased and in house IT services were unable to tackle to load because of conflicts and low level of Business maturity which is why company decided to adopt ITIL for management o it systems and decided to incorporate the same for event and incident management, asset and configuration, and knowledge management (Case, 2009). The 1st phase of adoption was smooth and brought benefits with better understanding and usage of IT systems. A serVICe catalogue was planned for 59 businesses and 10 technology services. It activities were divided according to business needs that made understanding IT systems outputs easy for business users. However, in the 2nd phase, several challenges were faced majorly due to low level of maturity of operations leading to competency disputes and conflicts of requirements between different staff of the organization. The catalogue was built at last and business representatives were dedicated for each of the 10 Services to resolve conflicts between Departments. Abstraction in Activities was eliminated and regular reviews of services allowed company to influence service direction for improvements (Case, 2009).
Challenges Faced during ITIL Adoption
The major challenge faced in ITIL adoption was in conversion of technological perspective to Business perspective in order to establish smooth communication between technology and business. It was difficult for technical IT team to explain how their services translated into business benefits. The terminology that was used by IT team different greatly from the business terms and when it was a need for measurement of the success of the IT service management, the business users could never be satisfied as the metrics presented by IT team were either not understood or were misinterpreted by the business managers. However, the processes were made to align with introduction of business terminologies for measurement of IT services performance in the phase 2 of ITIL adoption. Maturity of services is still a major concern and needs to be improved for which company which needs to revise its processes according to the guidelines of the framework which would help them mature their services. This would include transition of services to the ITIL processes, development of IT service operations as per framework and formalization of a continuous improvement process for future developments of the services.
IT service management ITSM is a process that focuses on use of best ITIL practices such that effective It services can be provided and with continuous service improvement program (CSIP) this effectiveness can be kept improving. The ITSM along with CSIP make it possible to align its service deliverables with business needs which requires transformation of the business-IT paradigm such that business needs can become key drivers of it processes with support from experts. CSI can improve the quality of measurement metrics in line with organization culture. To be able to achieve these benefits, the company would first need to have a clarity on the level pf maturity the business has in terms of ITIL and ITSM such that scope for improvement can be identified.
An ITIL and ITSM maturity assessment of people, processes, organization and information is available for this and the same has been derived from IT service capability maturity model (CMM) that defines a business service on four levels of maturity including initial repeatable, defined, managed and optimized.
Measurement metrics are defined for different areas of it service management including:
Service level management: a mature business service involves management of IT service quantity and quality. An assessment would require an understanding of whether services are delivered as per initial agreements and of they are made affordable for the long term. This also needs establishment and management of interfaces between IT and business as well as user. In case of HBZS, services have been delivered a per agreement and the interfaces with business and people is managed but no specific provisions are observed for management of quality or quantity of service and its affordability. While Service Level Agreements define the requirements of a service from the business perspective, operational level agreements ensure that these business requirements are met with the IT services of the department ( IT Process Maps GbR, 2009).
Availability Management: Availability and reliability of IT services have to be managed and business needs for which IT services are being accessed have to be satisfied. The infrastructure of IT that is established needs to be made as per the Service Level Agreement. Business needs of the organization are being satisfied by the incorporation of ITIL to some extent in the two phases of adoption but the concerns of SLA have not been addressed.
Capacity Management: Accurate forecasts have to be made available about the IT requirements and deliveries for future. Further, the development must make improvements in current knowledge, future knowledge ( IT Process Maps GbR, 2009), ability to make services cost effective, planning and implementation of IT capacities in future. In case of HBZS, current capacity has been managed as well as improvements were seen in the capacity from previous phase but this still leaves the scope for understanding cost impacts and ability to better planning and implementation processes for future.
Financial Management: IT services that are delivered by an organization must satisfy business needs and must make way for continuous improvements. Certain business needs of HBZS has been satisfied but continuous improvement plan is required to be implemented and is under consideration such that the services can be made to reach a higher level of maturity.
Incident Management: The company has implemented systems for management incidences that includes resolution of incidences that can impact business, maintenance of service quality to a level, improvement in business processes that was achieved in 2nd phase of ITIL adoption and user satisfaction which resulted from the deployment of specific service experts or representative who could help resolve conflicts of departmental requirements.
Problem Management: Service quality improvements include understanding and reducing impacts of incidences and problems on business, and reduce the cost of problem impacts on users.
Change Management: Change management process is required to be established in such a way that it makes it repeatable for future use in case of any need for change. Moreover, the changes must be made fast and accurate as well as services must remain protected against any impacts of changes. With time, efficiency and effectiveness of change management must be improved. In case of HBZS, no change management practice has been established yet.
Release Management: This includes implementation or adoption of software and hardware as per business needs. The establishing of release management processes must make way for smooth and accurate implementation of releases in future as well as enable cost savings in future releases. In case of HBZS, the costs parameters are still not clear and release management process is at a very nascent stage with no established release management process.
Configuration Management: IT assets of the organization needs to be controlled and support must be provided against delivery of quality of IT services. This way services have to be improved to make them economic. Moreover, support, integration and interfacing of IT with business and people have to be managed to achieve next level of maturity in IT management which is lacking in the case of HBZS.
With the current maturity level of HBZS, it can be said that there is a clear need for improvement which can be done by adopting more areas of ITIL as per the assessment and that include availability management, change management, capacity management, problem management, and so on.
ITIL framework can be adopted in stage wise manner beginning with development of service strategy that would include identification of the business needs and required IT services that can satisfy those needs for the organization. This involves strategic management, building of a service portfolio for IT department, assessment and provision of financials, and customer relationships requirements to be filled with the provision of IT services. The company has done the analysis in the first stage of ITIL adoption to come up with a service (ITIL – Welcome to the Service Transition introduction toolkit, 2016) strategy in which company identified 10 Technological services that would be delivered and managed through the ITIL framework.
In the second phase of ITIL, the company went through the service design process in which the chosen 10 services were designed with identification of their capabilities and agreements for delivery off the business service needs. In this stage, HBZS build a catelogue of services which helped the organization divide activities in different departments in way to form specific number of service deliverables. The company was particularly benefited by the connection that was established between IT services and the business such that the metrics and measurements of performance of IT processes could be presented in the business language for better understanding of business users.
Further, assigning single service presented in the catalogue was managed by a single business represented which further eliminated confusion and hence, competency disputes that were faced in the first stage of development. The IT manager also asked for support from top management which was further simplifying the complexities of service management and by the end of the phase the company was able to serve 59 business needs with 10 technological services. This eliminated the abstraction in the activities to be performed as well as ITIL now served as a guide for the management while they reviewed the progress of theITIL adoption process. However, even with initial identification of strategy, some operational challenges were faced such as communication between IT and business.
In the second stage of service design, not just the conflicts between departments were resolved but the process also made way for development of terminologies that could simplify explanation of the outcomes of technology service deliveries through the use of understandable metrics for business users. Regular review meetings were planned in which the reviews were conducted for assessment of performance of IT service management throurhg the use of business focused metrics. HBZS has considered moving to the third stage of service transition that would involve development of plans for managing supplies and deliveries of IT service, change management process, asset management, configuration management, release management, validity and testing of service releases, change evaluation and knowledge management. However, challenges were faced as the coal prices dropped affecting the parent company resulting into reduction of capital available for resources but at the same time, demand on the IT department increased.
Before a company took the transition into the next phase of the ITIL adoption, it was essential understand the level of maturity it has achieved and the same can be done by understanding how the company adopted each function and requisites of the IT service management process and these helped company make a decision on what needs to be added while going through service transition process. The maturity level assessment could help management understand how the company's IT systems were performing in each area of IT management such that the scope for development and improvement can be understood. For every level of adoption beginning with strategy making, service design, service transition, operations and continuous service improvement, a certain level of maturity in different areas is required. The same can thus be assessed in case of the company to understand if the company was prepared for the phase of transition and what needed to be done in each area during the transition stage to be able to get to the next stage (Service Measurement & Reporting Across the ITIL Service Lifecycle - www.itsmwatch.com, 2016). These included:
Management Commitment: The level of commitment required in the process of adoption of ITIL increases with the stages. In the service strategy and designing, low level of commitment from the top management could still get a way for the company to move ahead with adoption but the commitment from the management has to be visible enough when moving on to the transition stage as it would require all employees to be performing and adopting ITIL guidelines sincerely which would be difficult to achieve in absence of support from top management. In case of HBZS, the top management was willing to support the ITIL transition process as they have realized its benefit in the earlier phase of adoption when the service catalogue was built for its IT services (ITIL.org - Service Reporting, 2016).
Reponses Strategy: The response to triggers for change or any issue was mostly reactive before the company adopted ITIL but it still has a majority of its work done in response to the triggers. The company has only implemented incident management function in its service management portfolio. However, a proactive approach was required in the transition stage which would need company to add problem management to the portfolio. An issue can arise once but if the same issue is seen in multiple incidences then it denotes the presence of a problem in the wider context which would require problem management function to be included in the ITIL service portfolio. Instead of being active and responding to the incidences, this will make company somewhat pro-active and this would involve recording of probable issues that can arise and decide cause of action in advance to either avoid the problem from happening or mitigating the impacts caused.
Automation: The level of automation required in the transition stage is more than the service design stage, In the design stage, some of the activates can be automated but during the transition stage, most routine activities have to be automated. Thus, before the company can move on to the transition stage, plans have to be made for automating routine activities in IT service management. In the subsequent stages, this level of automation would not suffice and more and more routine services would have to be automated. Processes that can be automated are only the ones requiring a repetitive human efforts and the variation is less such that the same can be coded by a program. However, if the variation of the service process is high, then automation would not serve the purpose and its adoption would rather degrade the services. An example where service process can be automated is event management activity like cleaning up of the disk space. If the disk space available in computers used by employees of HBZS has to be cleaned manually every time, it would take time and affect the productivity of the worker. Such a process is be repeated in the same way several times and thus can be automated by writing a program for detecting available space when it goes below threshold, analyzing disk space, send mail to administrator with option to archive or delete some designated files, command the clean up as per choice and then sending an email confirming the completion of clean up (ENTERPRISE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES , 2008). Automation would have several benefits for HBZS such as increased visibility of service in the system, higher speed, improved quality, regulatory compliance, and superior financial performance. Moreover, automation makes the processes more proactive than active. Incidence management, for instance, can be automated to monitor processes, identify incidences and then react to incidences occurring automatically.
Activities: Till now, most activities performed by the company were done on ad hoc basis with a few resources formalized with the introduction of the catalogue but in the transition phase, activities have to be planned in advance before they are performed. Moreover, different activities are required to be coordinated in some way.
Roles: In the design stage, company recognized various IT specific roles but the same have to be formalized, defined and assigned properly in the transition stage. This includes defining role of each of the service representative and assignment of duties to them accordingly.
Stakeholder Involvement: The stakeholder involves is low in the design stage but in the transition stage, it had to be improved and thus, they were made the part of review processes through reporting of progress of adoption as well as IT service management. The review would require service representatives to prepare performance metrics and measures not only for the internal stakeholders including top management but also external stakeholders like customers. There has to be transparency on how IT services are performing in the organization.
Documentation: In the previous stages, a few documents were prepared by the organization starting with a lengthy document "Rules for using Information and Communication Technologies" in the strategy phase which after cataloguing was reduced to 4 pages which only listed principles of services in bullet points. However, this documentation would not be enough as more documentation would be involved for roles, definition, stakeholder expectations, performance reporting and so on to be able to achieve successful transition in the third stage.
Service operations as per ITIL framework involves certain processes including event management, incident management, problem management, access management, and some functions such as service delivery, technology management, operations management and application management (ITIL.org - Service Reporting, 2016).
The company is considering outsourcing of it Department s services including operations and help desk. It operations include internal services targeted to serving internal employees while help desk would be a one point of contact for external stakeholders or customers. The cost of developing and operations of these two core areas of IT would be much less when outsourced than in the case when capabilities are built in house. However, the level of control of processes, changes, risk, data, and so on would be very low which would create problems when facing risks, incidences, ad hoc or unplanned work. Although the service provider would be experts of the arena but without management control over internal processes, issues can arise in deliveries and process aspects. Especially, in case of core it services targeted to internal stakeholders, a higher level of control is necessary for ITIL to perform at its best. The help desk service has a limited exposure and Mostly deals with incidences rather than on big business problems and thus, if this part is outsourced to experts, it would not cause any issues in management of it services or their deliveries
Core service operations of it service management domain involve fulfillment of user requests from internal users of the organization, resolution of serv8ce failures, fixing of issues and problems and routine operational tasks. In terms of ITIL framework, specific core operations of the company can be identified as follows:
Event management: critical incidences along with service provisions and statuses have to be recorded as belonging to specific category of events and the same can then be monitored. The incidence can be categorized into several types of events such as information, warning, alert or exceptions. This classification can be used to create incident filters such that moat critical issues can be filtered out and resolved on priority. Several management and technological tools can be used to detect events and send the notifications of the same to users such as simple network management protocol that can generate event notifications for problems in configuration items
Incident management: the practice of incidence management involves management of the entire life cycle of all incidences that are identified and the aim remains to restore affected IT service as soon as possible. HBZS has incorporated incidence management as its core IT process which involves receipt of incidence information from users and acting upon the same for fat restoration.
Request fulfillment: Any request received for certain information or Change requirement, the same has to be fulfilled and managed. For HBZS, these requests can be related to construction of a configuration of the rescue team for a specific rescue operation.
Access management: while company runs it process over an IT infrastructure, it is important that only authorized user is able to gain access to information or processes, thus, policies for access rights and identity management have to be established as a part of access management. In case of HBZS, specific information would be provided only o concerned staff member and not to other. Different Department s may be provided with access rights to different IT service feature based on policies.
Problem management: while incidence management concerns with a single issue, problem management would delve deeper to identify similar issues caused by a specific problem that has to be addressed. Further, the incidence reports already available would be analys3d o identify trend such that probable predictions can be made to avoid incidences or reduce their impact on services proactively. Entire problem life cycle management would also be done on this operation.
IT operational control: The services provided as well as the IT infrastructure would required to be Monitored routinely and a control may be established. This control process can somewhat be automated which would allow monitoring of the infrastructure and identification of any possible or potential problems that are likely to occur such that resolutions can be suggested to administrators of HBZS.
Facilities management: facilities include those external elements that support IT infrastructure such as power, cooling, building, access control and environment of the infrastructure. These would have to be managed by company for management of internal services.
Applications management: the life cycle of all application that are the part of IT department would be managed by the company for the operations phase of ITIL adoption. This would include identification of requirements, designing of the service, development of the application, training to people on application, launch of application, its usage and maintenance.
Technical support: technical support can be provider for managing infrastructure of IT. In the case of HBZS, an internet service desk can be established within the office which would respond to all IT related issues faced by employees of the organization such that the resolution can be done instantly.
The core operational process of IT discussed above would not remain very effective in terms of ability to monitor and serve with speed if the same are outsourced to an external IT service provider. For instance, if a need for application is identified, the outsourced partner would not know about it until specific requirements are already worked upon and submitted to them by the internal staff. This would consume time as well efforts. Also, if ITIL is not adopted by the service provider, then there would be required for converting business needs into IT requirements to submit the same to contractor. Moreover, for development of every new service planned, the company would incur additional expenses and thus, would try to avoid new application development but try to customize those already existing.
Another area of IT service operations is service or helpdesk that can actually be outsourced to save on cost, However, it would require management to take decision on what service desk model can be used while outsourcing it to have clarity on how customers would be served so that performance of help desk can be improved with use of coordinated activities.
A service desk can be in the form of a call center where service professionals would receive calls from customers for resolving issues or obtaining information, help desk where customers would have to Visit to resolve their queries or service desk that can provide single level of service such as a self serv8ce kiosk or multiple level support by providing self service, first line support from call center, expert group support or vendor contact for physical online or offline support from the vendor or manufacturer directly.
Service desks can be established locally by Providing help desk near to customer, centrally through a single service center, dispersed with virtual service desk creating illusions of centralization or follow the approach may be used by providing service across globe using multiple channels. As HBZS is a small business unit, with more local customers, local centers can be created used but it would be costly and thus central location may be a choice. However, if the service desk is outsourced to a consultant, a dispersed network may be used but virtual system may be created on the side of the company connected with both customers and third party service provider such that an illusion of central service desk is created for customers while calls and queries are managed by different service personnel across different locations
A service desk can serve as a cost center where company would invest into same and can also be made a profit center by charging customers. HBZS can use the profit model through development of client subscription model for provision of services
A common practice of service desk takes inbound calls from customers but some service desks also provide outbound call services to keep monitoring incidences and stay connected to client which makes client feel being cared for. However, provisions allowing service calls from customers is still needed and thus, HBZS may go for a combination of inbound and outbound service desk servicing customers both ways.
Continual Service improvement is done for improvement of efficiency and effectiveness of IT processes and services continually. It uses principles of quality management by learning from past mistakes, failure and success for devising improvement strategies. The process is also in Line with ISO 20000 (ITIL – Introducing continual service improvement, 2016).
Besides adoption of ITIL process, the company has also planned for adoption of ISO 20000 requirements with the help of the framework and thus, it would be worthwhile to explore how specific requirements of ISO 20000 can be translated into ITIL practices to adhere to adopt the standard. Key requirements of the standard include (ITIL – Introducing continual service improvement, 2016):
- Planning and implementation of new or modified services which can be achieved by building service strategy and making service level agreements
- Service Delivery: Delivery of service as per the standard involves various processes that include service level management and service reporting that can be achieved using ITIL service level management guideline. It also includes service continuity, availability management, budgeting and accounting, capacity management and information security management. Each of these requirements can be fulfilled by separate processes defined in the ITIL framework.
- Relationship Processes: Business relationship management which is one of the requirements of ISO standard can be achieved by service portfolio management, service level management and continual service improvement. Supplier management is another processes which is included in ITIL framework and is one relationship requirement of standard.
- Other requirements of ISO include incident management, problem management, configuration management, change management, and release management. ITIL provides provision of practices for each of these requirements.
Thus, it can be said that with the adoption of further levels of ITIL framework both ITIL and ISO certifications can be achieved to make the IT service management more efficient and effective.
Figure 1: CSI (ITIL – Introducing continual service improvement, 2016)
In business terms, continuous improvement can be defined through identification of vision, how is company doing now, what improvements are required, what can be done to achieve them and how to measure if they are achieved. However, to be able to convert these into IT requirements that can be implemented, the business needs can be converted into specific metrics such as business vision, mission, goals, baseline assessments, targets, service and process improvement, measurements and metrics.
Key processes involved in continual service improvement include service review, process evaluation, definition and monitoring of CSI initiatives.
Service review: HBZS would require to take service check for its IT infrastructure and services regularly with aim to find ways these can b improved in quality and that can be done in economical ways.
Process evaluation: HBZS can regularly look for events when target process metrics are not reached to identify problems proactively and resolve the same. For a regularity in this process, methods like benchmarking, audits, maturity assessments and reviews can be conducted periodically. The evaluation would then be carried out by assignment of these to metrics such as number of reviews co ducted can be one metrics for evaluation of ITIL adoption (Software, 2016).
Definition of CSI initiatives: various IT service initiatives cause development of processes and services and the same would be resulting from reviews and evaluation of services a processes. These initiative can be internal requiring company capabilities or external requiring support from customers. In any case, initiative would have to be identified and appropriate action for implementation would be taken (ITIL V3 one year on, 2008).
Monitoring of CSI initiatives: After CSI initiatives are finalized and started to be implemented, monitoring of the same is required so that they can be improved and in case of any issues making them suffer in quality or completion, corrective actions may be taken
Business IT integration was started by the company but it has to be maintained at all level to be able to remain successful in implementation and use of ITIL framework. Several ways this can be made possible are:
Building trust between IT and Business: IT can establish control over certain processes such as governance, risk management and procurement to sustain purchasing power and support from suppliers can be received on time and as required. However, it must also be willing to give away control to some extent to keep business users satisfied and bring them usage convenience. This way, business users can practice innovation and serve themselves. For instance, in case of HBZS, business users can be provided access to IT system for extraction of information required for routine work but they may not have the control over modification of procurement policies
IT has to work closely with other Department s to build trust and provide easy deliveries, easy access to services on demand from business users from other departmental. In case there are complexities arising in integration, the Same can be communicated to business users. For instance, if a business user demands a custom report on certain data within a day but it is complex and IT could not d3liver the same before a week because of this, the business user should not only be communicated about the delay but also be explained technical reasons behind it. This would build trust between IT and business users.
Transparency: a strategic transparency must be maintained between different departmental such that they all know what other departs are going to achieve strategic goals and how they are working including IT, marketing, operations, HR, etc.
Integration over re-invention: development of new IT solutions every time may not be a feasible option as it would not only be costly and time consuming but its complexities may also require extensive training of business users. however standard solutions with known interfaces a processes can easily be integrated and used by business users with faster learning curve while adoption. For instance, ergonomics design is a proven approach to user friendly interface and thus, may be used directly for development rather than conducting new research on area by asking users. In the same way established cloud models can be integrated as a part of infrastructure with available applications that can be run on virtual systems rather than doing acquisition of new hardware and development of new application from scratch.
Integrating ITIL and Six Sigma: The adoption of ITIL framework affects the four Ps of an organization that include people, processes, product and partners. Thus, a great level of commitment from management is need to be able to successful in the adoption. Moreover, processes once adopted cannot remain efficient for the entire life of the organization unless the organization continues to improve processes which is made possible with the adoption of CSI initiatives defined in the framework. But this process improvement is a very generic guideline and practitioner of quality improvement for service may need a more specific guideline for which several other frameworks can be used such as Six Sigma, which talks about improvement in services performance considering their impact on consumers. ITIL framework guidelines can be applied to six sigmas and the sig sigma principles can thus be used for CSI process of ITIL for further improvement of the process. Sig Sigma can be applied to specific problems faced by customers which can be resolved with specific set of improvement practices. It would then allow measurement of process data related to area of the problem such that an analysis can be performed to identify root causes of defects and solutions can be deployed to maintain these defects to lowest level such that customer experience can be improve continuously (Probst, et al., 2013).
Conclusions and Recommendations
This report was written to explore a case of ITIL adoption by small business organization called HBZS that was providing rescue services for underground and underwater recues. The company has an IT Department that managed information of rescuers and incidences to come up with configuration of rescue teams that were constructed on ad hoc requests. The company was facing major challenges in managing demands from business users on ad hoc basis and was looking to strategize third IT processes to make them in line with business needs so that 7sers could be served better. For this, the IT manager decided to adopt ITIL framework for development and management of their IT services and had completed two phases including service strategy formulation and service design. This gave them Significant business benefits with improved communication between IT and business. A serv8ce catalogue of Business and technology serv8ces was constructed further to organ8ze service management which improved understanding of business users on IT capacity of the firm. The firm now has plans to adopt subsequent stages of ITIL framework including transition, operations and CSI. This report explored this idea of attaining higher level of IT service maturity by using ITIL framework and each of the remaining stage was explored for understanding how they can be made possible for the given case of HBZS and how each of them can benefit the organization.
Based on the the study and discussion on ITIL adoption in SMB, certain recommendations may be made for the IT manager for making the moat out of ITIL adoption process and achieve service efficiency and effectiveness and these include:
ITIL framework provides guidelines and is very flexible. Manager may be tempted to use best practices but at the same time they may have cost implications and risks that are best known only to company and thus best practices may not be followed blindly but a consideration may be made for assessment of risks and modify the approach by skipping certain risky adoption of ITIL framework for best interest of the company
The adoption ca. Be continued using a phased approach and this time for individual processes that are to be matured including incident management, problem management, Change management and configuration management that can be treated as sub project while adopting phase wise.
HBZS has already implemented Incident management but that only takes care of problems after they are already escalated. However, if the company implements problem management over it for managing multiple incidences and making use of the incidence records for taking proactive decisions, it can increase responsiveness to problems and reduce errors. Further, it would enable organization to proactively eliminate causes that can cause problems in advance with learning from past incidences(Aldon, 2008).
Map existing IT processes with desired processes before a plan can be made to move to the next stage of ITIL adoption
If Configuration management is implemented at earlier stages of ITIL deployment, it would have significant benefits for the business processes and thus, organization can take the very next step for implementing the same(Ragsdale, 2004).
Continuous improvement appears at the last stage of adoption but it is not a onetime but a permanent process that has to be kept on as a journey.
Organization must take a collaborative perspective to achieve performance through ITIL adoption with focus kept on the customer service and customer satisfaction(BMC Software, 2014).
It is not necessary that all recommendations or guidelines of ITIL would have to be used in practice but the organization has the flexibility to explore all of them to decide on what best suits their needs and accordingly implement those measures.
ITIL adoption requires services to be matured for which processes and IT systems are required to be scaled up without which the ITIL process elements of further stages could not be implemented successfully and thus, as the ITIL implementation proceeds, the company has to scale its processes and systems simultaneously which will have brought about many changes in between and to management, change management process would have to be established in the transition stage.
Figure 2:ITIL Process Coordination (Serview, 2015)
ITIL activities have to be coordinated to ensure business continuity. As strategy management gives elements for service designing, the outputs of service design process including service level agreements, catalogue management, security management, capacity management, availability management, and supplier management must be used for establishing change management process through building knowledge based on service designing and validating the design ideas to come up with plans for deployment.
Six sigma guideline can be integrated with ITIL for establishing focus on customer satisfaction and achieve the same in CSI of ITIL through the application of Six Sigma to it.
Instead of development of new applications or processes every time, the company can adopt already existing best practice or take an outsourced solution to capture the business need. this would save time and costs for the company.
Transparency needs to be maintained between departments such that they all know what other departments are doing including IT.
Anon, 2007. ITIL refreshed. ITNOW, 49(4), pp.17-17.
Anon, 2008. ITIL V3 one year on. ITNOW, 50(6), pp.26-27.
Anon, 2016. ITIL – Introducing continual service improvement. [online] Ucisa.ac.uk. Available at: <https://www.ucisa.ac.uk/~/media/Files/members/activities/ITIL/continual_service_improv/ITIL_Introducing%20Continual%20Service%20Improv%20pdf.ashx> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Anon, 2016. ITIL – Introducing service operation. [online] Ucisa.ac.uk. Available at: <https://www.ucisa.ac.uk/~/media/Files/members/activities/ITIL/service_operation/ITIL_Introducing%20Service%20Operation%20pdf.ashx> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Anon, 2016. ITIL – Welcome to the Service Transition introduction toolkit. [online] Ucisa.ac.uk. Available at: <https://www.ucisa.ac.uk/~/media/Files/members/activities/ITIL/servicetransition/ITIL_welcome%20to%20service%20transition%20pdf.ashx> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Anon, 2016. ITIL Maturity Model | ITIL | AXELOS. [online] AXELOS. Available at: <https://www.axelos.com/best-practice-solutions/itil/itil-maturity-model> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Anon, 2016. ITIL.org - Service Reporting. [online] Itil.org. Available at: <https://itil.org/en/vomkennen/itil/serviceimprovement/csiprozesse/index.php> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Anon, 2016. Service Measurement & Reporting Across the ITIL Service Lifecycle - www.itsmwatch.com. [online] Itsmwatch.com. Available at: <https://www.itsmwatch.com/itil/article.php/3920681/Service-Measurement--Reporting-Across-the-ITIL-Service-Lifecycle.htm> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
Case, G., 2009. Continual Service Improvement: Bringing It To Life. 1st ed.
Mora, M., Gomez, J., O'Connor, R., Raisinghani, M. and Gelman, O., 2015. An Extensive Review of IT Service Design in Seven International ITSM Processes Frameworks. International Journal of Information Technologies and Systems Approach, 8(1), pp.69-90.
Software, B., 2016. Continual Service Improvement: Best Practices & Processes for ITIL CSI - BMC India. [online] Bmcsoftware.in. Available at: <https://www.bmcsoftware.in/guides/itil-continual-service-improvement.html> [Accessed 11 Jun. 2016].
To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:
My Assignment Help. (2017). ITIL Service Lifecycle For SMBs: A Case Study Essay.. Retrieved from https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/itil-service-lifecycle.
"ITIL Service Lifecycle For SMBs: A Case Study Essay.." My Assignment Help, 2017, https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/itil-service-lifecycle.
My Assignment Help (2017) ITIL Service Lifecycle For SMBs: A Case Study Essay. [Online]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/itil-service-lifecycle
[Accessed 01 March 2024].
My Assignment Help. 'ITIL Service Lifecycle For SMBs: A Case Study Essay.' (My Assignment Help, 2017) <https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/itil-service-lifecycle> accessed 01 March 2024.
My Assignment Help. ITIL Service Lifecycle For SMBs: A Case Study Essay. [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2017 [cited 01 March 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/itil-service-lifecycle.