Since we began our HigherEd webinar series toward the end of last year, we’ve been looking for the most pressing ITSM issues facing the HigherEd community (One-Stops, Building a Successful Service Catalog, etc.). This month, we’re taking on an even bigger challenge: the Educause Top Ten - and what better place to start than with number one, “Hiring and retaining qualified staff, and updating the knowledge and skills of existing technology staff”.
Not surprisingly, some of our best ideas for blog articles come from students in our training classes and from consulting clients. A few short weeks ago when I was teaching an ITIL Foundations class in Fairfax, Virginia, a student shared his professional background with me and asked for a little career advice. Let’s call him George.
If you’ve gotten any sort of ITIL training, you will have quickly realized that there are more than 25 ITIL processes, and the thought of trying to implement them all well (or at all) can instantly discourage any organization from even getting started. Fortunately, it doesn’t need to be that way. Here are our best tips for making progress and finding success with an IT Service Management implementation program.
The demos always look so great. Such a gorgeous, shiny new tool! Vendors are fantastic at this. What they're less good at is giving you the hard truths around what has to be done before you should even think about implementing that gorgeous, shiny new tool. The reality is this: Your tool will never look like their demo database if you don’t get your Service Catalog squared away and have a clear understanding of what a Service is in the first place (this article will help you with that).
For an organizational transformation effort to be successful, there are three components that need to be addressed, namely: people, process, and technology. When we run into trouble or the program does not deliver what we expect, it’s often due to an unbalanced focus in only one or two of the three areas. To find long-term success, we must focus on all three areas. Otherwise, we become out of balance, and our efforts will immediately stall. Here, we will discuss what happens when we lose our focus along with some ways to course correct. (For ideas on how to implement a focus on people, process, and technology, see How to go from zero to ITIL in six months (without breaking a sweat).)
You’re not going to believe this, but there are a lot of people out there who don’t find process improvement sexy. (Who ARE these people?) Technology is sexy, sure. That one’s a given. Training can even be sexy - or at least fun. When it comes to process design, however, no one really gets excited (you may have dozed of just now, come to think of it). Well, wake up, grab some coffee, and stick with me! We’re going to talk about how you can breathe new life into your organization – and it all boils down to putting a little focus on process.
So, you’ve decided to buy Cherwell (awesome!) and begun the work of deciding how you’d like to have it implemented. First of all, congratulations! It’s clear you have excellent taste in ITSM platforms. Now, about that implementation; the good news is, you have a ton of options.
Implementing an enterprise IT system is like buying a treadmill to get in shape. You have this picture of the end goal in mind – how good you’re going to look and feel once you get in shape – then quickly realize that pain, sweat, and a few tears may be involved in actually getting there. Having the discipline to stick to something that, frankly, is boring and not so fun, is difficult. Really difficult. Fast-forward a few months and, without a solid strategy for getting in shape, many of us find we have nothing more to show for our efforts than an expensive clothes rack. This same fate can (and does) easily befall us when we approach an enterprise system without a strategy.
If your organization is looking to implement IT Service Management (ITSM) but doesn’t quite know where to start – fret not. If you’ve gotten started but fear you’ve veered off course a little – also fret not. You’ve all come to the right post! The below information is designed for new ITSM endeavors. It’s best served by tailoring it to your specific organization – but whatever your needs, the following will give you a great start.