IT Service Management

IT Service Management is largely focused on effectively and efficiently managing the IT Operations processes, people, technology and tools.

Managing wide variety of IT services across multiple domains, platforms and standards requires standard framework, operating procedures, partners and tools.

ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) Framework is used by all successful organization worldwide since 2003. The most robust ITIL framework that lasted whole of last decade was ITIL Version 3.0.

No alt text provided for this image

For the current decade given the shift of entire technology platform and how we manage IT, there was a need for a new framework that can integrate well and work hand in hand with Agile, Lean, DevOps and Digital/Business Transformations.

The new ITIL framework ITIL Version 4.0 has reshaped ITIL framework to meet the current decade IT Service Management needs.

Here is a quick overview of what has changed from ITIL V3.0 to V4.0.

The new framework is more generic and holistic to ensure it can easily fit for all organizations.

No alt text provided for this image

1. The core concept has changed from “service lifecycle” to “service value system”.

2. The processes have been changed to practices. The new framework has 34 ITIL practices.

3. ITIL guiding principles have been revised and reduced to 7 principles.

4. The 4Ps of service design are changed to 4 Dimensions of service management.

Here is a more detailed overview of changes from processes to practices.

No alt text provided for this image

1. ITIL v4.0 shifts from 5 process domains to 3 practices domains.

2. Number practices have been increased to 34 when compared to 26 processes.

3. A lot of General Management practices have been added, also several new practices added in service management as well as technology management domain.

4. Best practices and process domains from ITIL v3.0 are all retained under ITIL v4.0 practices.

5. In ITIL v4.0 focus is increased on value creation instead of just managing the service lifecycle.

6. Integration and links with other frameworks and methodologies is now possible making ITIL v4.0 fit for agile, lean and devops frameworks.

7. ITIL v4.0 is much more aligned with new business strategies and new technology platforms and frameworks.

Overall ITIL v4.0 is best suited and fit for managing IT services and operations. Deploying the ITIL v4.0 framework is relatively straight forward for organizations already using ITIL v3.0 framework. IT service management in many organization is managed through IT strategic operations partners. All we need is the right operations partner and tools.

There are many IT Service Management tools in the market. Large organizations mostly use ServiceNow while small & medium size organizations use online web based pay per use (SaaS) tools.

The way we serve our internal and external customers will change entirely using automation, machine learning algorithms and artificial intelligence.

Automation has taken over the helpdesk and support part to a large extent through artificial intelligence, chatbots, robotics process automations as well as data analytics platforms. Automation and self service support models will continue to become more stronger in coming years but that will not entirely remove the need for IT service management as a whole.

IT service management is an important core of IT services and is here to stay for this decade and beyond.

The Future of Applications

IT is increasingly seen as an essential business enabler as well as value creator + competitive advantage creator. In doing so one of the most important service blocks of IT is applications life cycle management. Within application life cycle management the IT divisions generally use various frameworks and technology platforms to achieve the desired results. The well known ones are,

  1. Rational Unified Process (RUP) for requirements management
  2. PRINCE2 / PM BOK for project management
  3. ITIL for service management
  4. Waterfall method for application SDLC
  5. Agile development for agile way of applications management
  6. SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) for modular/component development and making them available as loosely coupled to be used as service

In the area of technology platform there is a vast list. Some of the heavily used ones are,

  1. Microsoft .Net
  2. Android
  3. Apple iOS
  4. Java/J2EE
  5. MS SQL/MY SQL
  6. Oracle
  7. Many more…

On the other side we have seen the increase is standard out of box applications that we use day in and day out to get our daily activities done. A few examples of the same are,

  1. Microsoft Office Suite
  2. SAP (with needed customizations)
  3. Microsoft Sharepoint
  4. CA Clarity Tool
  5. HP Open View Service Desk Tool
  6. Many more…

The latest trend shows a start in applications turning more and more out of the box for day 2 day activities and collaboration needs. More and more business starting with individuals, small & medium enterprises are going towards using standard out of the box applications to keep their appls maintenance and development costs under control. The MNCs (Multi Nationals) have started moving towards the same for the so called Utility applications.

The advantages seen in using standard out of the box applications are,

  1. No internal development and maintenance team required
  2. The standard functionality ensures easy upgrades and updates
  3. Market standards are adhered to much easily
  4. License costs benefits due to volume
  5. Easier user training with standard vendor provided training materials
  6. Easier acquisition on boarding to One company standard appls

The disadvantages to be handled are,

  1. The standard appls vendor’s existence in market. If the vendor is small can be easily take over/go bankrupt
  2. No control over how fast the issues & changes reported will be resolved and in which release
  3. Very tight control on changes/customizations, all has to be within the boundary of what the standard appls environment allows
  4. License costs year over year can increase/ License model can change for major releases
  5. Data migration from other systems to standard systems could be very time consuming, complex and costly

The applications future continues to evolve and we already see many businesses moving in the standard out of the box applications for their day to day activities and collaboration needs. It is slowly moving towards adaptation of “Software as a Service”, pay for use model.