Monday, May 19, 2008
7 Enablers & Constraints Of ITSM
What Makes You Stronger Can Limit Your Potential When Its Missing!
2008 has been a year of reflection for me as I mark 10 years of ITIL adventure with Pink Elephant. In that time I have had the opportunity to work with many organizations as they began and progressed on their IT Service Management journeys.
I would like to say that every IT group I have worked with has had unquestionable success and is reaping all those benefits you read about in the ITIL travel brochures; however, that would not be a true statement!
The reality is that despite best intentions, many organizations stumble or fail in their initial attempts at implementing ITSM practices. The anecdotal reasons given by these organizations vary, but they are related in the sense that they each represent a failure in a key enabler required to be present at some level to achieve their transformation objectives.
When I consider the conversations I’ve had combined with the battle stories of many ITIL champions and sponsors, 7 themes emerge as a consistent pattern. These 7 themes represent 7 critical enablers that provide the energy and life blood ITIL projects require to kick off and stay alive long enough to make a difference at an enterprise IT level. This is not to say that targeted benefits cannot be realized without all 7 being in place in sufficient quality and quantity but I do believe that they are required to effect “lasting change” across the political boundaries of technology silos that represent reality for most IT groups.
ITSM projects have 7 key enablers that provide the energy and resources to initiate, sustain and realize the promised benefits. Unfortunately for many of the organizations these same 7 enablers when non existent at least at a basic level can quickly turn into limiting constraints and terminal blockages that paralyze; then kill their ITIL programs. Understanding, identifying and eliminating these terminal blockages is a critical success factor for any successful ITSM transformation program.
The following list represents these 7 Critical Enablers:
- Leadership: Executive and senior level support and sponsorship
- Resources: Access to necessary project and ongoing process resources (time, people, funding)
- Knowledge: Your level of information, knowledge and skill related to ITSM
- Integrated Tools: Availability of integrated ITSM tools to support process workflow and automation
- Ability to Deploy: The organizational capability to deploy new policies, processes and tools across silos
- Ability to Effect Behavioral Change: Changing organizational behavior/culture and ensuring compliance to new practices over the long term
- ITSM Program Momentum: Maintaining momentum, priority and funding for the ITSM programs
Consider the analogy of a heart with 7 key valves that pumps the life blood through a healthy ITIL Program. For full health, each enabler needs to be in place to run the marathon and cross the finish line. If one or more of these valves are blocked or partially constrained the reality of bypass surgery may be required to keep the program alive.
Over the remainder of 2008 Pink will be conducting and publishing research around these 7 enablers / constraints.
We want to hear from you on which of these 7 enablers / constraints represent your biggest challenges.
Starting with a survey being distributed at our upcoming Pink Perspectives, and followed by papers and conference presentations, look for more information on this important topic.
Troy’s Thought’s What Are Yours?
”Of course we all have our limits, but how can you possibly find your boundaries unless you explore as far and as wide as you possibly can? I would rather fail in an attempt at something new and uncharted than safely succeed in a repeat of something I have done.”—A. E. Hotchner