The following is an excerpt from a longer article, entitled ‘Does the ITIL® Framework Need a Facelift?’ by Malcolm Fry. Malcolm believes the framework is an excellent tool, and his comments are not meant to be a criticism but an encouragement to improve.
New services management
New services management has been a bone of contention between developers and IT service management (ITSM), but with the business world demanding more and more new services, the pendulum is swinging towards ITSM. That is, properly tested and quality controlled acceptance of new services. You could argue that the ITIL® framework is one, great big management of new services, and you would be correct. The trouble is, it is too big. One of its biggest weaknesses is the lack of questions that need to be answered before a new service can go live. A new service portfolio, with these questions and their answers, would enhance the ITIL framework.
One of the reasons for home working and the amazing adoption of tablets has been the emergence of cloud computing. The ITIL framework and the cloud are closely related, and because ITIL processes have a good business basis (e.g. change management is universal), it should be easy to update the ITIL approach to help ITSM professionals better manage cloud services.
Configuring the unknown
Configuration management is one of the mainstays of the ITIL framework and one of its key components. The problem is, if you are using cloud computing services, you are configuring the unknown as many of the technologies to supply modern services come from the cloud and are hidden from ITSM. So, the question is: how do you configure the unknown? Some guidance is required for overall configuration management and specifically, how to configure the unknown.
Given the increasing levels of pressure and tighter deadlines, sometimes it is a miracle that IT management maintains any respectable levels of quality management. The ITIL framework does refer briefly to quality but without any structure or commitment. It appears in the Continual Service Improvement volume but only very briefly. The framework needs to create a quality approach that envelopes the service provided by ITSM. The Plan, Do, Check and Act model is getting a little tired or is being ignored.
The ITIL framework is published in a series of volumes. Why is there so little reference to infrastructure in the volumes? The infrastructure refers to everything you need to provide a service to a customer. You cannot provide services if your infrastructure is poor. Nowadays, the emphasis is on services rather than infrastructure. Either the ITIL framework needs to rediscover its roots or rename itself Information Technology Services Library.
At the moment, the ITIL framework is a paper-based approach rather than an online service. Yes, there are electronic versions of the volumes but not a technology based service. Many of the concerns I have expressed here could be eliminated by an online service. For example, updates could be performed regularly with subscribers getting notifications of these updates, thus keeping the framework fresh and up-to-date. When emerging services and technologies appear, the publications can be updated accordingly. It’s time to step back and take the ITIL framework from a paper-based system to a fully electronic subscription based service.
You can read more of Malcolm’s article here. How do you think the ITIL framework can improve?
ITIL® is a Registered Trade Mark of AXELOS Limited. All other trademarks, trade names, service marks and logos referenced herein are the property of their respective owners.