ITIL is a broad set of guidelines covering best practice for IT services management as well as an accompanying certification and training organization. The accompanying image shows their focus on continuing process improvement throughout the lifecycle of a service.
The service desk of ITIL covers incidents and requests. Basically, it’s a help desk. The key feature of the service desk is the consistency of streamlined communication via single point of contact, entrance, and exit.
Evergreen is an example of a consulting company that boasts “a reputation for combining highly skilled ITIL expertise with ‘real-world’ experience in process improvement transformation.” Their ITIL focusing consulting page prominently displays figures pertaining to the potential savings and efficiencies gained with their assistance. While this is eye catching, I think that my favorite portion of their pitch is that this page has an article that focuses on Return on Investment and has a link that promises to help you “Build your case!” It addresses the fact that if you are the IT person looking at this, you likely already see potential value but that you are not the person with the control over the purse strings.
As I work in the insurance industry, I reviewed an example of a client success in an undisclosed insurance company. The insurance industry is not one that is on the cusp of technological innovation. Yet, the case illustrated that it is being pushed into the new age via customer expectations, regulatory requirements and cost efficiency needs. Upon initiating an assessment of the company’s existing IT services, the findings revealed that service level management was a primary concern. End users needed one place to go to deal with all of their questions, concerns, or problems. The recommendation was a Service Catalog that allowed the end user to review and request IT services in an organized fashion that made sense to the end user. The implementation included clear definitions of services, establishment of operational and service level agreements, procedures and process recommendations on completion of services, change information and dependencies and much more. As a result of adopting the new processes, the insurance company is said to now be aware of their various clients needs and have the ability to meet them in a reliable repeatable way.
Naturally, software is being created to help users comply to the guidelines created by ITIL. The software is created by outside companies and then submitted to ITIL for varying levels of certification. For example, the company Intasoft Limited created change management software called IntaChange Enterprise Software Version 3.0 that has a Bronze level certification from ITIL. There are three levels of certification starting with the Bronze, then Silver and finally the highest level of Gold. IntaChange Enterprise Software Version 3.0 is a web based change management system that is said to enhance workflow while recording a full history of changes and maintaining cross references. Its MS Office integration additionally allows it to facilitate and track team input and in general improve communication of the changes overall.