As always, this article has not been copied and pasted from some book, nor am I regurgitating something parrot fashion from some editorial, this is straight from the heart aimed at getting things done!
If we are to start walking-the-talk rather than just talking-the-walk then it is important to recognise that the most important ingredient when implementing ITIL, or any set of best practice principles, is culture. Using the knowledge gleaned from a training course enables us to reference various practices, methodologies, principles, and techniques however, this alone is not enough.
Too many organisations think that if they send their staff on a training course to become certified then job done. So, how many such organisations have since evidenced the expected benefits? I suspect very few and probably none without the right culture being in place.
So, if we are serious about getting things done and benefiting from such knowledge then the first step must be to introduce the right culture. Culture is often unspoken and unwritten but at the core of making a difference. Culture kicks-in as soon as we onboard, whether employees or customers.
Posters on walls and policies do not ensure the right culture, these just demonstrate intention. I have seen such posters and policies which present such a wonderful organisation however, once onboarded it becomes evident right from the start that this organisation is far from wonderful. This organisation claims to care about the customer, this organisation claims that they exist to make the customer’s life easier but this organisation has zero ‘bed side manners’, this organisation doesn’t even understand what impacts the customer, so how on earth are they going to make the customer’s life easier?
Talking’ is not good enough, we want on the floor action. In the context of this topic we are not interested in ‘titles and managers’ we are more interested in ‘people and servant leaders’. We want cross-functional thinking, we want collaborative working, we want to succeed together or fail together.
So, what can we do when looking to implement ITIL?
The first step is to create your own in-house IT service management (ITSM) framework. ITIL is a public framework composed from the best in class from around the world, it exists to be adopted however, we must adapt this to the relevancy and context of our organisation.
We must also ensure learning (certification and non-certification) is available 24x7 and accessible on-demand. Today, we are not prepared to hang around waiting. If approved, who wants to wait 3-months until that next course session becomes available? We have technologies today where such resources can be made available inexpensively, on-demand. Such as online virtual classrooms and eLearning platforms.
We need to introduce a more formal service management office (SMO) like a parliament populated with servant leaders (not managers), who have the enthusiasm, initiative, and desire to drive the practices, principles and methodologies which they represent organisation-wide.
I could compose pages and pages about this topic alone including a plethora of clear examples but that is not practical, so let me close on one point which for me, offers just one of multiple examples when we refer to culture.
We purchase an expensive call-logging ticketing tool with a view of providing essential management information. I suppose this is like engaging with a training course. To find after deployment and release that the only information we benefit from this tool is that that the tickets state “customer happy”, “all fixed”, “sorted”! We do not need such an expensive tool to provide this level of information, this can be produced on a basic spread sheet. We also have a poster on a wall with a supporting policy highlighting how we use and manage the information captured, there is the intention, but clearly, we are not following it! In other words, the culture does not echo the systems, or policies which we promote.
I will be soon publishing in eLearning (MP4 video) format to complement our Axelos®/PeopleCert® ITIL certification courses, focusing on implementing ITIL. If you are interested, then visit XXX where you can register your interest and we will in turn let you know as soon as this is released.