Many IT managers want to implement the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL). These managers need to understand a couple of very important factors.
– Having dedicated, trained and committed process owners is probably the most important factor.
A successful Incident Management process requires an individual who can devote sufficient time and effort to making sure that it is successful and that all necessary steps are taken. Included in the mistakes made by many organistaions are:-
– A non-existent process owner, so there is nobody dedicated to drive a particular process.
The process owner has other tasks which are deemed more important than ITIL.
– Having multiple owners for a particular process is a classic mistake. The idea of ITIL is to have a single consistent process throughout the organization and having two head cooks in this "process kitchen" is sure to mess up the cake. If there are multiple process owners, how can the responsibility be determined? If you look at companies which have successfully implemented ITIL, you will discover that they have only one process owner throughout the company. This ensures that the process is consistent everywhere within the company. and consolidates co-operation between departments and divisions.
Providing dedicated resources to teh process owners can be an issue for many companies. Often, a process owner can have many tasks, with the process being only one of many things he must do for the company. As long as that other role is not of a reactive firefighting nature. The same person can also be made responsible for more than one process. It would be beneficial if these processes are be of similar focus. The Change, Configuration and Release roles can be shared by one person in small companies for example. In a large corporate company, each of these roles should be fulfilled by dedicated people. Companies who does not fill these roles individually are probably not serious enough about ITIL and are most probably lacking the management commitment.
Which brings us to the second, but probably the most important critical success factor, namely management commitment?
Make sure you have full management commitment, or you may discover ITIL might just become another failed IT project.
Just becuase a manager has stated he is commmitted to ITL, does not necessarily make it so. The manager must walk and talk ITIL and continuously show his commitment. In practical terms this means empowering staff through professional training, tools, demanding the right reports and taking action. etc. Managing by means of ITIL and appointing the right people in the right roles is also crucial.
A good guideline for top management to follow is Kotter's 8 steps to organizational change.
Management commitment is probably the most important success factor for ITIL, but probably also the most difficult to achieve. This is the reason why a lot of ITIL implementations fail.
Many IT managers are under the misconception that ITIL is a cure-all which will magically fix all their problems. They think they can just install ITIL (almost like installing a new technology) and everything will be OK. Many managers need to understand is that ITIL is a a culture change as well as a major organizational change. Customer focus is paramount. It is not enough to focus only on technology..
Because ITIL is usually seen as just an internal IT department endeavor, it may only achieve a low management commitment. It must always be born in mind that ITIL is just a methodology for improving IT, and that it is not the sole or primary focus of the business.
For an ITIL project to be successful, committment from the top is an essential prerequisite, and the ITIL project may fail without it.
An experienced IT practitioner and having just completed an <A HREF="http://www.technical-check-center.com>ITIL Foundation V2-3 Bridging Course</A>, George marks is ideally placed to offer information on <A HREF="http://www.technical-check-center.com>ITIL implementation</A>