The Information Technology Infrastructure Library or ITIL is at the core of IT Services Management. With ITIL, you can deliver IT support services in the most efficient way possible. Unless you're new to IT management, you must be knowing that there are several versions of ITIL, with the latest being ITIL version 4. In this article, learn what ITIL 4 is and how to develop a standard service model with its guiding principles.
What's New in ITIL 4?
In brief, there are the changes made in ITIL V4 that you should know:
- The processes in ITIL V3 and past versions are now ITIL 4 practices.
- The ITIL service lifecycle was succeeded by ITIL service value system (SVS) in V4.
- V4 focuses more on co-creation of value and collaboration.
- The nine guiding principles of ITIL Practitioner have now been reduced to seven.
- There are more practices than there are processes.
- The CSI model has been changed.
- Governance is prioritized in ITIL with a full chapter (4.4) dedicated to it.
- There's a new "optimize and automate" guiding principle which focuses on automation.
Adopting ITIL 4 Using PRINCE2 :
As a practitioner, you can adopt ITIL 4 with the help of PRINCE2 framework. This section will guide you through the process.
To get started, you need to think of ITIL 4 adoption as a project. Since PRINCE2 framework breaks down projects into manageable tasks and stages, it will make the process easier.
Here's how to adopt ITIL4 using PRINCE2 framework.
Define the Objective :
Also, it's better to define the adoption objective. Why are you adopting ITIL 4? Does it have to do with increasing customer satisfaction or become a more efficient organization or both? This will help you select and prioritize the practices and elements from ITIL 4.
Directing an ITIL 4 Adoption:
The decision to adopt ITIL 4 and the planning that goes into it should include all the C-level executives. This will help ensure the project stays viable and relevant for long term. In case you're hiring a consultancy, then include a senior executive from the consultancy into your team.
Irrespective of whether you're working with a consultancy or it's an internal project, you need to name project managers and directors. They will direct the adoption of ITIL 4 and will be held responsible for it.
Initiating the Adoption Project :
We've already mentioned that you should think of the adoption as a project. But ITIL experts will go even further saying that you should see it as a product. That's how important it is.
So start with an initial assessment and gap analysis. It will help you gauge your current situation. You may use the value steam mapping to uncover pain points and opportunities for making improvements.
Based on the assessment, the team should draw up a Continual Improvement Register (CIR). Then define the stages based on the CIR and start adoption process gradually.
Controlling the Stages :
To deliver the desired results, the product manager should take charge and control each stage of ITIL 4 adoption process. The team should ensure the agreed-upon products that meet the quality standards are delivered on time, within the budget.
To control the process, it's recommended to define work packages and set tolerances. Work packages are small bits of information that are repetitive.
Managing Product Delivery :
One of the guiding principles of ITIL 4 is "progress iteratively with constant feedback". So after you're done with a particular stage, prohibit yourself from jumping onto the next. You need to act iteratively and gather feedback from other teams.
You may even run pilot tests and check if you met the results and the set goals. Uncover the challenges, bottlenecks, and impedances before moving to the next stage.
Managing Service Boundary :
Throughout the adoption, you should ensure that the project doesn't get out of hand. Therefore, always maintain a project initiation document (PID) and update it as and when necessary. Communicate the changes to the project board. They need to be assured that the project is viable.
Continuous Improvement with PRINCE2 :
The ITIL 4 adoption process has no end. The PRINCE 2 framework encourages you to make adjustments and improvement wherever necessary. So you must improve continually and always keep improving.
Review the performance, assess the value that has already been realized, make a future forecast, and plan for the unrealized value.
How to develop a Standard Service Model Using the ITIL 4 Guiding Principles?
A service model is important to balance return on investment (ROI) and value on investment (VOI). The model will deliver a set of outputs for your customers. For creating such a model, you can make use of the continual improvement model (previously known as continual service improvement).
The seven guiding principles of ITIL 4 to develop a standard service model are as follows:
1.Focus on Value :
Value is where it all begins. You need to understand what will make your customers life better. The service model should always focus on delivering the outcomes that benefit the end-user.
2.Start where you are :
You're not required to start from scratch. The service provider would have a set of processes and procedures that are well-established. Furthermore, you might have already made some progress. So, evaluate where you are and start from there.
3.Progress with a feedback loop :
The service model you develop will undoubtedly be complex. To get through the process, you must stay agile. And staying agile demands a feedback loop. You should seek constant feedback from all stakeholders and make regular iterations.
Collaboration will enable you to make the adoption relevant to everyone within the company. It will also promote visibility.
5.Work holistically :
The service model applies to everyone across the organization. So, holistic work is a must. You should consider end-to-end requirements before designing the model.
6.Keep it simple :
Simplicity is where the magic lies. Divide the overly complex model into bite-sized chunks and manage each chunk properly. This way, you'll ensure simplicity.
7.Optimize and automate :
After the creation comes optimization. Optimize your service model for best results. The final task would be to automate everything. While optimizing and automating, your focus should be on value all the time.