Mastering ITIL Realities

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14 Tips for a Successful ITIL Implementation

Tips on completing a successful IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) initiative.

If there is actually anything in the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) specification that is news to you, chances are that you probably shouldn't be in charge of running your company's IT systems.

What is relevant about ITIL is that many IT organizations are now being benchmarked against the specification. Most of what is actually in ITIL is fairly obvious. What can be a bit challenging is developing a structured IT workflow process that is not only documented, but can also stand up to an audit.

A structured workflow process, of course, serves as the foundation for delivering IT as a service. This essentially means proactively managing your IT systems, versus waiting for something to break and then trying to fix it. Naturally, things will break, so ITIL calls for the creation of a methodology to deal with those issues. IT doesn't say exactly what process you should have, just that you should have an actual process.

None of this is lost on vendors that are lined up to sell IT organizations tools that we now refer to as IT services management (ITSM) offerings. What these tools essentially provide is an ITIL-compliant set of processes built into a suite of systems management tools.

The latest one of these offerings is from FrontRange Solutions, which this week rolled out SaaSIT. FrontRange CEO Michael McCloskey says he expects that the future of ITSM will be hybrid with companies deploying some tools on premise, while relying on other services in the cloud. What will distinguish one vendor from another in this category, says McCloskey, is how tightly coupled the various modules of their solutions are. That's why with this release of SaaSIT, FrontRange wrote every module from the ground up to be tightly integrated. By contrast, rivals have cobbled together offerings based on different source code that sport different user interfaces, all of which conspire to make the people using that software less efficient.


In terms of ITIL, about the best thing you can do for your IT organization is to get new tools that greatly simplify complying with the ITIL specification. You can, of course, achieve compliance without new tools. But it will be a lot harder to achieve that way. And chances are you and your staff have much bigger issues to deal with than trying to document exactly how it is you do your job on a daily basis when there are sets of tools that will automate that for you.


Naturally, there are any number of ITSM tools that will help you achieve ITIL compliance, so the real issue then becomes finding the one that best simplifies your life so you and the rest of the staff have a decent shot at getting home for dinner on time.