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ITIL :: View topic - Is ITIL only for production systems?
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Is ITIL only for production systems?
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Guerino1
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Raroa,

raroa wrote:
T...hat activity of reviewing and improving process is hard work...


I was with you until this statement. Unfortunately, I disagree. Improving process is very easy work. Being dedicated to the constant improvement of process is the issue. The reality is that most enterprises don't consider "Process Management" (another critical discipline missed by ITIL) as something that is core to their business and, therefore, aren't dedicated to managing them, at all, let alone for constant improvement. If they did, they'd have dedicated resources that constantly evaluated the validity, effectiveness, costs, etc. that pertain to their processes and constantly roll out new Process "Releases" (i.e. versioned and new releases of a process), just like Product Management teams roll out new Product "Releases" (i.e. versioned and new releases of a product), on a regular basis.

Anyhow, again, this is my opinion and doesn't necessarily make it right.

Best Regards,

Frank
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raroa
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think ITIL very much DOES provide Process Management. it is called SLM, or more broadly Service Delivery, and the whole focus is on continuous process improvement and the Deming Cycle. The owner is the Service Delivery Manager. how much more process management do you want?

P.S. My favourite quote from Dilbert: "You made that up". "That doesn't make it wrong".
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Guerino1
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Raroa,

If it's process management, why not call it "Process Management"?

Traditionally, Service Management is the process of managing your Services. So, why not call the process of managing your processes "Process Management" and the process of managing all your services "Service Management"? Why confuse things for everyone by making up defintions for certain things that are completely inconsistent with the way you define other similar things? Would you call a dog a cat?

I believe this "inconsistency" is one of the key places where ITIL and many other frameworks and best practices fail. "People" take things that are simple and overcomplicate them. I love the "Keep It Stupid Simple" (KISS) philosophy. ITIL claims to be all about consistency, yet, it is extremely inconsistent, causing all types of implementation confusion for those that aren't experienced with it.

Best Regards,

Frank
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raroa
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a lot more consistent than what we had before, which was nothing much, and hopefully less consistent than what comes after, which is mosty likely ISO20000.

There are 100 ways to label anything. Just because it doesn't use your label doesn't mean it isn't there. I think service management and service delivery are excellent terms because the nub of ITIL, the thing that made it so valuable in the first place, is the focus on what is delivered to the customer: Service. The processes are just the means to the end. I'd rather make the service delivered the über-framework than the processes that deliver it.
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raroa
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

P.S. I think if we have a disconnect here it is because you are ahead of your time with the concept of Product Management. Most of the world is struggling to digest ITIL, and ISO20000 represents a further broadening of scope that they can only aspire to. Product Management is yet another step beyond. the early adopters will hear you (and buy your product) but the crowd is a decade away yet.
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Guerino1
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Raroa,

Actually, it might surprise you that "Product Management", as a concept, is generations old. It was formalized many decades ago, with the formalities of assembly line based automation but put in print by authors like "Moore".

Product Management is old, boring, and not cool and cutting edge enough for IT. So what does the IT community do to spice up life? We constantly reinvent wheels.

Look at all the SW development frameworks:

- Procedural Development Paradigms
- Waterfall methodologies
- Object-Oriented Analysis & Design
- Spiral Model
- Concurrent Development Model
- RUP
- SDLC
- PLC
- Extreme Programming
- MSF
- RAD
- Etc. Etc. Etc... (The list is huge!)

What do all of these models have in common? They're all different version of accomplishing the same exact thing, with no real competitive advantage that would significantly impact your revenue streams. Having a highly repeatable development process that you're constantly improving is important. Which one you have really is not that important.

ITIL is the reinventing of another wheel (actually a very incomplete implementation of a very old and established wheel), which presents the production support and operations portion of "Product Management". IT, as an industry, just doesn't like old, boring, and stable. I believe (and, yes, this is my opinion) that because technology is constantly changing and growing, by default introducing the excitement of change to the world, IT "likes" the drama of change and, as a result, is always looking for the next great and catchy fad. Having lived through so many fads that didn't really change the world that much, I can say that I believe ITIL is today's big fad. There will eventually be another one that everyone will flock to. Good IT people know how to stick to the fundamentals. It's like any sports team. You must stick to the fundamentals to play well, before you can get fancy with big dramatic plays. Never making mistakes on the fundamentals are what make great players and, ultimately, great teams. The IT fundamentals are boring and have been the fundamentals for many decades and there is no excitement that comes with them. But, you'll build a better team if you worry about the fundamentals and not ITIL.

I hope this helps.

Best Regards,

Frank
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raroa
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes it is fascinating the way the service industries (including IT) are learning from manufacturing.

Although IT is still prone to fads, i personally believe the introduction of service management is not one. I go along with the IT Skeptic that SM isn't a fad though ITIL still might be. These waves of IP from manufacturing represent IT's gradual maturity.

So i realise product management has been round manufacturing for a while (as had many of the concepts of service management). What I meant is that it is decades ahead of my parochial little IT world Smile [Wow there's life outside IT?]
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peppermint
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The original question is a very good as many before me commented on it, but let me just throw in my 2 cents as well: I am not trained in Prince2, but what I've read up on it so far, there are elements in it, like Configuration Management which link up quite well with ITIL.
pep
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valbrunm
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 12:51 am    Post subject: Is ITIL ONLY for production systems? Reply with quote

After having read the discussions so far relating to the original question “Is ITIL ONLY for production systems?”, I have inferred, in general, the following:

In it’s simplest form of change and release management, ITIL can be used in the development life cycle of an application. However, it is believed that there already exists more robust tools available to developers (like “SDLC” and "Product/Process Management" and more complicated systems like ISO2000). With that said (and comments having been made by most parties agreeing that ITIL is not the end all to do all), should ITIL be used for anything but production systems?
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toutencarton
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Order Implementation process should come under Change Management.
I have decided to consider Change Management/Order Implementation as a whole process because many things in service support follow that 1st step.
For instance, it is at order Implementation that the CMDB is first filled.
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matrejekm
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that there are guidance given in ITIL.

You hook up with product development/new projects by Change Management (RfC can come from anywhere - e.g. SLM) - then Change Management is overseeing this project by any project management discipline.

peppermint - Configuration Management in Prince2 is something more general - it links Release Management, Security, Document Management. It is slightly different and you cannot link Prince2 Conf Mgmt to ITIL Conf Mgmt.

regards,
MariuszM
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ManP
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is very clear that ITIL does not apply to applications development, as mentioned in page 166 of Support book.

ITIL is meant for only operational environment, anyone trying to apply ITIL to development will see failure.

Any dis-agrees? Glad to hear others.

ManP
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Guerino1
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2007 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello ManP,

ManP wrote:
It is very clear that ITIL does not apply to applications development, as mentioned in page 166 of Support book.

ITIL is meant for only operational environment, anyone trying to apply ITIL to development will see failure.

Any dis-agrees? Glad to hear others.


This is correct, as a result, implementing ITIL without having a solid Systems Development or Product Lifecycle (SDLC/PLC) in place will yield a lot of grief in your enterprise. I'm not saying don't do it, because having something in place to get yourself under control is better than nothing. But, since ITIL truly focuses on the Production operations aspect of IT, it leaves out everything that leads to production. Anyone that is experienced in managing IT will understand that the majority of the work and information is generated in the previous environments. If you implement ITIL without getting the previous environments under control, you will lose all that information (transparency into managing yourself, knowledge bases, etc.), you will cause conflict with stakeholders at the front end of the "Product Management" discipline, which is not covered by ITIL at all, and you will put processes in tools in place that will act as bottlenecks, blockers, and conflicts with processes and tools that are in place to facilitate product development (especially in software).

It amazes me to see how many people can't answer questions like:

  • What are your processes for handling non-production Incidents, Problems, Risks, Changes, etc.? (in Dev, Engineering, QA, etc.) You'll be amazed to see how many IT people implementing ITIL worry about production and forget about everything leading to production. It's like focusing on the finish line but never worrying about the rest of the track, the starting gate, etc.
  • Since an RFC is a "Request" for change, shouldn't that RFC be generated "BEFORE" you start development, be planned for like all other product changes, be wrapped in a Release, like all other changes the Release will handle, be tested in every environment, be tracked through all environments, and be solid before it ever gets to Production? You'll be amazed to see how many enterprises make the mistake of logging "RFCs" right before changes go into Production, as opposed to logging them and routing them into the Product Management process, where Product Managers schedule the changes in a real SDLC/PLC, like they should be.


The biggest issue we find when we walk into enterprises is that many people blindly implement ITIL, focusing only on their production environments, create a huge and expensive mess as a result, and can't cleanly back out of what they've done. Many enterprises that implement ITIL will actually back themselves into a corner and claim victory so as not to look bad. Very sad.

Anyhow, I hope this helps.

Best Regards,

Frank
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ManP
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Considering ITIL developers never claimed that ITIL will meet non-production environments, it is fair to enough to look at ITIL for only production related processes.

In my view ITIL is still to evolve into a model or a benchmark for ITSM. It has many drawbacks, few being:

1) How many books are important. Is it the two core books, or as others say, is it 7 books or 8 or 10 books. What to consider, what to ignore. No criteria is defined.
2) Foundation certificate is available from two bodies EXIM and ISEB. One covers security, the other doesn't. Exam takers can write either of them online from Prometric, one costs 85 Pounds the other costs 100 Pounds. Why and what for is the difference?
3) Though many big organisations claim to have implemented ITIL, there are few people who strongly recommend it (excluding consultants). It is good to have, but not must to have.
4) A key component for ITIL success - CMDB - is not standardized. There is no recommended CMDB structure. Each CMDB tool vendor has his own "the best" solution. Cost of these tools are too exorbitant. Considering without CMDB ITIL is a failure a company is trapped into buying these solutions at huge investment.
4) The real benefits of ITIL are not definite. After spending lot of money and time, management is not sure whether it was worth spent. I consider no. of incidents reduced, RFCs raised, etc. as not "real" benefits. There should be improved visible and measurable operational efficiencies in providing IT Services.

Still I see many companies going for ITIL. Is this because of the marketing done by consultants and trainers?

I know I have diverted from the subject topic but one need to consider these for having a holistic view.

ManP
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skeptic
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ManP, sounds like you could take over my blog when I go on holidays!! Laughing
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