5 reasons to love ITIL
- Posted on March 23, 2016
This guest blog post was authored by Roger Bennett, Head of Service Management at CloudTalent, an Avanade company.
As many of you may already know, ITIL is a set of practices for IT service management that focuses on aligning IT services with the needs of the business. Being an American (expatriate, if the IRS are reading this), you might be wondering why I am so gushingly fond of a technology standard that was built for the British Government in the 1980s. Well here are five good reasons why I love ITIL and everyone in IT should, too.
1. ITIL is Fundamental - Every IT organisation needs a code to live by. ITIL gives you just that – a shared reference library of pooled knowledge from many experts who gave their time willingly to create a compendium of best practices for IT. It’s foundational, and open to your interpretation.
2. ITIL is Good for Business - If you are responsible for IT at a major organisation and you ignore IT service management in general, or the principles in ITIL – you do so at your peril. IT in our digital world is simply too complex to manage (whatever vendors may tell you). Without a comprehensive framework for implementing, executing and governing IT operations. Fewer mishaps, faster recoveries, greater repeatability, and closer strategic alignment – the benefits of ITIL form a long list. What’s good for your business is often good for you.
3. ITIL Uncovers Hidden Issues - Some people say that ITIL “is just common sense” and “they would have done all that anyway”. Well, I challenge anyone to compare their own practices with ITIL and see what they are missing. They will almost certainly be missing something and if not, I take my hat off to them, as they must be pretty damn cool.
4. ITIL is Adaptable - There are many misconceptions about ITIL. Some people say it is “too prescriptive,” “it’s just an excuse to sell software” or “it’s just for data centres and helpdesks.” None of which are true. I will leave exploding many of the myths of ITIL for some future date, but for now, be assured that:
- It’s up to you to interpret and implement processes and systems that are right for your business, so it’s OK if you don’t adopt all its recommendations.
- It can make sense to buy software tools, but only when they are aligned with your processes and made fit for purpose for the people who are going to use them.
- ITIL provides guidance around the entire lifecycle of IT services from business needs to design, build, run and restore, so expand your horizons regarding the benefits it brings.
5. ITIL is the Best Option Out There - ITIL was started over 25 years ago in the public sector and there’s been nothing better since. It is the best service management option available, and it is recognised by chapters of the IT Service Management Foundation across the world.
Whatever industry you’re in, IT and service management go hand in hand. And the same goes for ITIL and service management. I don’t expect you to have fallen in love with ITIL just from reading this blog post but hopefully it’s made you think about how ITIL could transform your IT practices.
Roger Bennett joined CloudTalent in 2014 and is currently Head of Service Management Practice. As a management consultant, Roger specialises in ITSM transformation because he loves the logic of it, and it's an area where businesses often need help.