• “We Have Been Our Own Worst Enemy”

    Written By Graham Furnis

    I want to take a moment with this article to write about a recent email circulating our office. It was sent from one of our vendors in response to a series of service interruptions affecting all of their customers.

    This email I refer to started off discussing commitments to customer service through upgrade investments in new technology. As it progressed, they apologized for a few problems along the way. It went further to admit that some update performance issues weren’t from the infrastructure, but from their own internal processes. Specifically, some changes had unintentionally impacted services and that processes have since been updated to ensure non-repeat of these situations.

    And the next line is so good that I have to let it stand by itself…

    “In some cases we have been our own worst enemy”

    Shortly after this issue, I attended an itSMF (IT Service Management Forum) presentation delivered by Robert Stroud of CA Technologies. He opened with some interesting numbers that speaks perfectly in line with this issue. Only 20% of service outages are caused by technical errors. Only 20% of outages are caused by application errors. That leaves 60% of outages caused by operator error in some way. In other words, internal activities caused an unintentional negative impact due to a lack of process and procedures.

    The ITSM discipline and the ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) framework have existed for some time in answer to these issues. Process, procedures, and controls are needed to effectively manage the delivery of IT business services. Without these things, an organization will quickly find themselves stating “we have been our own worst enemy!”

    Further to this issue, I have found many times that initially ITSM and ITIL are often viewed by management as synonymous with the Service Desk and Incident Management. Incident Management is too late as customers have already been impacted!! There’s often little vision or knowledge of the business case for managing Changes, Releases, Configuration, Service Agreements, and the Service Catalog to name a few areas within the ITIL framework.

    If you find that your organization has “been its own worst enemy”, then perhaps it’s time for an Executive ITSM Overview and adoption … before your competition beats you to it and takes your customers!

    Graham Furnis is fully immersed and passionate in providing ITSM solutions. He is a business-driven IT professional with 20+ years of technology and management experience. He is certified as an ITIL Manager and Expert as well as an accredited instructor. 

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