“ITIL® is DEAD!!!” “Long live ITIL®!!!”

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There are two trains of thought in those sentiments and with the announcement of VeriSM™, both resonant to service managers. First and foremost, VeriSM is not replacing ITIL. Period. Read that statement again. Frankly, VeriSM isn’t replacing anything. VeriSM is about “changing the view” of service management. Service management must be incorporated organizationally wide, not just as an IT initiative.

The idea that IT is a service provider changes in VeriSM – the organization is the service provider and IT is just one of the many capabilities within the organization used to create its products and services. VeriSM is designed to exploit the management frameworks and the emerging technologies to benefit the organization and consumer. To some service managers, the immediate response is, “We already do that!” To others, the response is “There is no need to go beyond [insert your favorite service management philosophy here] – we’ve invested and we are going to make it work!” In any case, there is a range of responses – I ask you to be open-minded and consider what VeriSM is truly saying.

First and foremost, the key facet of the VeriSM model (it is not a process flow, not a set of procedures) is the management mesh where ALL management practices (ITIL, COBIT, ISO/IEC 20000, CMMI-SVC, DevOps, Agile, Lean, SIAM…) and emerging technologies (AI, containerization, IoT, big data, cloud, shift left, continuous delivery, Cx/UX…) are included! None are excluded and there is room for more as they develop. The point here is the investment already made by organizations is NOT lost or wasted. The purpose of the mesh is to provide OPTIONS for the organization to exploit the principles and practices that meet the requirements within their governance  boundaries and their service management principles. Not all management practices fit all situations – knowing which will provide the necessary benefits in the resources allotted, is what should be used. Put the round peg in the round hole – forcing the square peg in the round hole is just too much effort.

The same could be said for the emerging technologies – how do we exploit those, again to the benefit of the organization and its consumers? Knowing the situation where each is appropriate, again within organizational governance boundaries, is critical. The comments where organizations are dropping ITIL or COBIT (or any management practice) to become Agile or only use DevOps shows a lack of understanding – not all services will benefit. Then who pays the price? The consumer of the service.

For the service managers who have been “pushing” ITIL for years and years (and yes, I fall in that group), we have the wealth of knowledge but we must adapt to the current world. The speed of digital is here and it’s only going to get faster. What changes can we make to ensure relevancy? VeriSM opens that door – it’s time to break out of the mold. To the new service manager, learn all that you can, be mentored by and learn from the experience that is out there and most importantly, continue to look for and find new ways to design, develop, deliver and improve services…and the practices that support those efforts. ITIL (or any management practice) is not dead…the information and best practices described remain valid. VeriSM is totally complementary and opens the door to incorporating the demands of today and the future.

ITIL® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

– Article by Suzanne Van Hove