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Showing posts from September, 2012

Reference Models

In 1999 the US Federal Government took a step toward improving the quality, performance, delivery and support of IT-based services. This step was the creation of the Federal Enterprise Architecture Framework (FEAF).  This framework consists of five reference models. A reference model is an abstract or logical framework or structure that describes the interconnections between ideas, concepts, elements or components that make up a whole system. We can look to the FEAF reference models as a guide for how we might approach an ITSM implementation regardless of industry or organizational structure. Performance Reference Model : Used to measure the performance of major IT investments  This equates to a CSI or Metrics Program  Business Reference Model : Process-driven structure that describe business operations regardless of the organization that performs them This equates to a Service Portfolio framework Services Reference Model : Classification of service components an

Service Measurement

Before my life as an ITSM professor, I was responsible for delivering the monthly reports on IT at a large specialty retailer organization with multiple remote locations in several states across America.   I delivered many of the standard reports for Service Desk, Change Management and System Availability.   System availability was a standard report that reviewed from a system / hardware perspective just how available the systems and their supporting components were throughout the month.   This was delivered in percentages and the goal was to maintain 100% infrastructure availability. Even though many of the individual systems and components were meeting their required SLAs, our customers were still not satisfied with the availability and performance of critical services.   W e needed to re-address what should we be measuring and how should we be reporting achievements back to the business and customers. W e decided to report on the end to end delivery of our services and the a

The Myth of Metrics

The world record for the 100 meter dash is 9.58 seconds. The world record for the mile is 3 minutes 43 seconds. The record for running a marathon is 2 hours and 3 minutes. The 100 meter freestyle swimming record is 44 seconds. The world land speed record is 760 miles per hour (1223 KmH).   And the list goes on and on. So what do these records have to do with ITSM? First these records are metrics: results of measurements. They measure the performance of processes (structured steps or actions undertaken to achieve an objective) and indicate the level of performance of people and vehicles doing the process. Second these data points reveal the myth of metrics. This myth is the belief that a person or organization can pick a data point or metric (desired result) before doing a process and through sheer willpower or force of action achieve that point. For example a person could not pick a time such as one (1) hour and say they are going to run a full length marathon in one hour. The only w