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Showing posts from 2020

Effective and Efficient Incident Response – Rethinking the way YOU work!

Learn more about new ways to do work! Explore DevOps, ITIL, SRE, XLA’s and more ! Silos are not uncommon, but when you silo the service desk from second and third-tier support staff, you likely have a recipe for pain. An ineffective incident response system within the organization is painful and disrupts the entire organization, especially the customers. We must shift the way we think and work to stabilize and improve the situation. One organization felt that they had a grip on service desk and incident management, but they blamed the subject matter experts for breaches to Service Level Agreements . The blame game is always detrimental. Their process consisted of the service desk agents receiving the incident, performing the initial triage, and then forwarding it to the subject matter expert based on how they categorized the incident. Sound familiar? Sometimes we pass tickets to and fro, get everybody and their brother involved, wait on email responses, and create chaos that frustrat

Grilled Pizza, or How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love Continual Improvement

Originally posted on owlpoint.com  August 6, 2020, written by Greg Smith , Director of Service Delivery and Resident Pizza Maker at OwlPoint Like many others, I’ve recently taken up a few “COVID hobbies” to keep me occupied (and sane). After homebrewing a few gallons of root beer, I decided I needed a hobby that didn’t result in such large quantities of food that had to be consumed in a relatively short amount of time. After some thought, I landed on making pizza on the grill as my next hobby attempt. Though I’ve always liked cooking and grilling, I’d never made pizza from scratch before, let alone doing so on the grill. It seemed like it would be finicky and have plenty of opportunities to mess up. But I’ve heard that there’s no such thing as a bad pizza, so I ordered two cast iron skillets from Amazon and set about my new hobby. Normally, when I engage in something new, I research the entirety of Google for hints, tips and what to avoid. After spending a couple of nights researchi

ITIL 4 and Site Reliability Engineering

Originally posted on owlpoint.com , August 11, 2020, and written by Mark Blanke , CEO of Owlpoint, and Chairman of The CIO Initiative One of the aspects of ITIL 4 that has impressed me the most is the integration and reference to so many other best practices and frameworks. One such reference is to Site Reliability Engineering aka SRE . SRE was originally developed by Google in the mid 2000s as a way of operating and administering productions system with a software development mindset. One of Google’s key drivers in building out SRE was to help bring developers and operations people together. Sounds like DevOps , right? In reality, they come from the same mindset, but there are key differences. Google only recently started sharing the SRE concepts. It was their secret sauce and a way to be far more effective in operating their systems and maintaining a highly reliable environment. However, over time, they realized that it would be better for them to share their methods, so the

ITIL 4 Specialist Drive Stakeholder Value: Maximizing the Consumer Experience

Originally posted on The AXELOS Blog , February 2020 and written by Christian Nissen , IT management consultant and lead author for the ITIL 4 Drive Stakeholder Value module. Back in the industrial society, goods were a dominant factor in our lives. But in the “service era” we prefer to replace ownership of goods with access to services and resources without necessarily owning them. This is happening with and without digital transformation , although the latter accelerates this phenomenon: think Uber and Airbnb. In this context, the ITIL® 4 Specialist Drive Stakeholder Value module – within ITIL 4 Managing Professional – is about the engagement and interaction between service providers and stakeholders and the conversion of demand to value via IT-enabled services. But what does this mean in practice? Previously, services were treated in the same way as manufactured goods: it was the customer’s responsibility to derive value. Conversely, the core concept of ITIL 4 is that value is co-c

Improving IT service outsourcing experience: The magic of bringing XLAs & SLAs together

Our friends over at CitrusCollab shared this really interesting case study: Improving IT service outsourcing experience: The magic of bringing XLAs™ & SLAs together Business Situation A regional utility company with 10,000 employees was ending a first time, multi-year IT infrastructure outsourcing contract with a well-known, sizeable India-based outsourcer. At the termination of the contract, the client was extremely unhappy with: the lack of service quality, the lack of promised innovation and cost reductions, the poor employee experience with the technical services delivery quality, the unacceptable governance experience with the management of disputes and issues, the ineffectiveness of financial penalties as a lever to obtain service performance improvements.  CitrusCollab consultants assisted in the outsourcing contract rebid process. We created several Employee Experience Level Agreements (XLA*) to augment the Service Level Agreement (SLA) for the new IT Infrastructur

The Four Dimensions of ITIL 4 and the Changing World of Work

Originally posted on owlpoint.com , June 15, 2020, and written by Mark Blanke , CEO of Owlpoint, and Chairman of The CIO Initiative The Four Dimensions of ITIL 4 and the Changing World of Work Recently Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey announced his employees could continue working from home “forever.” Knowing some people like an office environment, Dorsey is keeping the door open for those who want to return to the workplace. But ultimately, he is leaving it up to each employee to decide what they want to do. Dorsey’s statement follows reports that Fortune 100 corporations, including JPMorgan, Facebook, Capital One, Amazon, Microsoft, Zillow, and others, are extending work-from-home policies. Post-COVID-19, having employees in an office environment can be a sticky proposition. What if someone falls ill and infects others? What if a valued employee simply doesn’t want to come in – ever? What if half of your office space is continually empty? This leads to another question – why rent expen

IT's impact on the employee and customer experiences during COVID-19 (and beyond)

Originally posted on tsoshop.co.uk, AXELOS Global Best Practice Blog , July 2020 and written by Rae Ann Bruno , President of Business Solutions Training, Inc (BST) As it became evident that sheltering was going to be a requirement during COVID, things changed drastically and quickly for organizations. The workforce became remote virtually overnight. Information technology (IT) was suddenly 'at the table' with the business decision makers - some for the first time - to help organizations set-up a remote workforce and service their external customers. What IT accomplished for their organizations, demonstrates the value of the ITIL 4 guiding principles and a focus on the employee and customer experiences. According to PRINCE2 , a project is 'a temporary organization that is created for the purpose of delivering one or more business products according to an agreed business case.' Project managers are empowered to chair the project team and direct them toward successf

HVIT – An Atmospheric View of High Velocity IT

A Digital Transformation requires radical and profound change that orients an organization toward an entirely new direction and takes a service provider to an entirely different level! High Velocity IT (HVIT) is the application of digital technology that will likely play a major role in significant business enablement where speed is crucial! This is an Atmospheric View of High Velocity IT - Meditate on this for a few - POWERFUL! High Velocity IT is just a normal way of doing business for some organizations. For others it is an aspiration and many service providers are on a quest to get there fast. Best practice shows that there are three core elements required for HVIT and after taking a deeper dive into these aspects I became excited to see how these characteristics can change the world! Want to LEARN more? Get Certified in HVIT. The HVIT Certification Course takes a deeper dive into this model. This is more than a skillset it is an ability to shift the entire organization t

The EVOLUTION of the ENGINEER – Site Reliability Engineers

ALL CALL SREs REQUIRED!  Let’s take a walk down to the ocean and while you consider the opportunity, benefits, and $$$, think about dipping your toe in. Let’s explore Reliability, Site Reliability, and the Site Reliability Engineer .  No doubt the world is evolving. People are evolving and tech is evolving. Business and customer requirements are evolving. The evolution of systems requires the evolution of engineers. Nature and pandemics put undue stress on our resources! In comes the Certified Site Reliability Engineer .  "Urgent, Urgent, Urgent… All hands on deck!",  is a call that practitioners, managers, and organizations do not want to hear and recognize must stop! Reliability – At a minimum, we recognize that the delivery of service is not dependent solely on the quality of the product itself and the goal is not that the products or service merely be deployed. A service must be operated and sustained over a period. How long? For the life of the service.

How to Move and SHIFT the CULTURE!

There are three core frameworks that can help us to shift the way we think, do work, and ultimately shape the behaviors and values that are the heartbeat of our organizations - CULTURE! Each of these models can be used to identify, analyze, and move an organization to new heights, new ways of collaborating and increasing speed and value for service consumers. Models for learning how to "Shift the Culture!” Erickson Model – Identifies the stages of psychosocial development  The Erickson Model helps as a starting point for “Where are we now?”. Westrum Model – Focus here is on the organizational types :  - Pathological  - Bureaucratic  - Generative  The Westrum Model helps providers get detail on the behaviors within their organization and teams.  Laloux’s Culture Model – Frederic Laloux’s model provides a clear picture of how culture may evolve in an organization. Laloux expands the concepts of the two previous models. The model comes f

Culture Hack Required!

The risk is below the water and we are headed right towards it. Organizational Transformations, Business Transformations and IT Transformations are all at their very core really CULTURE Transformations!  Ok friends, I’ve loaded this one up. For a deeper dive into some of the topics addressed in this blog, be sure to click on the embedded­­ links provided. Culture must be considered to Drive Stakeholder Value - This is POWERFUL! Think about how a culture shift  enables the following: Mapping the customer journey with all touchpoints and interactions. You can potentially map the customer journey and map the stakeholder’s roles and responsibilities brilliantly, but what about the cultural shift to enable these stakeholders? Without it we will likely fall short of our goals. If we have any hope of converting demand into value via IT-enabled services – culture is key!  Properly designing XLAs , SLAs and meaningful measurement models.  Without culture, the risk is high

Virtual Classrooms WORK for YOU - the LEARNER!

Considering an Instructor-Led Virtual Classroom for your next class?  Online Instructor-Led Virtual Classrooms allow YOU the learner to immerse in material that is presented in a fun, practical manner. Try it! I promise you won’t be disappointed.  Virtual Classrooms are available for Certification and Non-Certification courses including: Agile Service Management   DevOps ITIL CX and XLA Training Value Stream Mapping (VSM) This is NOT a Webinar! This is NOT an e-learning self-paced computerized course.  You are not on your own!  Instructor-Led Virtual Classrooms Allow YOU to :  Learn online with a live experienced instructor. Interact in group discussions and activities with others in the class. Engage your instructor with ongoing Q and A throughout. Listen to or share real-world examples. Participate in analyzing sample exam questions with the instructor.  Collaborate with chat, open mic, polls, and other interactive tools – VOIP or phone!  Learn f

Experience Level Agreements & Surveillance Capitalism

Written for LinkedIn.com by  John Worthington ,  Director of Customer Success at eG Innovations Experience Level Agreements & Surveillance Capitalism Does the Customer Really Come First? On Sundays, I try to relax and not think too much about business, but I almost always fail to do so--- Monday’s right around the corner and it’s impossible not to begin thinking about the week ahead... As it happens today I read an article in the NY Times and was immediately drawn to work. Being focused on the digital user experience and recently completing ITSM Academy’s The Essence of eXperience (XLA) Certification   (see my review here ), I found this article unsettling to say the least. Don’t get me wrong, managing the customer experience is definitely key to survival in the digital age, but it’s not a big jump from managing the experience to managing the customer . “These data flows empty into surveillance capitalists’ computational factories, called ‘artificial intelligence’, w

Why We Must Transcend Silos

Survival - For a service provider to survive in today’s fast-paced delivery environment they will likely need to move away from old ways of doing things. We hear things like; "Terms matter", "Shift your thinking!" or "Shift the focus!" and "CHANGE the CULTURE!".  It is becoming more evident than ever that our organizational structure including silos could be an impediment. Structure – An organization’s structure impacts how work gets done. Structure influences the actual product and service architecture. Some organizational structures even have siloed within silos.  Structure matters. Silos can fracture the velocity of delivery and the quality of what is delivered. We can transcend silos!  ITIL 4 Foundation or the new DevOps Leader  certification classes are a good place to start learning new and better ways for the conversion of demand to value for service providers. Considerations for Transcending Silos Measurement – High performin

SRE Is the Most Innovative Approach to ITSM Since ITIL

Originally published on DevOps.com , written by Jayne Groll , CEO of DevOps Institute For over a decade, ITIL has been the leading ITSM framework adopted by enterprises across the globe. So, what is driving a rapidly increasing interest in Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) as a service management alternative? In its own words, Google refers to SRE as its approach to service management: “The SRE team is responsible for the availability, latency, performance, efficiency, change management, monitoring, emergency response and capacity planning.” In traditional ITSM terms, the role of the SRE is responsible for service level, change, availability, event, incident, problem, capacity, performance, infrastructure and platform management. While the operational practice areas may be similar, there are significant differences in how the practices are approached. ITIL4 Framework Compared to SRE Released in 2019, the newest update to ITIL4 remains a complex governance model with four dimensi

Up YOUR Game – Become a Certified Process Design Engineer!

I find that there are many people that do not understand WHAT a Certified Process Design Engineer (CPDE) really is (be sure to scroll down on the page and then download the free whitepaper for surprising details). The CPDE role is likely much broader and deeper than you might think! Time and Money?! Yes, but not at the expense of quality and stability!  The role of a Certified Process Design Engineer is a critical skill set for all IT service  providers. There are many frameworks and standards that  define practices and methods for achieving success; ITIL 4 , Agile , Lean , DevOps , COBIT, ISO, and Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) are only a few. My point is that while each describes processes and controls (what to do), they don’t provide clear, step-by-step methods and techniques for designing, reengineering and improving processes (how to do it).  A Certified Process Design Engineer equips managers and staff at all levels to lead the organization to do t