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What ITIL® Means To Modern Businesses and Project Managers Today - And How To Get Started In Service Management

By Russell Kenrick, Managing Director at ILX Group | 8 April 2016

Abstract

ITIL® has come a long way since its introduction in the 1980s as a set of practices for IT Service Management (ITSM) focused on aligning IT services with the needs of business. It has become so much more than an operational framework for IT service delivery and now offers internationally adopted best practice guidance for any organisation delivering all types of projects and services. In this article, Russell Kenrick, Managing Director at ILX, looks at what ITIL offers to project managers against a backdrop of globalisation and offers some tips on getting started with integrating ITIL best practice into project management.

Introduction

ITIL® has come a long way since its introduction in the early part of the 1980s as a simple set of practices for IT Service Management (ITSM) focused on aligning IT services with the needs of businesses. It has become so much more than an operational framework for IT service delivery and now offers internationally adopted best practice guidance for any organisation delivering all types of projects and services.

ITIL enables global businesses and project managers to deliver better and more efficient services. Traditionally, service management would take over where project management finished and there was a disconnect between the two. When project managers completed their project and threw their ball over the fence, service managers on the other side had no idea what to expect – a beach ball or a bomb. That should no longer be the case. The ITIL framework encompasses the project strategy from the creation of the design of the final services to be delivered through to the transition of those new, altered or even removed services in live delivery.

Since 2007, ITIL, formerly an acronym for Information Technology Infrastructure Library, has been managed by AXELOS, a joint venture between Capita and the UK Cabinet Office. ITIL is no longer just a framework for UK Government, but is being deployed around the world in all sectors from banking to retail, hospitality to manufacturing.

Benefits

AXELOS identifies a number of key benefits for individuals and global organisations arising from being ITIL trained1. ITIL enables service management staff to get involved with plans for new service delivery and service improvement at a much earlier stage, ensuring a smooth transition at the delivery stage. Project managers retain ultimate control of the initial planning and design stages, but ITIL embeds the need to plan for the delivery stage from the start and integrates a service management point of view throughout the creation and testing stages too. This way, using ITIL, projects deliver the expected service benefits because the focus from the beginning is far more on the service outcomes.

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