Understanding Information Technology Infrastructure Library v3 Foundation – Part 2

Hope you enjoyed going through the first part of this series and let me continue with the next & final part of this series.

3. Service Transition:

The objective is to ensure that new, modified or services which are retired meet the expectations of the business as document in the service strategy and service design stages of the life cycle. In this stage the planning and managing services are efficiently and effectively taken care including the risk. It sets right expectation on the performance and the use of new or changed services. It practices release of planning, building, testing, evaluating and deploying new or changed services. With the introduction of new services it also takes care of the existing services minimizing the unintended consequences of change.

Let us now know in phrase about the important topics which are involved in Service Transition

Configuration Item – It is a service asset that needs to be managed in order to deliver IT services.

Configuration Management System – To manage large and complex IT services & infrastructure, service assets and configuration management requires the use of a supporting system known as the configuration management system. It holds all the information about configuration item within the designated scope. It maintains the relationship between all the service components and may also include records for related incidents, problem, known errors, changes and releases.

Service Knowledge Management System – It is the set of tools and databases that are used to manage knowledge, information and data. Many configuration items are available in the form of knowledge or information and these are typically stored in the SKMS – for example, a service level agreement, a report template or a definitive media library (I will explain you soon below).

Definitive Media Library – It is the secure library in which the definitive authorized versions of all media (Hardware) configuration items are stored and protected. It contains all master copies of controlled documentation, definitive copies of purchased software with licensed document or information.

Change Management Process – It can be anything which is in addition, modification or removal that could have an effect on IT services. It includes changes to all architectures, processes, tools, metrics and documentation as well as changes to IT services and other configuration items. It has three different type of service change.

Standard Change – A pre-authorized change that is low risk, relatively common and follows a procedure or work instruction.

Emergency Change – A change that must be implemented as soon as possible for example to resolve a major incident.

Normal Change – Any service change that is not a standard change or an emergency change.

Change Model – It is also called as Change Template predefining the steps that should be taken to handle a particular type of change in an agreed way.

Remediation Planning – Actions which are taken to recover after a failed change or release. That is the reason test plans are done to validate successful change or release.

Change Advisory Board – It is a body that exist to support the authorization of changes and to assist change management in the assessment, prioritization and scheduling of changes. It also involvement of different stake holders depending on the changes being considered.

Emergency CAB – When there is requirement of change need to be done in the services which may be delayed due to the process involved in CAB, that change could be done as quickly as possible with the help of ECAB and later the rest of the process needs to be taken care.

Release and Deploy Management – It is to plan, schedule and control the build, test and deployment of releases, and to deliver new functionality required by the business while protecting the integrity of existing services. There are four phases to release and deployment as mentioned below.

R & D Planning – This phase starts with change management authorization to plan a release and ends with change management authorization to create the release.

Release build & Test – This phase starts with change management authorization to build the release and ends with change management authorization for the baseline released package to be checked in definitive media library.

Deployment – This phase starts with change management authorization to deploy the release package to one or more target environments and ends with handover to the service operation functions.

Review and Close – Experiences and feedbacks are captured, performance targets and achievements are reviewed and lessons are learned.

Knowledge Management – It is to ensure that reliable and secure knowledge, information and data is available throughout the service lifecycle.

DIKW – For now it is just essential to know how it moves forward Data à Information à Knowledge à Wisdom.

4. Service Operation:

The purpose is to coordinate and carry out the activities and processes required to deliver and manage services at agreed level to business users and customers. It is also responsible for the ongoing management of the technology that is used to deliver and support services. The value is realized by operating the services effectively and efficiently. Also strategic objectives are ultimately realized through service operation hence making it a critical capability. The objective is to maintain business satisfaction and confidence in IT through effective and efficient delivery and support of agreed IT services. It minimized the impact of service outages on day-to-day business activities.

Let us now know in phrase about the important topics which are involved in Service Operation

Workaround – A temporary way of overcoming the difficulties in the services.

Known Error & KEDB – As soon as any diagnose is complete and particularly where a workaround has been found (even though it may not be a permanent solution), a known error record must be raised and placed in the Known Error Database so that if further incident or problem arise they can be identified and the services are restored more quickly.

Role of communications – An important principle is that all communication must have an intended purpose or a resultant action.

Incident Management – The purpose of incident management is to restore normal service as quickly as possible and minimize the adverse impact on business operations. It can be reported by anyone.

Problem Management – It is the process responsible for managing the life cycle of all problems and ITIL defines a problem as the underlying cause of one or more incidents. Problem management seeks to get the root cause of incidents, document and communicate known errors and initiate actions to improve or correct the situation. The objective is to prevent problems and resulting incidents from happening, eliminate recurring incidents and minimize the impact of incidents that cannot be prevented.

There is a good Incident & Problem Management process chart available you can refer to.

Event Management – It is the basis for operational monitoring and control. If events are programmed to communicate operational information as well as warning and exceptions, they can also be used as a basis for automating many routine operation management activities.

Request Fulfillment – It provides a channel for uses to request and receive standard services for which a predefined authorization and qualification process exists. It also provides information to users and customers about the availability of services and the procedure for obtaining them.

Access Management – It is to provide the rights for users to be able to use a service or group of services. It is therefore the execution of policies and action defined in the information security management.

5. Continual Service Improvement

It is the last but not the least and important volume, it is not actually a separate but evolves with the other above mentioned services.  The purpose is to align IT services with changing business needs by identifying and implementing improvements to IT services that support business processes. It reviews, analyzes and make recommendations on improvement opportunities in each lifecycle phase. It improves IT service quality and the efficiency, cost effectiveness of delivering IT services with affecting customer satisfaction adversely, it ensures applicable quality management methods that are used to support continual service improvement, it also ensures that processes have clearly defined objectives and measurement that lead to actionable improvements.

W. Edwards Deming is best known for his management philosophy leading to higher quality, increased productivity and a more competitive position. He formulated 14 points of attentions for managers.

The PDCA (Plan, Do, Check and Act) cycle is critical at two points in CSI: Implementation of CSI and for the application of CSI to services and service management processes.

Seven Step Improvement Process – The purpose is to define and manage the steps needed to identify, define, gather, process, analyze, present and implement. It also includes the analysis of the performance and capabilities of services, processes throughout the lifecycle, partners and technology.

CSI Approach – It can be summarized as mentioned below.

  • What is the vision? – Business vision, mission, goals and objectives?
  • Where are we now? – Baseline assessment. (Assessment of the current situation)
  • Where do we want to be? – Measurable targets,
  • How do we get there? – detail the CSI plan to achieve higher quality service
  • Did we get there? – verify the measurement and metrics are in place to ensure that milestones were achieved.
  • How do we keep the momentum going? – The process should ensure that the momentum for quality improvement is maintained by assuring that changes become embedded in the organization.

Hope this was informative.

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