Service management

Written on 16 July 2014, 09:16pm

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– How many Service Desk staff does it take to change a light-bulb?
a) None. Restoration of service is a Level 1 Support function

Multiple choices here🙂

I recently spent some time reading about service management, more specifically, ITIL. Some notes – in random order – below:
Service – a means of delivering value to customers by facilitating outcomes that customers want to achieve without the ownership of specific costs or risks
Service Management – a set of specialized organisation capabilities for providing value to customers in the form of services
Process – a structured set of activities designed to accomplish a specific objective.

Physical product value – its intrinsic value, resale value. Value of a service comes from what it enables someone to do
Value is defined by the customer. Value changes over time.
Value = customer perceptions + customer preferences + business outcomes
Value = utility (what the service does) + warranty (how well the service performs)
Assets – any resource or capability.
Resources – tangible assets that can be bought (infrastructure, information)
Capabilities – intangible assets that can be developed over time (people, knowledge)
Functions = a team or group of people and the tools they use to carry out a process: service desk,  technical management,  IT operations management, application management
– Type of investments: run the business, grow the business, transform the business

Serviceability – the ability of a 3rd party supplier to meet the terms of its contract
Reliability – how long a function can be performed without interruption (uptime or MTBF)
Maintainability – how quickly and effective can be a function restored after failure (downtime or MTRS)
– uptime + downtime = MTBSI (Mean Time Between System Incidents) = MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) + MTRS (Mean Time to Restore Service)
strategical, tactical, operational, commodity suppliers
cold/warm/hot standby (gradual/intermediate/immediate recovery)
Definitive Media Library (DML) – one or more locations where the definitive and authorized versions of all software are securely stored
– Release deployment: bing bang vs phased, pushed vs pulled, manual vs automated.
Early Life Support. Once a new service has been deployed in the live environment, support can be provided for a limited period of time.
Data, Information, Knowledge, Wisdom:
Data – a set of discrete facts. Ex – the date and time when an incident has been logged
Information – comes from providing context to data Ex – average time to close priority 2 incidents
Knowledge – is composed of tacit experiences, ideas, insights, judgement of individuals. Ex – average time to close priority 2 incidents has increased by 10% since a new version of service
Wisdom – makes use of wisdom to create value through well-informed decisions. Ex – the increase in time to close priority 2 incidents is due to poor quality documentation for the new version of the service.

Incident – an unplanned interruption to an IT service or reduction of quality of an IT service.
Problem – the cause of one or more incidents.
– Incident Management focuses on restoring services to normal state operation
– Problem Management focuses on finding ways to prevent incidents from happening.
Incidents do not become problems
Known error – a problem that has a documented root cause and a workaround.
Workaround – a way of reducing or eliminating the impact of an incident or problem for which a full resolution is not yet available (ex – restart it 🙂
Escalation can be horizontal (functional) vs vertical (hierarchic)
Event – a change of state that has a significance. Event types: informational, warning, exception
Alert – a notification that a threshold has been reached
Service request – a formal request from a user. Incidents cannot be planned; but service requests can.
Service Desk – Single point of contact for IT users on a day-to-day basis. Handles service requests and incidents. Can make the difference between a poor service delivered well, and a good service poorly delivered.
– Service Desk types: local, centralized, virtualized or follow the sun.

Continual Service Improvement: What is the vision? Where are we now? Where do we want to be? How do we get there? Did we get there? How do we keep the momentum going?
Critical Success Factors (CSF) – Something that must happen if an IT service, process, plan, project is to succeed.
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are used to measure the achievement of each CSF.

ITIL Service Lifecycle  – Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition, Service Operation, Continual Service Improvement


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