Its a sad fact that many ITSM projects fail due to a lack of simple project governance and project management. In particular too many are started without clear measurable business goals or tangible objectives. also there is a problem with many project trying to do too much and e.g. ‘boil the ocean’ with ITSM processes, tools and organisational change management.

After being involved with many 100s of these projects over the years, my advice is simple – start with some clear objectives and ensure that these are measured and evaluated, start small, build incrementally and identify wins that build consensus and momentum – and don’t be too ambitious, but also don’t under-estimate the scale of people and organisational issues that you will need to tackle.

Key Points

  1. Set realistic targets and objectives
  2. Define clear business outcomes – if these can’t be defined, why are you doing this?
  3. Use pilots and incremental initiatives to build success
  4. Use project management – like you would for any other project

Supporting Documents

Quick Tips

  • If you are going to do an ITSM project, clarify what it will deliver for your organisation
  • Somehow the myth that ITIL is a panacea still prevails – dispel it
  • No matter what anyone says, you can’t just buy ‘ITIL’ / ITSM off the shelf + do it in a few weeks
  • You can achieve a lot of small targeted incremental service improvements in 30 days
  • Getting a system running quickly isn’t a new cure-all, ITSM goodness takes time
  • If you need funds for ITSM then define what this will deliver in simple business terms (1 slide?)
  • Don’t be too ambitious for your ITSM project in terms of cost savings – it’s hard to quantify
  • You can define benefits in terms of service quality + risk reduction, as well as cost benefit
  • The way you set up your ITSM project is as important as how you deliver it – objectives, outcomes, project – people, skills, realistic planning
  • If you don’t have a clear definition of what you do in IT, how can you know if you’re doing a good job?
  • ITIL training will help staff to learn ITSM + use the same language, but won’t change the organisation
  • There’s a whole group of people who just need an ITSM overview session rather than a 3 day foundation course
  • The tech guys just need to be told what to do + what’s in it for them, don’t ask them to define strategy  processes
  • Processes don’t happen or work by themselves – if there’s no governance then they’re a waste of time
  • Documentation is good – but engagement, empowerment and attitude are even better
  • Understanding technology is good, but understanding people and culture is even more useful