Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Seven Enablers & Constraints of ITSM

Why do many organizations stumble in their initial attempts at implementing ITSM best practices? ITSM Watch guest columnist Troy DuMoulin of Pink Elephant writes: Seven themes consistently emerge.

These themes represent the enablers that provide the vision, direction, energy and resources to produce lasting change across the political boundaries.

According to DuMoulin, the seven constantly emerging themes are as follows:

  • Leadership: Executive and senior level support, sponsorship and active participation.
  • Resources: Access to necessary project and ongoing process resources (time, people, funding).
  • Knowledge & Skill: The level of communication, information, knowledge and skill related to ITSM.
  • Integrated Tools: Availability of integrated ITSM tools to support process workflow and automation.
  • Ability to Deploy: The political capability to deploy new policies, processes and tools across organizational silos.
  • Ability to Affect Behavioral Change: Changing organizational behavior/culture and ensuring compliance to new practices over the long term.
  • ITSM Program Momentum: Sustaining the momentum, priority and funding for the ITSM programs.

While I agree with the author regarding the recurring themes of any ITSM adoption and implementation project, I believe he hugely understates the significance of the effect of the "people" factor. In each of the themes highlighted in the article, the role of people is very significant.

It's simply not enough to have executive and senior level support and sponsorship. Organizational politics still has far too much influence on project success.

Having the right people in positions of leadership, finding the right people with appropriate levels of ITSM knowledge and authority is critical.

Understanding how people are rewarded and motivated is key. No matter which tool you have or how great the consultants claim to be, nothing will happen without the right organizational structure.

In fact, I often advise that if the organization is not willing first to address the underlying cultural and political issues, the money may be better spent elsewhere.

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