Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is a set of best practices in the industry for IT Service Management (ITSM). It focuses on aligning IT services with the needs of the business. ITIL provides guidance to service providers on the provision of quality IT services, and on the processes, functions and other capabilities needed to support them. ITIL is the most widely recognized framework for ITSM in the world. The ITIL framework is based on the five stages of the service lifecycle.
- Service Strategy
- Service Design
- Service Transition
- Service Operation
- Continual Service Improvement
Each stage of the lifecycle exerts influence on the others and relies on them for inputs and feedback. In this way, a constant set of checks and balances throughout the service lifecycle ensures that as business demand changes with business need, the services can adapt and respond effectively.
The latest version of ITIL is ITIL v3 (2011 edition) updated in July 2011, which includes 26 different processes and 4 functions.
Back in the middle of 2011, ITSC has looked out for the possibilities to bring the ITIL best practices to our center as guidance for continuous improvement of our IT services provided for the HKUST community.
We decided that staff in the Center should be equipped with the basic ITIL knowledge as a first step. So, we looked out for external qualified ITIL trainers and had organized five different ITIL foundation in-house trainings for all staff in ITSC. In the first half of 2012, all the ITIL foundation trainings had been completed and all staff including professional, administrative and clerical staff in ITSC had attended. Sixty-three of our staff who took the ITIL Foundation examination have all passed and have been awarded the official ITIL v3 (2011 edition) Foundation Certificate.
To gain more knowledge about implementing ITIL, several senior staff in ITSC have attended different ITIL workshops, either in-house or public, led by external consultants in the recent months. These one- to two-day workshops have highlighted to us the way to define our roadmap, do our own maturity assessment and find details about process implementation, etc. In one workshop, we also have the chance to exchange some valuable experience with other institutions in HK about their implementation of ITSM.
"The Goal of ITSM is to get disparate functional groups to work in a common manner based on accepted industry best practices to deliver services and value their customers want. In short ITSM is a people project supported by tools and processes, not a tool or process project supported by people!"
- Troy DuMoulin, Consultant of Pink Elephant
The following five ITIL processes are what we have identified to implement in the coming three years:
- Incident Management
- Problem Management
- Change Management
- Service Asset and Configuration Management
- Information Security Management
To move forward in the coming months, we will conduct our own baseline process assessment, set our priorities for areas to improve and then come up with a detail process improvement plan. We will start the implementation of the "Incident Management" process including the "Service Desk" function, together with the "Change Management" process first. We hope that our efforts in continuous service improvement can help to provide better quality service for our community to support the University in future.