Your organization’s service catalog is a “here and now” document that:
- Tells end users what IT services are available
- Allows them to “shop” for them
- Gives them access to a self-service portfolio
- Allows them to submit request tickets
The service portfolio extends the service catalog in both time and depth. Service portfolios include retired services, existing services, and services under consideration or being planned. It also makes a business case for IT services based on business values and costs. IT service portfolios are as different as the organizations that use them and should follow these best practices:
- Making sure the portfolio groups similar business services, such as financial or technical services
- Stating services in business rather than technology terms
- Ensuring IT services provide measurable business value
- Reviewing the service portfolio periodically for updates and corrections
If you’re not sure where to start with your organization’s service portfolio, here are some examples to help you get going.
Symfoni is a leading northern European collaboration and IT management consulting firm that builds collaborative solutions and offers software solutions, managed services and support, as well as consulting services. Symfoni takes the following approach to the service portfolio: “The service portfolio may provide tools for more efficient service delivery, and better control. In the best case the service portfolio contains description of productized service definitions such as ‘these services with these terms and conditions are available for you.'” Scroll about three-fourths of the way down the page to see their service portfolio diagram.
Lontra is an IT consulting firm that provides customers with education and information on best practices for developing comprehensive portfolios that advance IT and business objectives. Lontra interprets the IT service portfolio as a document that includes information from the service catalog, as well as a repository of service level agreements and service level targets for various IT services. The portfolio should also speak to business impact of noncompliance with service level agreements. Finally, the portfolio should include cost models for services, information on end-user service consumption, and demand planning information.
Enterprise service management company e-ServiceSuite consults and implements enterprise service management solutions and sales automation software. E-ServiceSuite’s approach involves creation of a two-volume IT service portfolio consisting of an application portfolio and a project portfolio. The application portfolio analyzes established and projected IT systems based on their profitability, familiarity with the system, and external forces like obsolescence. The project portfolio addresses project spending issues in terms of potential ROI and reducing investment overlaps. Together, the two address past, present, and future IT services comprehensively.
Scientrix Strategy Matrices is a provider of consulting, training, and change management, and technology to clients. Scientrix bridges gaps between strategy, engagement, and execution. Scientrix’s view is that, “The IT Director has to ensure that his portfolio of IT projects is constantly aligned and prioritised according to these changing demands and requirements.” The service portfolio should be in sync with the overall organizational strategy, and it should communicate clearly to your organization’s business side.
Project-Open is comprised of project management specialists that integrate CRM, sales, project tracking, collaboration, hours tracking, invoicing and payments. It is used by over 1,000 companies in 25 countries. Project-Open’s approach to the service portfolio is that it should allow management of projects and development requests and support decision making by senior management by providing the information they need to be able to prioritize requests.
Your organization will define “IT service portfolio” according to your needs and organizational culture. It should talk about past, present, and future IT services that add value, and it should be reevaluated periodically as technology and business needs change.
Samanage is a leading provider of ITSM software, and it includes the tools your organization needs to manage IT assets and services. Together with Samanage, you and your team can provide the services defined in your portfolio in a cost-effective and flexible manner.
About Nathan Riley
Nathan Riley is a Sales Director for Samanage. He has seven years experience in the industry, and has had a front row seat for the evolution of service management as a platform for the entire organization. He helps organizations ranging from SMB to Fortune 500 bring customized service to employees. Nathan proudly served the United States Armed Forces in the United States Marine Corps.
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