Don’t think you need an IT service catalog? Think again! It’s like a supermarket of available services for IT and beyond; a catalog to make work life better. Before we go any further, we’re squeezing in a quick definition:
The service catalog also includes what the service is, what its objectives are, how it will be performed, how long it will take to complete, and what it will cost (if applicable). While on the surface, this may seem like little more than formal documentation, an IT service catalog actually provides tremendous value for those organizations that create and maintain them. By clearly defining and publishing their service offerings, IT service catalogs can:
1. Maximize Business Benefits
An IT service catalog aims to describe not only each service and its attributes, but its objectives. This intelligence can help to ensure that the IT services offered are closely aligned with critical business strategies, and will substantially contribute to the achievement of key corporate goals.
2. Optimize Service Delivery
Service catalogs provide insights that helps organizations to better allocate their IT resources – both human and technical – to enable services to be provisioned in a rapid and effective fashion. Additionally, by calling for more structure to service-related workflows, they help accelerate responsiveness to the end user base.
3. Reduce Support Costs
Greater insight into how much services cost, as well as the returns they deliver, can help companies minimize expenses by ensuring that funds are properly allocated. Additionally, it allows for more informed decision-making regarding the retirement of low-value services, so staff can focus their efforts on those services with a direct impact on the business.
4. Build Rapport with the End User Community
The service catalog, is an outward-facing document primarily directed at end users. The catalog describes services the end user might be interested in, what the service does, how it’s done, and how long they can expect it to take. It’s written with less “IT speak,” so, whether end users are internal or external, employees or customers, an IT service catalog will help them better understand what services are available to them, and how they will be executed. No longer will end users not know what to expect from IT.
5. Boost IT Productivity
By helping IT teams eliminate inefficiencies and redundancies in the core support services offered, IT service catalogs can dramatically improve productivity. Additionally, by outlining how the service will be performed, and in what time frame, an IT service catalog can help to facilitate economies of scale and eliminate both errors and waste.
One Small Step for IT, One Giant Leap for Organizations Beyond
Everyone in your company requests and delivers services to and from each other. From Human Resources and Marketing to Facilities and Procurement, each department is a service provider within their organizations, as well as a consumer of services. IT has the power to take the exclusivity out of the IT Service Catalog and allow it to spread its wings and fly across the enterprise.