Maybe your organization has recently implemented an ITIL service catalog, or perhaps you’re in the process of launching one.
Try to incorporate one of these into your service catalog kickoff. Because they’re awesome.
Once your catalog is out there, your job is far from over. Managing your ITIL service catalog is the key to making it a worthwhile endeavor that streamlines services and saves money. So how do you go about managing your service catalog? Here are 5 tips.
1. Get Into the Correct Headspace
Have you ever written a paper for a technical conference, presented it, and then relegated it to a file drawer, never to be used again (except when updating your resume)? The ITIL service catalog isn’t like that. It isn’t a project that you “finish.” Your service catalog is a tool that should be used all the time, and it’s a tool that will need updating now and then. During the life span of your service catalog, you will need to assess it quarterly or when there’s a major change in your organization’s IT environment to ensure that:
- Menu choices reflect services people need
- Services no longer offered are deleted
- The catalog as a whole meets business needs
2. Define Who Is Responsible for What
This should be done as part of the creation process, or as soon as possible thereafter. Responsibilities for maintaining the service catalog should be spelled out clearly, and if you hire someone new to do this, these responsibilities should be made clear in the job description. You also need to define metrics associated with service catalog use, like average time to resolution of issues, statistics on which services are most requested, and how much money is saved because of people using the service catalog.
3. Take an Objective Look at How Complicated the Catalog Is
You work in IT all the time, so the ITIL service catalog is your bailiwick. However, to people in other departments, the catalog may not be that clear. Solicit feedback from end users in a variety of job categories about their opinions on the service catalog. If you repeatedly get told that it’s too complicated or too jargon-riddled, then you may need to make some changes before it will be as useful as it can be.
4. Ensure Higher-Ups Show Support by Using the Service Catalog
Hey, if he can use the service catalog between entertaining clients and playing golf, anyone can.
Buy-in from the executive floor is important to the success of your ITIL service catalog. When the top ranking people use it, people at other levels are more likely to use it. If executives forego using the service catalog, many people will wonder why they should use it. The implementation of a service catalog marks a fairly major shift in how IT services are delivered, and this shift is more likely to be successful if senior management buys into it and says so.
5. Define Metrics and Report Openly on Them
Like defining who is responsible for what, defining the metrics you’re going to use to gauge and fine-tune the service catalog should take place before it’s implemented. If that didn’t happen, however, you need to define exactly how you’re going to measure the success or failure of the catalog. How many people used the service catalog in the previous six-month period? How have problem resolution times been affected? Is the IT service desk managing tickets more efficiently? Define how you’re going to measure success, measure it, and report it openly. Good scores are definitely worth being proud of, but even bad scores are valuable, because they can help you figure out where to improve.
Building an ITIL service catalog is easier when your IT service management program is built on great service management software. Samanage, leading SaaS service management software, comes with service catalog capability baked in, so you can more easily create a service catalog that optimizes IT service delivery, reduces support costs, and improves communication with end users.
About Taylor Burgess
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