Having discussed the various maturity levels in my previous blog, next important question for you is to ask yourself what level is appropriate for your business and customers. Do all IT organizations aspire to become ‘value-add’ business partners with their customers? One can simply argue that if any of the core business process is automated/enabled by some level of IT services, then IT is perhaps playing a critical role in the success of that business. Other relevant aspects that may be considered in determining the relative importance of IT are as follows:
- Reports and dashboards: Are reports and dashboards generated by using IT systems? Are these reports used by senior management to make important business decisions? Are these reports used by IT senior management to plan IT improvements?
- Computational needs: Do businesses and/or customers and/or end users depend heavily on IT systems to perform complex large volume data analytics and calculations? Do these computations provide business critical information? Can businesses be profitable without such computational capabilities? Are IT systems used to store the results of these computations?
- User base: What percentage of total employees in your company (in case of internal IT service provider) or in your customers company (in case of external IT service provider) depend on IT for completing their everyday tasks?
- Business challenges: Are business challenges associated with lack of proper IT services? Does your customer’s business face challenges if IT does not deliver right products/services at the right levels?
- Communication and collaboration: Do your customers use IT for collaboration and communication related activities?
- Business process enablement: Is IT used to enable all or part of business processes?
- Support IT Services vs. Enabling IT Services: Finally, is IT used in a “support” function or is viewed as an “enabling” function? Do your customers/businesses believe that IT is just there to support their work through email, storage, telephone, and other basic support services? Or, is IT used to really enable your businesses to better provide their products/services to their end customers? For example, if you are in a manufacturing business, does your business depend on IT for their supply chain management processes?
In order to achieve organizational maturity level 3 or above, a comprehensive effort to improve service management processes needs to be planned and implemented. If your organization is currently at maturity level 1, then achieving maturity level 3 or above will mean more cultural transformation than any other single factor. In the process, the overall IT capability–the ability of an organization to achieve the most business benefits from its IT resources–is enhanced.
What maturity level is your organization? What are some challenges you’ve faced and how have you been able to overcome them? Share your feedback here.
To learn more about ITIL, check out Learning Tree’s course, Putting ITIL® into Practice: A Roadmap for Transformation.