IT transformation alone – as a functional concept – might deliver a good process outcome. However, the difference between that and digital transformation is like standing on the face of earth and then travelling to stand on the moon.
Having just certified via the ITIL® 4 Managing Professional Transition Module, I can see this is the digital transformation piece the world needs and wants right now – making things better, faster and cheaper. This is definitely about enterprise service management and the relationship between IT and the rest of an organization.
Why? Co-creating value with customers is “baked in” across all of the course modules and – within the past year – every business I spoke to has been talking about digital transformation, business relationship management and customer experience – both internally and externally.
Bringing together IT working methods
I think ITIL 4 has made a great job of providing a solid perspective on how to use different frameworks and methods together.
It goes into a level of detail that makes sense for ITIL practitioners without trying to make people experts in any one method. It’s more about how people think and collaborate to co-create value.
In the High Velocity IT module, especially, what resonates is the difference between IT transformation and digital transformation: instead of propagating siloed working, it’s about improving communication between IT and business functions and advancing in an intertwined relationship.
It emphasizes that IT transformation – while “OK” – is not what business and customers want; conversely, digital transformation is what they want and the user experience needs managing end-to-end.
Understanding ITIL 4’s service value system
While ITIL, previously, was very process-driven (doing a process with the intention of creating value) the service value system in ITIL 4 incorporates processes but within value streams and practices that support value co-creation.
If you first ask what value means to the customer and work backwards, the value stream facilitates collaborative working and digital transformation. Meanwhile, ITIL 4’s four dimensions of service management reflect the needs of IT and business, allowing for scalability of the best practice to continue well into the future.
An evolution in capability
The changes I’ve made in my approach in the past two to three years are taken even further in ITIL 4 Managing Professional.
The next stage in my evolution is the ability to look at business from a value perspective: really understanding customer challenges so I can offer solutions facilitated in a value chain rather than saying “here’s our service catalogue”.
Instead, it’s about having ongoing conversations which consider every customer touch point, how we improve it and how we remove waste to provide the outcome and value they want.
The value of continuing certification
Certifying in ITIL gives you credibility. So, when you’re approaching people in other disciplines and departments (Agile, DevOps, etc.) you can take ITIL 4 knowledge to support your ability to suggest how to break down silos and trust the ideas you’re bringing.
Ultimately, what you’re saying is “let’s expand our knowledge across the business and customer to facilitate value”.
ITIL 4 Managing Professional looks beyond the status quo and focuses firmly on what you’re doing, for whom and how you give it to them.