I have found the structuring principles of ITIL® Practitioner extremely valuable for my latest project with a social services cooperative in Italy which, although relatively small in size, has ambitious plans for continued expansion.
Having achieved double-digit growth over recent years, the organization needed to redesign its business systems to bring them in line with current operations and ensure they continued to run efficiently as they grow. My role was to support this transition and help the business adopt best management practice – and this is where ITIL Practitioner proved invaluable in terms of providing a concise framework to manage the process.
Rules of engagement
In this small business environment – with limited resources – it was important to be aware that the team was not in a position to digest and handle too much change at once. So a more progressive approach was needed that focused on identifying small improvements, designed to make a tangible difference in a short space of time.
In this scenario, the ITIL Practitioner Guiding Principle of Start Where You Are was extremely useful. Once we determined the ‘As-is’ status, we could then look to the ‘To-be’ and use a CSI approach to get there.
In practical terms as a result of this approach, we identified three defined processes that needed to be improved: request fulfilment, incident management and security processes.
While Start Where You Are was especially helpful on this project, every Guiding Principle added value.
It’s also worth noting that my experience challenges the traditional view that ITIL is not relevant for small businesses. In fact, ITIL Practitioner makes it highly applicable by encouraging a focused approach that delivers results rapidly.
In the case of the social services cooperative, quick wins were particularly pressing as they needed to release resources to do other things.
Having worked in industry for the last two decades, I believe ITIL Practitioner is flexible enough to be used in all sorts of situations and size of organization. Its principles act as a Pole Star which guides you towards the real objective and the practical changes that need to take place. I even found it useful on a personal level as a checklist – it has an almost project management approach which, as a project management trainer too, is probably why it feels so familiar.
Whatever the project, I keep ITIL Practitioner in my back pocket: whether it’s an IT service management project or a broader business challenge.