ITIL and Process DevelopmentGood ITIL practices start by clearly defining process, writes ITSM Watch guest columnist Mike Tainter of Forsythe.
While ITIL best-practices are defined in detail, the piece that is missing is how to apply the best-practices. And yet the path to effective adoption of ITIL is not just through the use of the best-practices, but by applying sound process development techniques.
Yet, ITIL is all about designing the layout of the activities in an easy to follow process. No small task considering that IT departments are busy managing the infrastructure that supports the business 24/7.
Per the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute's (SEI) capability maturity model (CMM), a good process is one in which the following criteria exist (this also equates to the processs maturity):
Listed above are only the first three of the five maturity levels; these are the targets for creation of a process from definition through documentation. To achieve Level 4 (Managed), organizations must institute a governance structure to manage the process to ensure it is producing the desired result.
To achieve Level 5 (Optimized), the process must be reviewed and validated by external sources to determine if it is meeting desired goals and identifying areas for improvement. Even though CMM defines the maturity for the processes, it does not delineate the components of a good process model.
Taking process development a little further, a mature process model must contain the following:
A mature process model also contains procedures and work instructions for every process. Procedures are the activities that must be performed to enable each process. They also define the role(s) responsible for performing those activities.