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The Five Critical Questions to Ask Before You Sign

Feb 26, 2007

David Cannon,Ken Wendle

3. What ITSM solutions do you offer (i.e., design services, management software, education courses)?

Your IT organization is measured on the quality and costs of the IT services you provide for your company’s business. Can your service provider help you effectively manage the people, processes, and technology that impact IT operations?

4. What experience do you have in implementing ITSM programs for customers?

A service provider experienced in implementing ITSM programs can leverage its deep knowledge in ITIL and not only save you time and money, but put you on the right track to adapt to change. Poorly planned IT processes can undermine an organization’s effectiveness. You may be surprised to know an estimated 80% of unplanned downtime results from people and process issues.

5. Can you provide a holistic solution to ITIL and ITSM?

Certain IT vendors can design and implement ITIL, but not many have the full capability to provide you with a complete solution. An evaluation of your ITIL needs that’s disjointed with the actual implementation may hamper your end-goal of aligning IT services with business needs.

Look for an IT vendor that can provide you with a comprehensive solution to help you design, build, manage, and achieve a first-rate IT service operation.

As any CIO in a multi-sourced organization can tell you, active governance is vital to running a smooth-operating IT engine. If the goal of outsourcing is to allow you to focus on your core business, then having a solid governance structure in place is a key step toward achieving that goal.

David Cannon is the IT Service Management principal at HP Education Services and co-author of the Service Operation book in ITIL version 3.

Ken Wendle is client engagement manager for HP Education Services, and founding member and former president of itSMF USA.