Transition, collaboration & cute penguin videos – it’s the itSMF UK 2015 Conference! Part 2

Day 2

Following our coverage of Day 1 of the itSMF UK conference, we’re back as promised with Day 2!

Selling Problem Management – the views of the ITSMF UK Special Interest Group Barry Corless, Global Knowledge

First up on day 2 was Barry’s session on the itSMF UK Problem Management SIG whitepaper on selling Problem Management.

Barry’s session was focused on the output of the white paper, essentially, Problem Management needs a bit of a rebrand. It’s not a dumping ground for anything and everything, it’s a service driven follow up to reduce recurring Incidents.

Barry continued by asking the audience how they managed their Problem Management effectiveness stating “your measurements must have credibility”.

One really useful piece of advice I took away from the session was this: “go out and actually talk to your customers because not everyone fills out the customer satisfaction survey.” I loved Barry’s advice on promoting Problem Management: “selling PM is a balancing act. Crow about it too much and something is guaranteed to fall over the next day.” I’ve been there Barry *remembers own bitter experience*.

Barry finished up on a magical note: “our magic wand is to reduce risk and empower people with the skills to solve things themselves.” Brilliant point plus it made me think of this:

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Incident & Problem – Do we Really Need Both? Peter Hubbard, Pink Elephant EMEA

Next up was Peter Hubbard from Pink Elephant. His first act? Naming and shaming me as a partner in crime at previous itSMF conferences – thanks for that Pete!

Pete’s session was on Incident and Problem Management, how to get it right and what works in the real world. Pete opened by sharing what one customer said to him when he asked if they did Problem Management: “no, because we’re much too busy fixing Incidents.”

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It was an absolutely brilliant session and if you’re interested in Problem Management then I’d highly recommend having a look at Pete’s slides when they are published on the itSMF UK website. The highlight for me was when he talked about the ITIL books:

“ITIL says we should be on our Problems like a cheetah on a trampoline”

Just think about that for a minute (plus send me any funny pics you have of cheetahs on trampolines, I couldn’t find any).

Pete talked about how important proactive Problem Management is but how hard it is to get the buy in for it. When he asked how many people in the room did proactive Problem Management, only one hand went up.

Pete went on to reference Rob England’s standard case approach, giving real life examples of how it can reduce pain. He also gets bonus points for the cute cat picture:

The final part of Pete’s presentation focused on how to get support from our higher ups  stating “if you want to get some management fire power behind you, find out what business risks your exec is personally accountable for and see how fixing your Problem records could help.”

Collaboration for Successful Service Acceptance Sue Cater, Atos IT Services (UK) Ltd

After a quick coffee break, Sue Cater was up with her session on driving successful service acceptance. Sue’s session focused on 3 key areas:

  1. Operational Acceptance Criteria
  2. OLAs
  3. Service Acceptance Boards

Sue explained Operational Acceptance Criteria or OAC “lubricate the interface between techies and the business”. Sue went on to give some practical guidance on OACs reminding us that “they’re not build tasks. They’re at a much higher level”. Sue explained the benefits of OACs, “having OACs improved customer satisfaction levels. The cricket bat in my handbag had nothing to do with it!” We believe you Sue!

Sue continued on how using OLAs at an account level rather than a service level was much more efficient in her environment. By having one OLA per account, you can have all the individual (quirks) features of each service documented without the duplication. One of my favourite things about Sue’s presentation (apart from the cricket bat) was her guidance on putting together sensible OLAs. As the lady herself put it “make sure you have the right information at the right level. No one wants to be faffing about on SharePoint at 3 am trying to find the number for the support team”.

Next up was the Service Acceptance Board or SAB. As Sue said on the day “the golden rule is that there should be no surprises at go live.” Sue set out the rules for the SAB. It meets between 2 – 4 weeks before project go live and is attended by the project manager, the service manager and representatives from the business. The idea is to look at the service, ensure it’s hitting its previously agreed OACs and OLAs so that the people in attendance can make an informed decision at the Go / No Go point, just before go live.

Awesome session Sue and well done for styling it out despite loosing your voice on the morning. If I’d lost my voice the morning I was due to present I would have been simultaneously having kittens and tipping vodka into my coffee so kudos!

The Future of Work & Importance of Collaboration Technologies Patrick Bolger, Hornbill

The final session of the morning was Pat Bolger from Hornbill. 

Pat opened with this: “more functionality will not solve all your problems”. I really agree – how many times have we seen someone trying to fix business problems by chucking an expensive tool at it? It never ends well, believe me.

Pat went on to explain why social media had changed the game “one bad customer experience, and it’s out there”.

Pat talked about the benefits of collaboration “it gives people a voice. A study carried out by McKinsey found that collaboration can raise a person’s skills by 25%”

Pat outlined some top strategies for making it stick in the workplace. “Define the purpose of collaboration and make it sticky by using it to track productivity. One example of this is to link in with the timesheet system.” Pat continued by saying, “collaboration needs to be a destination application, people will go to it to get their stuff done.”

Pat finished on a really strong point – it’s better when we work together. You can view the video here (NB, no cute baby penguins were harmed during the filming of the video.)

After a long lunch, there was a quick interactive plenary and I do mean quick. Quite a few of the delegates were saying that they would have prefered a shorter lunch break and a longer Q&A session – maybe that’s something to take away for next year? People were definitely beginning to get a bit tired at this point:

For me, the highlights of the discussion were Jame’s take on DevOps “DevOps is a philosophy on delivering value to the business. ITSM and DevOps will compliment each other”and Caroline’s stance on Shadow IT “cockroach IT more like, only one licence but load of users on it”. Former itSMF UK Chair John Windebank reminded us to think of our customers “remember every Incident is a failure of our IT Services.”

Conference Closing Keynote Manchester – Devolution and Impact on ICT Bob Brown, CIO, Manchester City Council

The closing keynote, Bob Brown from Manchester City Council on how they’re making it work.

Bob gets bonus points for being the first speaker to mention the C word. Minds out of the gutter people! I’m talking about Christmas as apparently Father Christmas (or Santy for our Irish readers) is currently sat on top of their city hall:

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Bob’s mantra is “Manchester City Council services are life and death so we live and breathe our support for those services.” One memorable example was the crematorium as a member of Bob’s team said, “lose the IT services behind that and the bodies will literally build up”.

The theme of Bob’s speech was the customer experience. Bob’s team are careful to spend time with their customers with Bob personally manning their version of the genius bar once a month.

Before we knew it, it was 4 o’clock and it was time for Barclay to wrap things up. Thank you to the itSMF UK for inviting us, great conference and we’ll be back next year. Roll on #ITSM16!

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itSMF UK Conference 2015 Preview

Roll up, roll up! It’s one of the biggest events in the UK ITSM calendar next week as it’s the annual itSMF UK conference! We are proud to be media partners so here is a preview of coming attractions!

 

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There are 4 tracks for the conference:

Track 1: Change & Collaboration

Track 2: Cloud & Service Integration

Track 3: People & Skills

Track 4: Service Culture & Customer Experience

 

Introducing this year’s keynote speaker: Simon Wheatcroft

The event will be opened by Simon Wheatcroft, who will start this year’s programme with his inspirational story. Simon lost his sight at 17 and began a journey of adapting technology to achieve the impossible. Through the aid of a smartphone and the feeling underfoot Simon learnt to run solo outdoors and ran his first ever race 7 months later – a 100 mile road race.

Simon Wheatcroft
Simon Wheatcroft


Event Summary

WHATitSMF UK Conference and Exhibition 2015 (ITSM15)

WHERESofitel, Heathrow

WHENMonday 23rd – Tuesday 24th November 2015

HOW TO BOOK: Click Here

Webinar: How IT Service Management Delivers Business Efficiency

Join our own Vawns Murphy and hear from Independent Market leaders about what businesses are adopting for IT Service Management and Business Process efficiency.

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On 19th November 2015, Cased Dimensions, Microsoft and Vawns Murphy from the ITSM Review will deliver a webinar to outline how large and small businesses are aligning Business Process with IT Service Management Process to enable Business Agility, Automation and Business Productivity.

People are any business’s most expensive asset. Attend this short webinar to find our how you can empower your team to be more productive. Business productivity benefits are enabled by applying industry best practice process frameworks through Microsoft Collaborative technologies.

Additional financial and agility benefits can be driven through virtualisation of your IT Platform.


WHO:
Cased Dimensions, Microsoft & ITSM Review

WHEN:  Thursday 19th November 2015, 1.00pm – 2.00pm GMT

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: IT Decision Makers, Service Desk Managers, IT Directors

REGISTER: http://www.caseddimensions.com/microsoft-enterprise-itsm-webinar/

 

SIAM for beginners

6196173097_a18978e6bc_zAhead of our joint workshop with the BCS on the 17th of November we speak with 2 experts to discuss all things SIAM, people & culture.

Podcast Guests:

Dave Kelsey, BCS 

Steve Morgan, Syniad Solutions Ltd

Podcast Topics:

  • SIAM Skills Workshop
  • What is SIAM?
  • The interest in SIAM
  • When is SIAM right for me?
  • Culture change
  • What skills do I need for SIAM?
  • What’s available in the market?
  • Are service providers adapting to the demand for SIAM?

Find out more about the workshop here or via the BCS event page.

ITAM Review and ITSM Review Feeds

 

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SIAM for Complete Beginners

For those of you who read this website regularly, you’ll know that we are running a joint SIAM workshop with the BCS later on this month. It’s already fully booked and we’re planning further events in 2016. Interest in SIAM has definitely taken off in the last year or so but for every enthusiast there’s also the person asking “what is SIAM and why should I find out more?”

Basic Principles:

Service Integration and Management (SIAM) is a framework for managing multiple suppliers of information technology services and integrating them to provide a single business-facing IT organisation. In other words, SIAM takes this:

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and gives you this:

 

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SIAM is an adaptation of ITIL that focuses on the delivery of key services by multiple suppliers in a way that appears seamless to the rest of the business. So far, so good – not too scary right?

Why do I need it?

Lets face it, when we work in IT we’re at the sharp end of every crisis; new product launch from Apple, security threat, social media trend or latest patch from Microsoft . Throw into the equation changing business requirements and the growing senior management appetite for big data, DevOps, TOGAF etc and fun is being had. Add in the opportunities (or to steal a phrase from a former colleague probertunities) that can arise from multi sourcing and working with multiple suppliers and partners and you’ve got a party. I’ve been living and breathing ITIL as my day job for 15 years and by using it as a framework for running your IT department, that’s a great start. If however, you’re using ITIL and it feels like you’re herding cats (or if you’re really unlucky, grumpy toddlers) then you may want to look at SIAM.

What does Service Integration Look Like?

The starting point for SIAM is the creation of a SIAM team. This team acts as the single point of accountability and is an effective way of minimizing or mitigating potential multisourcing issues, and optimising the composite IT organisation.

A SIAM function, department or team will typically:

  • Manage the multiple suppliers to give the optimal mix of flexibility, innovation, standard and consistent service.
  • Be accountable for the integrated services that are being delivered back to the business.
  • Specify IT service management processes and procedures to be deployed across the enterprise and ensure they are followed.
  • Act as the central point of control between IT demand and IT supply.
  • Play a pivotal coordinating role in all service management processes.

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What are the benefits of using SIAM?

If you’re starting to feel the stress of managing your IT portfolio then using SIAM could bring the following benefits:

  • A single point of contact, ownership & control for IT Services.
  • Clearly defined roles & responsibilities (preferably nailed down in RACI charts)
  • Optimised cost of services
  • Streamlined management of IT services
  • Increased customer satisfaction
  • Consistently applied processes
  • A more transparent IT landscape

Where can I go to find out more:

There’s loads of useful information out there; here are our top picks for learning more about SIAM:

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