ITIL provides numerous best practices and guidelines that help organizations effectively configure, establish, and manage boundaries. In this blog, we will discuss three ways that ITIL promotes the definition of boundaries.
First, ITIL encourages organizations to think about their IT in the form of services. Services are a way of describing a boundary between the enjoyment of the value produced by a service, and the technical aspects of providing a service that are done by a service provider. An effective service clearly defines how a customer engages with a service; what the costs are, if any; and how the service is measured, amongst other aspects. The boundary of a service describes how a customer interacts with that service in terms of inputs provided, as well as the outputs the customer receives from the service.
Second, ITIL promotes the definition and assignment of clear roles. Roles are ways of allocating various activities, responsibilities, and accountabilities in organizations. For example, the role of process manager involves responsibility for the operational management of a specific process. In the absence of such a role, organizations can become inefficient when customers and others in the organization don’t know who is doing what, or who is supposed to be doing which activities. ITIL promotes using the RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed) tools as a way of allocating how specific roles are involved in various important activities in an organization, resulting in clearly defined boundaries with respect to what a role does and does not do.
Third, ITIL encourages organizations to view services from a standpoint of return on investment in the form of a service portfolio. A service portfolio contains three components: the service pipeline, the service catalog, and retired services. Each of these components has separate boundaries, which respectively define the future, present, and past of services in the organization. A service portfolio can be thought of as a way of putting a boundary around what an organization has under development, what it currently offers to its customers and users, and what services were once offered but have become obsolete. The boundary of a service portfolio is important so that organizations focus their limited resources on those services that provide the most acceptable return on investment, while continuing to invest in the development of new services such that the organization remains aligned with overall enterprise goals and objectives.
This is an excerpt from the Global Knowledge white paper, The ABCs of ITIL.