Ask your vendor what they mean by ITIL compliant

Some time next year the IT Skeptic will do a full list of ITIL compliance criteria, but for now check out this article for some ITIL questions to make your prospective vendor squirm

SLAs undermine business alignment

With the exception of outsourcers, IT departments are not a distinct business inside the business, and they should not behave like one. We are all on the same team, so we should be working in a spirit of trust and collaboration. SLAs introduce an adversarial formal negotiated relationship which is inappropriate when two units of the same organisation interact.

ITIL reduces costs by up to 48% - another crap factoid to beware of

Time and again the analysts come up with these numbers using totally unscientific methods and before you know it they are gospel and popping up everywhere like bird flu. I'm not sure who's worse; the snake oil salesmen who invent them or the gullible twerps who repeat them.

ooh I got all excited when I read this question in an article on InfoWorld:

1. What can I do with ITIL that I couldn’t do before?

And the answer is......

The madness mounts. When will the CMDB reality check come?

Dennis Deane, head of program management in Europe for Scottsdale, Ariz.-based delivery company DHL...
"In order to really implement a good CMDB, the team has to get granular with the information," Deane says. This translates into working with individual CIs and entering them manually into the database. "Every laptop and registration number has to get into the program somehow."

a more skeptical attitude toward IT is the right one to have

Nicholas Carr touched off a heated debate on the role of information technology in business with the publication in 2003 of his Harvard Business Review article "IT Doesn't Matter" ...
"In this era, a more skeptical attitude toward IT is the right one to have"

How to contribute to ITIL

You have several easy options to choose from:
1. Be an author. Wait 3-5 years for the next ITIL Refresh. Tender for one of the books. Be one of about a dozen people worldwide to win a tender. Devote a year of your life to writing a book.
2. Know an author. Get networking now: you have 3-5 years to guess who the next ones will be and get into their professional circle. Then persuade them your idea is better than theirs.
3. Contact OGC to tell them you have some content to contribute. There is no documented process to do this, not any advertised contact point, but OGC are British government bureaucrats so you should find them helpful and communicative if you just send stuff off to any old address you can find. Once you have their attention, they will put you in touch with the next authors. See 2 above.
4. Forget it.

ITIL is culturally biased by its narrow and closed contributor base

ITIL is written by “service suppliers, training companies and academia in Britain, Canada and the USA” who know IT operations and cater to corporate business. That is a narrow authorship base for a framework that sets out to document IT Service Management. No authors from Asia. No authors from government, health, engineering, non-profits, or small business. And zero mechanisms for the disenfranchised to contribute. So how does anyone know it is universal best practice, and is it best for those other users?

ITIL is far from comprehensive

ITIL certainly does not cover all aspects of "IT Infrastructure" as the name suggests. It does not even cover all aspects of an IT Service Management Library, which would be a more accurate name for its scope. For a framework that pays much lip service to the Deming Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, it is light on with any part of that cycle except "Do".

ITIL in Asia

The IT Skeptic is writing for ITSMWatch now. A recent discussion in that forum led to the IT Skeptic expressing opinions on ITIL in Asia:

The Craftsman and the Bazaar

Many of you will be familiar with that seminal work The Cathedral and the Bazaar, a manifesto of the open source movement. If not, I recommend you read it. Today I want to talk about a different perspective: the Craftsman and the Bazaar.

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