You don't need a weatherman... watch everyone scramble aboard ISO20000

"You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows" [Bob Dylan]. Watch all the key ITIL players rapidly embracing ISO20000. When ITIL is just one more IT-geek thing we reminisce about to prove how long we've been around, you read the prediction of its demise here first.

EXIN's life-after-ITIL shelter is their Service Quality Management Foundation. Hard to blame them since OGC uncoupled them from the ITIL Foundations gravy train. "It is early days of course, ... during this development stage". Very early. There's nothing much yet except a new course announced.

If you missed it, here's itSMF's bid to survive the ISO20000 storm: the ISO/IEC 20000 Certification web site. Two things to note here:

First: "The" certification web site. Note how the site is worded to give one the impression that this is the master/only/official home of ISO20000 certification. itSMF have set up an independent certification scheme for ISO20000. This is not the ISO's certification scheme. As far as I can ascertain there is no exclusive designation of itSMF as "the" certifier, and any other body can gain accreditation from a standards body to set up a parallel scheme, nationally or worldwide (whether any other body has the respect, IP and reach to do so is another discussion). Fun game: check out the wording on this site to find the hints of this (and the efforts to avoid mentioning this).

Second, note that the official name is ISO/IEC 20000. Check out how many sites bother with this cumbersome correctness. EXIN don't. Wonder how long before the anally-retentive standards folk set them straight: "Stop calling him Bert. His name is Engelbert".

I resisted the temptation (until now) to refer to rodents and unseaworthy vessels, but remember: when ITIL is just one more IT-geek thing we reminisce about to prove how long we've been around, you read the prediction of its demise here first


Why do we need a flawed standard anyway?

Just a thought - why was the ISO 9000 standard not extended to include the simplistic service provider concepts instead of offering a version in crayon within ISO 200000. Can anyone dispel the rumor that the failure to launch ITIL V3 in April 2005 (as originally "scheduled") led to those involved having to fast-track the woeful BS15000 into ISO 20000 before the BS 150000 'standard' lapsed at the end of 2005? Are we to repeat the long uphill struggle of repairing ISO 20000 as happened to BS7799 and ISO 17799.... please spare us. There is actually a standards development process ISO prefers folks use and the fast-track method seems so much like the 'emergency change' we all despise publicly, but are ok with when we are not directly affected.

Bad timing

I have been a long term supporter of BS15000, but my recent experiences are revealing just how flawed ISO 20000 is despite its long gestation period. The conclusion I've come to is it that early adoptors, who were mostly already using ITIl, CMMI and ISO9000 have found it relatively easy to apply, and have gained added value from it by being forced to fill some of the gaps between processes.

Where it all falls apart is with clients who are attempting to use ISO20000, who discover just how ambuiguous it is. Some of those ambiguities seem to be carried over into what I've seen of ITIL3. I can't help feeling it would have been better to have introduced ISO20000, allowed it to go through at least one revision cycle based on the experiences of "ordinary" users to iron out the bugs, and only then to have updated ITIL3. Revising ITIL3 at the same time that the industry is only just getting to grips with ISO20000 seems rather foolish in retrospect.

great gossip :-) I too

great gossip :-) I too heard something similar

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