I can't get excited about ITIL4

I just can't get excited about ITIL4. No, you didn't miss any blog posts: I haven't written anything yet.

I suppose I should be excited and writing about ITIL4. Axelos are certainly being provocative enough by making exams mandatory with every ITIL training course, which can only be interpreted as a money squeeze for them and their monopoly partner Peoplecert. I guess Axelos know that ITIL is a dying asset which they need to squeeze as hard as they can as fast as they can.

People are in fact asking why I'm not, so let's be clear there's no conspiracy here: I just can't be arsed. I haven't written anything because I've barely looked at it.

ITIL4 is a welcome update: it has finally embraced agile principles. The great work people have done to hammer those ideas into ITIL now that Agile is 20 years old is impressive. ITIL could never make up its mind [that's a post from 2008!] whether it was leading edge or best practice - you can't be both because "best" or even "good" has to be proven. The answer is pretty clear now: ITIL is a lagging indicator. We like to work at the forefront, so that's one reason for my ennui.

ITIL isn't going away but it is business-as-usual. It's a thing we need, it's good. It's part of mainstream IT work: it has gone over the youthful hype curve and settled down to quiet middle age. Nobody cares as much any more: it's basic hygiene. (Don't @me about how badly the world does it and how far they have to go. I'm talking about attitudes not current state). So that's off-putting for a training consultancy.

I could be on a personal vendetta after Axelos screwed me around about putting Standard+Case into ITIL4, but I don't care about that either. [I'm even making a tiny contributuon to one of the subsequent books.]
S+C is mentioned in another body of knowledge VeriSM which is more visionary, and my book Basic Service Management is one of the foundation stones of VeriSM, so Axelos can go... but I'm not engaged enough to be mad. It's not a big deal.

ITIL was always a hard sell for "transformation" of work: there's lots of stick and not a lot of carrot. The reasons for this are because it's mostly done to people rather than by them, it disempowers knowledge workers and gives free rein to bureaucrats, and it's not a very effective transformational system. I've been immersed in DevOps ever since 2009 [first as a rock-thrower then as a believer] and I have been working heavily in it for the last four years. I have seen how much more effective its ideas are in making people happier and work more effective. Now, with my lovely wife and partner, I have been working for the last year and a half doing very exciting things with business agility in Vietnam (entirely outside IT), and lately bringing those ideas[pdf] to New Zealand (mostly still within IT). We are having powerful impacts on the lives of people and the results of organisations, which I have to say is much more rewarding than the hard slog of trying to hammer service management into unwilling staff in dysfunctional organisations, which always felt very much like shovelling out the stables.

That's the reason I haven't posted. There are much more impactful and relevant (and exciting) things happening in IT than ITIL.

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