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Encyclopedia > IT Service Management

IT Service Management (ITSM) is a discipline for managing large-scale information technology (IT) systems, philosophically centered on the customer's perspective of IT's contribution to the business. ITSM stands in deliberate contrast to technology-centered approaches to IT management and business interaction. The following represents a characteristic statement from the ITSM literature: Information technology (IT), as defined by the Information Technology Association of America (ITAA)is: the study, design, development, implementation, support or management of computer-based information systems, particularly software applications and computer hardware. ...

Providers of IT services can no longer afford to focus on technology and their internal organization, they now have to consider the quality of the services they provide and focus on the relationship with customers.[1]

No one author, organization, or vendor owns the term "IT Service Management" and the origins of the phrase are unclear.


ITSM is process-focused and in this sense has ties and common interests with the process improvement movement (e.g. TQM, Six Sigma, Business Process Management, CMMI). The discipline is not concerned with the details of how to use a particular vendor's product, or necessarily with the technical details of the systems under management. Instead, it focuses on providing a framework to structure IT-related activities and the interactions of IT technical personnel with business customers and users. ... The often-used six sigma symbol. ... The term Business Process Management (or BPM) refers to activities performed by businesses to improve their processes. ... The Capability Maturity Model (CMM) is a method for evaluating the maturity of software development organisations on a scale of 1 to 5. ...


ITSM is generally concerned with "back office" information technology for enterprises (businesses and organizations), not technology that is a company's primary product. For example, the process of writing computer software for sale, or designing a microprocessor is not the focus of the discipline, but the computer systems used by marketing and business development staff in software and hardware companies would be. Many non-technology companies, such as those in the financial, retail, and travel industries, have significant information technology systems which are not exposed to customers. A back office is a part of most corporations where tasks dedicated to running the company itself take place. ... Historically, the term business referred to activities or interests. ... An organization or organisation (read more about -ize vs -ise) is a formal group of people with one or more shared goals. ... Software, or program, enables a computer to perform specific tasks, as opposed to the physical components of the system (hardware). ... A microprocessor (sometimes abbreviated µP) is a programmable digital electronic component that incorporates the functions of a central processing unit (CPU) on a single semiconducting integrated circuit (IC). ...


In this respect, ITSM can be seen as analogous to an enterprise resource planning (ERP) discipline for IT - although its historical roots in IT operations may limit its applicability across other major IT activities, such as IT portfolio management and software engineering. Enterprise Resource Planning systems (ERPs) integrate (or attempt to integrate) all data and processes of an organization into a unified system. ... IT portfolio management is the application of systematic management to large classes of items managed by enterprise information technology (IT) capabilities. ... Software engineering is the application of a systematic, disciplined, quantifiable approach to the development, operation, and maintenance of software. ...

Contents

Context

IT Service Management is frequently cited as a primary enabler of IT Governance objectives. The idea of IT Governance is that all members of an organization (including the board of Directors) should share both the planning of, and responsibility for, IT systems. ...


The concept of "Service" in an IT sense has a distinct operational connotation, but it would be incorrect to then assume that IT Service Management is only about IT operations. However, it does not encompass all of IT practice, and this can be a controversial matter.


It does not typically include project management or program management concerns. In the UK for example, ITIL is often paired with the Prince2 project methodology and SSADM for systems development. Project management is the discipline of organizing and managing resources in such a way that these resources deliver all the work required to complete a project within defined scope, time, and cost constraints. ... Program management is the process of managing multiple on going projects. ... PRINCE2, or PRojects IN Controlled Environments, is a project management methodology. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Structured Systems Analysis and Design Methodology. ...


ITSM is related to the field of Management Information Systems (MIS) in scope. However, ITSM has a distinct practitioner point of view, and is more introspective (i.e. IT thinking about the delivery of IT to the business) as opposed to the more academic and outward facing connotation of MIS (IT thinking about the 'information' needs of the business). Management Information Systems (MIS), are information systems, typically computer based, that are used within an organization. ...


IT Service Management in the broader sense overlaps with the discipline of IT portfolio management, especially in the area of IT planning and financial control. IT portfolio management is the application of systematic management to large classes of items managed by enterprise information technology (IT) capabilities. ...


The degree to which software engineering is an ITSM concern is unclear. Certainly, the available ITSM literature has a distinct operational flavor, but also shades into software quality and architectural concerns (especially related to infrastructure, capacity, and operability), while usually steering clear of project management and actual software development. Similarly, the relationship of ITSM to the field of Enterprise Architecture is unclear. Software engineering is the application of a systematic, disciplined, quantifiable approach to the development, operation, and maintenance of software. ... Enterprise architecture is the practice of applying a comprehensive and rigorous method for describing a current and/or future structure and behavior for an organizations processes, information systems, personnel and organizational sub-units, so that they align with the organizations core goals and strategic direction. ...


Frameworks

There are a variety of frameworks and authors contributing to the overall discipline.[2] Frameworks that might be considered to provide examples or instances of ITSM include:

  • The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL)
  • Control Objectives for Information Technology (COBIT)
  • Application Services Library (ASL)
  • Business Information Services Library[3] (BISL)
  • Microsoft Operations Framework (MOF)
  • The Helpdesk Institute (HDI) have produced [4] a support centre focussed approach to Service Management loosely based on ITIL.
  • The Enterprise Computing Institute publishes a set of coordinated books covering general issues of large scale IT management.
  • Butterworth-Heinemann (Computer Weekly Professional Series) also has developed a notable set of publications covering IT Service Management, with particular attention to IT portfolio topics.
  • The eServices Capability Model for Service Providers (eSCM_SP) and eServices Capability Model for Client Organizations (eSCM-CL) from the ITSqc for Sourcing Management

There are also a variety of proprietary approaches available from IT service providers, consultants, and research firms. The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) is a framework of best practice approaches intended to facilitate the delivery of high quality information technology (IT) services. ... The Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT) is a set of best practices (framework) for information (IT) management created by the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), and the IT Governance Institute (ITGI) in 1992. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Microsoft Operations Framework (MOF) provides operational guidance that enables organizations to achieve mission-critical system reliability, availability, supportability, and manageability of Microsoft products and technologies. ... The eSourcing Capability Model for Service Providers (eSCM-SP) is a framework developed by ITSqc at Carnegie Mellon University. ... The eServices Capability Model for Client Organizations (eSCM-CL) is intented to those organizations who procure or source IT-enabled services, delegate one or more of their information technology intensive business activities to a service provider, or to those who whish to asses their sourcing capabilities. ... The IT Services Qualification Center (ITsqc) is a multidisciplinary group of researchers, practitioners, and organizations that addresses the needs of IT-enabled service providers and their clients operated by Carnegie Mellon University, with offices in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ...


Professional organizations

There is an international, chapter-based professional association, the IT Service Management Forum (ITSMF), which has a semi-official relationship with ITIL and the ITSM audit standard ISO/IEC 20000. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... ISO 20000 is the First International Standard for IT Service Management. ...


Information Technology Infrastructure Library

IT Service Management is often equated with the Information Technology Infrastructure Library, (ITIL), an official publication of the Office of Government Commerce in the United Kingdom. However, while a version of ITSM is a component of ITIL, ITIL also covers a number of related but distinct disciplines and the two are not synonymous. The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) is a framework of best practice approaches intended to facilitate the delivery of high quality information technology (IT) services. ... The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) is a framework of best practice approaches intended to facilitate the delivery of high quality information technology (IT) services. ... The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) is an organization in the government of the United Kingdom. ...


The "Service Management" section of ITIL is made up of eleven different disciplines, split into two sections, Service Support and Service Delivery. This use of the term "Service Management" is how many in the world interpret ITSM, but again, there are other frameworks, and conversely, the entire ITIL library might be seen as IT Service Management in a larger sense.


Other frameworks and concern with the overhead

Analogous to debates in software engineering between agile and prescriptive methods, there is debate between lightweight versus heavyweight approaches to IT service management. Lighter weight ITSM approaches include: Agile software development is a conceptual framework for undertaking software engineering projects. ...

  • ITIL Small-scale Implementation[5] colloquially called “ITIL Lite” is an official part of the ITIL framework.
  • FITS was developed for UK schools. It is a simplification of ITIL.
  • Core Practice (CoPr or “copper”) calls for limiting Best Practice to areas where there is a business case for it, and in other areas just do the minimum necessary, i.e. CoPr.

Governance and audit

Several benchmarks and assessment criteria have emerged that seek to measure the capability of an organisation and the maturity of its approach to service management. Primarily, these alternatives provide a focus on compliance and measurement and therefore are more aligned with corporate governance than with IT service management per se.

  • ISO/IEC 20000 (and its ancestor BS15000). This standard is not identical in taxonomy to ITIL and includes a number of additional requirements not detailed within ITIL and some differences. But they are the closest thing to an “ITIL assessment standard.”
  • COBIT (or the lighter COBIT Quickstart) is comprehensive and widely embraced. It incorporates IT Service Management within its Control Objectives for Support and Delivery.
  • The IT Service Capability Maturity Model uses the CMM maturity measurement model.

ISO 20000 is the First International Standard for IT Service Management. ... The Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT) is a set of best practices (framework) for information (IT) management created by the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), and the IT Governance Institute (ITGI) in 1992. ... CMM can refer to: Chad Michael Murray, an American actor best known for his role in One Tree Hill Capability Maturity Model Center for Microanalysis of Materials Center for Molecular Modeling Centre for Metaphysics and Mind Certification in Meeting Management Color Management Module Color Matching Method Commander of the Order...

See also

The following is a list of major vendors of IT Service Management solutions: Altiris Management Suite Bladelogic CA Unicenter FrontRange Solutions IBM Tivoli CCMDB LANDesk Management Suite HP OpenView Microsoft Systems Management Server Nagios Novell ZENworks Oracle Enterprise Manager QAI Raritan TeamQuest Performance Software This list is incomplete; you can...

References

  1. ^ IT Service Management Forum (2002). in van Bon, J.: IT Service Management: An Introduction. Van Haren Publishing. ISBN 90-806713-4-7.  Emphasis added.
  2. ^ van Bon, J.(Editor) (2002). The guide to IT service management. Addison Wesley. ISBN 0-201-73792-2. 
  3. ^ Business Information Services Library
  4. ^ Carrie Higday-Kalmanowitz (Editor), Sandra E. Simpson (Editor) (2005). Implementing Service and Support Management Processes. van Haren Publishing. ISBN 90-77212-43-4. 
  5. ^ (2005) ITIL Small Scale Implementation. The Stationery Office. ISBN 0-11-330980-5. 

External links

  • The OGC website
  • IT Service Management Forum
  • IT Service Management Company

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