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Incident Closure
As most of you know, particularly those who have attended my ITIL® training courses and those who subscribe to my online ITIL e-Courses, I am 100% on the side of IT, fully committed to improving IT service management (ITSM) practices, and always aim to break the text book down into real life and practical relevancy.

I say this because whilst I fully understand the daily challenges ITSM is faced with, I equally share the frustrations the business has with IT and why in some cases, the business has a low opinion of IT and as a result struggle to engage with IT.

For example, the business invests thousands of pounds in ITSM system tools with a view of providing essential management information. In fact, the purpose of ensuring correct closure of an incident record is to provide full historical information for those who need to reference it. So, when we look at these completed records (closed tickets), this is the level of management information often provided:

A ticket that subsequently engaged several discussions and analysis to resolve, the information the ticket provides at closure is; All sorted! User is happy… This ticket provides pretty much useless management information. An excel spreadsheet or a handwritten post it' can do that.
A ticket was opened as a paper jam which was correct, and it was closed as a paper jam. The reality; it was a network error that caused the paper jam? But as highlighted, this ticket was never corrected during the closure procedure? This ticket provides inaccurate and misleading management information. Could management conclude from this that we have faulty printers?
A ticket was opened as a priority 4 (P4) however, it was later moved to a P2 because it transpired the original priority mapping was incorrect. The ticket was closed as opened, as a P4. This ticket not only shows inaccurate management information but the scenario will recur time and time again because of no closure procedure.
Closure reports demonstrate to management that the incident closure target was achieved, the team are satisfied with this performance and credited for this achievement. Looking at these incidents, these closures relate to incidents which reported that the clock was wrong on user desktops. Well this performance clearly saved the day, the business would have never survived without such a performance! This is a classic error where targets and goals are purely intrinsic and not contextual.
Shall I go on? Trust me, I could consume pages with different examples.

You are welcome to contact me directly at: twilson@itsmassist.com and I am always more than happy arranging to meet and discuss (or chat remotely) opportunities to improve ITSM within the workplace.

Also, you may know, ITIL® 4 is set for release in February 2019, and we have an unbelievable offer based on our MP4-video (trainer presented) online ITIL e-Courses, for both company organisations and individual students, we boast a 100% pass rate with our ITIL 3 e-Course. The reason why this offer is so exceptional aside from price, it is because of the content quality and accuracy and even though I say it myself, I present these in MP4-video format, with knowledge tests and mock exams. You can set your own learning pace, pause and rewind and you know that every course is as consistent as the previous one. Check us out at: www.itsmassist.com

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IT Service Management: Missed Opportunities for Improvement

Following a previous post that I published recently, let’s dig deeper to understand the difference between old school thinking and the modern world today.

In today’s modern business world communication and knowledge sharing is dynamic and accessible on demand. Waiting for the right moment to ask someone, or to be expected to root out a 20-page document or worse still, waiting in hope to be put on the next scheduled training course is simply not enough today.

If we are to encourage and promote that people engage, bring new ideas to the table and identify improved ways of working then we must adopt a training and education framework that is always open for business. This means encouraging people to naturally and dynamically progress through knowledge chains and/or certification schemes accordingly. To achieve this however, we must make such a facility available and accessible without limitation or restriction.

Unfortunately, the old school of thinking only allow those people with the right hierarchical status to progress through such knowledge chains and certification schemes with a view of passing this knowledge down, but how often is this knowledge ever passed down, truthfully, rarely! This is because these people are either are too busy to communicate this or simply do not fully understand it themselves. So, what we end up with is people with the knowledge and certifications who are not actively doing the job, and people without the knowledge and certifications who are doing the job.

How is it that the manager of the service desk accurately explains the procedure for closing an incident ticket, and the agent closing the ticket not only doesn’t know this procedure, but does not appreciate the value in following this procedure? Well, clearly one has been privileged with being given access to such training and education and the other has not. The key is not just following a procedure but understanding its value. Understanding the value makes it more open for improvement. In fact, if something doesn’t directly or indirectly demonstrate value then stop doing it.

The new school of thinking allow people who are self-motivated to naturally progress through knowledge chains and certification schemes without restriction, and these self-starters do this at a pace others are unable to compete with. So, in simple terms, progression is no longer based on who is next in line!

We, the consumer expect fast, accurate and efficient service at the most competitive price, so how are these demands met? The answer lies in continual improvement enabled through people who are self-motivated.

The cost and logistics of placing people on IT service management (ITSM) classroom courses is a massive barrier for many companies, which end up becoming one off’ events. Not with ITSM Assist, using our online e-Course resource to build your very own (in-house) branded ITSM training and educational framework offers the perfect solution for both ITIL® certification and customised in-house training and knowledge sharing - this is partly reflected in our ITIL 4 Business Path.

To compete in todays modern business world training and education should no longer be open to just the privileged, it needs to be available and accessible on demand to everyone who engages and above all, delivered in a cost-efficient manner.

If you want to find out more just give me a shout, I can be contacted directly at: twilson@itsmassist.com or visit: www.itsmassist.com


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ITSM Policies and Processes

Why is it that time and effort is consumed with designing policies and equally with designing processes, and the way we do things on a daily basis is nothing like? In fact, the way in which we do things can be in breach daily.

There are typically 3 reasons for this:

What we refer to as a process is not a process, it is in fact a sub policy underpinning the over-arching policy.
The process does not directly map to the policy, there is a total disconnect.
Poor and unacceptable communication. Communication is not one-way, and neither is it a one-off event. Communication is two-way based on continuous feedback.
Some people think a policy ensures protection, compliance, quality and value, well this is incorrect. It is how and the way we do things that ensure protection, compliance, quality and value. A policy should provide detailed guidance to achieve the core principles and goals of an organisation, whereas a process is the vehicle to execute the policy.

Whilst a policy is an important starting point, policies talk the talk', policies describe intention, however it is processes that walk the walk. A policy describes expected behaviour, whereas a process demonstrates how we actually do behave.

Communication takes on many forms, in my opinion, communication is the root of the issue. Why are we not introducing our own in-house (branded) educational framework? I am not referring to classroom training, I am referring to on demand instant access to guidance supporting the policies and processes with continuous feedback. If you want to establish how this can be achieved give me a shout. I can be contacted directly at: twilson@itsmassist.com
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ITIL Certification Cost & Benefit Analysis
What is ITIL? ITIL refers to a detailed set of practices for managing IT service management , commonly known as ITSM. These practices apply to any type or size of organization that wants to align IT with severally business strategy, while delivering value a...

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