As a Software Developer, I did not have a complete view of how my piece of code can provide value to its users. After every successful sprint, I move on to develop new functionality. I always thought that software development takes up the majority of activities in developing and operating software products.
When I moved to IT Service Delivery, it donned on me that creating the software is just a piece of a bigger whole of IT Service Management. Creating software is just the beginning, operating and maintaining the software is a different challenge altogether. A software product may have great and cool functionality but may fail on its promise when deployed to its intended environment. All sorts of problems may occur when deploying software into production,
- The system slows down, it does not have enough capacity to service the volume of transactions
- The application does not function properly for certain users due to incompatibilities with other systems such as the user’s browser
- Fails to connect to other 3rd party services
- Previous functionality fails after an update
- Long downtime to fix an issue
- Attackers are exploiting vulnerabilities in the system
- Downtime, downtime and more downtime
To avoid sleepless release and deployment milestone dates, the team (the organization) should establish the processes and the discipline for effective IT Service Delivery. Benchmarking with industry practices is a great start. I included in this article a gap analysis checklist that I use whenever our company plans to engage in IT services or for auditing existing services. It is very useful for assessing the risks of the engagement and to identify opportunities to increase our scope of work.
How to use this checklist:
- When you already have an existing service, start with Incident Management, Release Management, and Change Control processes. These are critical processes for your IT Operation.
- Work on Risk Management, Service Continuity Management, and Monitoring and Event Management.
- Then continue with the processes where your team or organization is weak at.
Evaluate each process, identify gaps, and create workable action plans to fill the gap. Always work on those high impact but easy to improve items. This is to build momentum on your journey towards excellent IT Service Delivery.
If you need help in assessing your team and coming up with a workable improvement roadmap, please don’t hesitate to contact me – firstname.lastname@example.org
– Agile Pinoy