If you’re looking at the ITIL 4 body of service management best practice guidance and wondering “How will it help me?” or “How will it benefit my organisation?”, then this blog is for you. Because it offers up three of the top benefits of ITIL 4 adoption for three different sets of business stakeholders:
- Service-focused employees (and not just those in IT who employ ITIL 4 for IT service management (ITSM))
- The business colleagues the service-focused employees serve
- The organisation as a whole.
Giving nine benefits in all.
3 top benefits of ITIL 4 for service-focused employees
ITIL 4 provides people with guidance on how best to deliver, manage, and improve their services.
Before ITIL 4, ITIL v3/2011 was focused on ITSM and the optimisation of IT service delivery and support. The new guidance is still available and relevant to IT professionals, but ITIL 4 has moved its focus from ITSM to service management per se. Such that most of the 34 management practices ITIL 4 contains also apply to employees in the other business functions that need to serve and support others. Which, when you look at it, is the majority of corporate business functions – from human resources (HR), through business operations, to external customer service and support teams.
In many ways, the benefits of ITIL 4 to the people working in these other business functions (as well as to IT) are encapsulated in the definition of enterprise service management – “the use of ITSM (or service management) thinking, best practices, and capabilities by other business functions to improve operations, services, experiences, and outcomes”.
So, if you’re a provider of service and support, or someone responsible for a team of providers, then ITIL 4 provides:
- Easy access to service management best practice guidance – from the need for service-based thinking, through the operational “mechanics” that have been sourced from exemplar organisations from around the globe, to the available technology enablement including newer intelligent automation capabilities.
- Optimised ways of working that help to make service and support employees better versions of themselves, with them able to achieve more with less “stress” and to deliver better service experiences to their business colleagues and/or external customers.
- On a more personal level, a portable service management qualification which benefits both their current and future career.
3 top benefits of ITIL 4 for business colleagues
The key premise of ITIL 4, while helping service-and-support employees operationally, is improving the status quo to provide better business outcomes. Part of this is better enabling (business) employees and operations such that, for IT-department use cases, the benefits of technology use are maximised, and IT-related issues are minimised. With similar true for the other business functions that are also employing service management to improve their operations and outcomes.
So, for the employees who are service receivers, the benefits of ITIL 4 and service management manifest in many ways that include:
- Corporate service-and-support capabilities are designed around their needs and expectations – moving the various corporate service providers, whether the IT department or another business function, from a supply-based to a demand-based view.
- Easier access to service and support thanks to a technology-enabled omnichannel approach – with ITIL 4 advocating the need for choice and the importance of the service experience in the variety of engagement mechanisms.
- Receiving consistent service delivery and support experiences that allow them to be more productive as a result – this is no matter the corporate service provider if an enterprise service management strategy is in play.
Ultimately, while the benefits to service-and-support employees and the people they serve are important, the business-level benefits will likely be considered most important to the business stakeholders who make strategic and financially based decisions. Even though improving employee productivity will positively impact business operations and outcomes.
Therefore, three of the top benefits of ITIL 4 adoption from a business perspective are:
- More efficient service delivery and support operations – for IT and potentially other business functions – saving money and creating competitive advantage through technology use or whatever the relevant business functions are focused on, e.g. people, procurement, or marketing.
- The service-based blending of corporate personnel, processes, technology, and third-party services – both via technology enablement and enterprise service management adoption – which ultimately provides superior customer experiences and outcomes. Adding a quality-based dimension to that of efficiency.
- A more motivated and productive workforce – caused by both better employee enablement and the reduction of friction – and this feeds back into the previous two benefits in a virtuous circle. Reinforcing the ethos of continual improvement in ITIL 4.