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Start ITIL® Implementation at the Service Desk

Even though ITIL® can produce good results not only for IT but also for the entire organization, making the changes requires a big commitment. One great way to sell ITIL to skeptical co-workers is to start implementation at the Service Desk. This strategy works for a few different reasons:

  • Everyone calls the Service Desk. The Service Desk is the main way that employees see IT in action. Improving service at that touch point can win widespread support for ITIL.
  • Employees become customers. The workflow of the Service Desk is one of the best ways to help IT conceptualize employees as customers.
  • Service Desk ticket resolutions produce concrete, measurable outcomes. IT workers that resolve an employee service ticket see concrete results for their work. Employees also see the results and attach positive feelings to the improved processes.

As you implement ITIL at the Service Desk, consider it a dress rehearsal for implementing ITIL practices in other IT service delivery areas. Guide employees through the five precepts of the ITIL framework.

Step 1: Sketch Out a Service Strategy

A key ITIL principle is that customers do not buy products. Instead, they buy the satisfaction of their IT needs. Ask Service Desk workers to generate a list of frequent customer requests so that they can produce a better Service Catalog. For each service, define what successful resolution looks like to customers.

Step 2: Produce a Detailed Design of Each Service

Look over the services offered and decide how each one is most efficiently delivered. Better service delivery may require procedural changes, like constructing a better Incident Management Escalation Matrix. Also consider IT worker skill development, infrastructure alterations, service metrics and Supplier Management.

Step 3: Transition to the New Service Model

On the back-end, implement new architectures and deal with supplier issues as much as possible before deploying the changed procedures to customers. Ask Service Desk workers to rehearse common service ticket scenarios before deploying new procedures to actual customers. Take time to educate the employees and to let them know what changes to expect. Then, roll out the new procedures.

Step 4: Run With It

As the transition occurs, ask IT to keep you posted on what they’re learning from each customer encounter, and incorporate customer feedback to create a better Service Design. Once transitional pain has subsided, coach the Service Desk personnel to examine service delivery objectively and ask themselves these questions:

  • Does IT see service delivery the way that employees see service delivery?
  • How are we balancing stability and responsiveness?
  • Are we delivering quality service in a cost-effective way?
  • To what extent are we reactive instead of proactive?

Step 5: Make Improvements

Conduct periodic reviews of Service Desk operations and refine the new procedures. Continue offering better products, streamlining workflows and creating efficiency.

This view of implementing ITIL at the Service Desk is highly simplified. To give IT workers an in-depth ITIL education, encourage them to enroll in a certification course at Ashford Global IT.

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Frank is a leading trainer in IT Security.

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