A day in the life of an Oracle Applications Consultant

Why ITIL implementations fail

Although I’ve been in the IT industry for some time now, ITIL is something I only recently became aware of. The Wiki Encyclopedia provides a really good definition of what ITIL is, as follows:

The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is a customizable framework of best practices that promote quality computing services in the information technology (IT) sector. ITIL addresses the organisational structure and skill requirements for an IT organisation by presenting a comprehensive set of management procedures with which an organisation can manage its IT operations. These procedures are supplier independent and apply to all aspects of IT infrastructure.

The Wiki Encyclopedia ITIL definition page also provides a really good overview of the ITIL frameworks and the supporting sets.

I recently came across an interesting article by Malcom Fry at CIO Online entitled the The Pitfalls of ITIL. The article outlines the top ten reasons why ITIL implementations fail and discusses IT Service Management (ITSM).

10 reasons for ITIL implementation failure:

  1. Lack of Management commitment
  2. Spending too much time on complicated process diagrams
  3. Not creating work instructions
  4. Not assigning process owners
  5. Concentrating too much on performance
  6. Being too ambitious
  7. Failing to maintain momentum
  8. Allowing departmental demarcation
  9. Ignoring solutions other than ITIL
  10. Not reviewing the entire ITIL framework

What grabbed my attention was the 1st point. This is also listed as the main reason why ERP implementations fail in all the books and articles I have read on the subject - something for management to be aware of and to try and rectify!! A case in point is this Rockford Consulting article which provides the following list of the 12 Cardinal Sins of ERP implementation:

  1. Lack of Top Management Commitment
  2. Inadequate Requirements Definition
  3. Poor ERP Package Selection
  4. Inadequate Resources
  5. Resistance to Change/Lack of Buy-in
  6. Miscalculation of Time and Effort
  7. Misfit of Application Software with Business Processes
  8. Unrealistic Expectation of Benefits and ROI
  9. Inadequate Training and Education
  10. Poor Project Design and Management
  11. Poor Communications
  12. Ill-advised Cost Cutting

Useful ITIL Links

I’ve added these links to my link blog as well as referenced them in the tags at the end of the post.

Posted by Richard Byrom on 05/31 at 10:39 PM
  1. Wearing my professional hat (as someone employed by Europe’s leading ITIL trainer) I take some issue with the above 😉

    However it recognised that although ITIL is good for infra-structure (the second ‘I’) it is not the discipline of choice for ‘applications life cycle’ management there are other tools for this (google “ASL Foundation” as a starter)

    Posted by Pete_S  on  06/01  at  09:57 PM
  2. Came across the ASL foundation site as well as the definition of ASL on the Wiki Encyclopedia. I’m not familiar with the difference between these two methodologies so I did a bit of reading at the ITIL survival site. To be honest after reading this I’m still not clear on what the differences are. Perhaps you can enlighten me?

    Posted by Richard Byrom  on  06/07  at  03:06 PM
  3. ITIL is about infra-structure - -  service, change, incident and problem management and usually relates to physical infrastructure (networks, servers desktop etc)

    ASL is all about Application lifecycle - the cradle to grave stuff that developers do! There is a lot of common ground but ITIL does not really fit with software development

    Posted by Pete_S  on  06/09  at  12:32 AM
  4. One more ITIL resource for you: a blog opresneting the skeptical view of ITIL.  Folk should hear both sides of the story before making decisions 😉

    Posted by The ITIL Skeptic  on  06/04  at  12:02 PM
  5. Note that the above skeptical blog is now known by a more general name; the IT Skeptic

    Posted by The IT Skeptic  on  03/08  at  01:53 PM

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