Future of ITIL
Historically, ITIL has always been a nebulous cloud of books, training courses, consultancy, products, opinion makers, and loud talkers. It’s sustained a whole global ecosystem of people implementing, re-implementing, arguing and debating the best bits, the wrong bits, and the good bits. (Small Product Plug: As a vendor, we talk about ITIL a lot, our products support their processes closely – and of course we are Pink Verified to the higher possible level on that.) But there’s never been a clear voice of ownership. Just a collection of organizations and individuals with varying levels of ‘closeness’ to ITIL source. Sometimes you get to meet someone who contributed to some of the work, often to accredited authors of training material, but no one who can speak for future plans for ITIL as a whole. That’s the way it’s always been. We’ve had the ITIL tablets passed down to us all, we all know them, some of us might have contributed to small part, but there has never been much real insight into what’s next or why beyond continual slow rewrites and adjustments. And I’m referring to stone tablets, not iPads. Much like the stone tablets of religion, there’s not much rapid or dramatic change in that content as modern life changes swiftly.
Much of that is down to the history. ITIL has previously been ‘owned’ by the UK Government, although used around the world. That ownership has amounted to fairly remote responsibility. Almost like a foster home where providing food, and bed, and gentle support is enough, but clearly is a holding pattern until some loving, real parents arrive to adopt into a caring nurturing real environment.
And that might just be what’s happened to ITIL. Capita and the Cabinet Office have now started up a true independent joint venture. The significant words there is ‘started up’. A number of times speaking to the guys behind what is currently known as ‘NewCo’ until a name is decided, they referred to it being like a Start-Up, literally a small number of individuals with investment and financial and business control but having to build a plan and a business that has not existed before, from the ground up. They make the coffee and decide the business plan.
They’ve got about six months now, the new business goes into full operational capacity in 2014.
And here’s the remarkable thing: they were describing some great plans for ITIL. Specifically, their remit is to develop ITIL into greater success as a global best practice by providing industry leadership, leveraging the strengths of the ITIL content and the ITIL industry, and growing and evolving ITIL.
And by the way, if you are reading this, there is a very good chance that ‘industry leadership’ they refer to is the industry you work in. If you work in IT, providing IT services to a business or to a customer base then you work in that industry.
To boil down the content of the presentation and conversations into bullet points, the new custodians of ITIL intend to:
- Grow ITIL uptake in international markets
- Invest in existing ITIL materials and products
- Develop the best practice itself
- Invest in a single ITIL online community
- Offer multiple-language ITIL content solutions for major employers and industry players
This also brings us to their remarkable plans to transform ITIL training: They’re going to focus on simulation/game learning approaches. So this training course of the future is very likely to be online, simulated, role, and game based. Overall they want to be collaborative, inclusive, and innovative. In order to make ITIL a financial and global best practice success.
And you know, I don’t think that’s so hard. We see ITIL referred to already with most of our ITSM customers around the world. The biggest challenge we see our customers facing in those businesses around the world to how to more easily get to understand and more simply get to a position of success with ITIL.
Now that the orphan has finally been adopted by what appears to be caring loving parents, I have high hopes for more organizations around the world understanding and getting value from the guidelines and best practices in ITIL. Frankly, that’s good for all of us.