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Why the Service Catalog Isn’t a Fast Food Menu

If you want French fries, what makes you order them at a drive-through window instead of at a fancy restaurant? Sometimes what you order isn’t just about the food itself, but where you are eating it, and using the Service Catalog can be the same way. At least, that’s the argument the ITIL Zealot makes.

Since its birth in the 90’s, the Service Catalog has come to be seen as a menu for the customer to order off of. Which seems like a nice analogy, but it’s not correct according to the ITIL Zealot. In its simplest form, the catalog is short descriptions that let the customer know what they are getting. However, the fries taste different depending on where you go. Essentially, it’s the same product, but no two batches are ever going to be the same. That’s why you shouldn’t be disappointed when your order doesn’t look like the picture. The same product could still have a vastly different value.

Before you throw out the Service Catalog entirely, remember it can still be a useful tool. However, to use it correctly you and the customer have to understand what kind of menu the order is coming from.

About Rachel Ginder

Rachel Ginder was a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success and joined the team in 2013. She also helped with social media and research.

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