When is a railroad like IT service management? The answer, as Rob England demonstrates in his comparison, has everything to do with providing a service. As England points out, railroads weren’t just about moving people or moving freight, but also about doing so while meeting the needs of customers and stakeholders.
In much the same way, service management must provide a service for users which meets the need of those users and the stakeholder involved. In IT, this means maintaining and updating applications as your users and stakeholders require, providing support for those applications and services, and keeping your users happy along the life of the service. England believes that everything service management does should be considered as part of what it provides to the customer. As he explains:
Adopting a service management approach can have a profound affect [sic] on the way your business works and your staff think. It takes us away from that introverted, bottom-up thinking that begins with what we have and what we do and eventually works its way up and out to what we deliver to the customer. Instead, with service management we change our point of view from concentrating on the internal “plumbing” of our business, moving instead to a focus on what “comes out of the pipe” – what we provide. We take an “outside-in” view. Starting from this external perspective we then work our way top-down into the service organisation to derive what we need and what we have to do in order to provide that service.
England suggests, furthermore, that the service management organization would do well to look at what they do from the customer’s point of view to start with. This helps minimize the risk of doing things cheaply and efficiently (which are the primary concerns of service management) and add in the needs of usefulness and reliability (which are the primary concerns of the user or customer). Read the full post here: http://www.theitsmreview.com/2012/04/rob-england-service-management/