How does service strategy equate to a baseball game? Professor P. Ross S. Wise (the IT professor) didn’t create the analogy (we did), but he does present an excellent breakdown of the service portfolio process from strategy to execution. Imagine business value as the ball. Before you throw to the catcher’s mitt, you need a sound strategy and a good wind-up.
The Wind Up
The goal of service portfolio management is to negotiate the proper mix of services to provide a business, with attention to potential investments as well as an eye for services that should be shelved. The service portfolio also functions as a sort of historical record for people, process, technology and information from concept to end of life. It is a platform for strategic decision making that allows the processing of big executive changes to take place. In the portfolio review process, a proposal is “wound up” so to speak, meaning it is defined, analyzed, approved and chartered before being pitched to the product design phase.
And the Pitch
The service portfolio sets up managers to catch the value pitched to them in each individual project. Yet unlike project management, service is a game with a beginning but no foreseeable end. A service must be monitored on a continual basis to ensure that it is still aligned with business goals, and that it does not pose too great a risk.
Service portfolio management value can be defined in terms of its ability to link up IT and business goals, provide valuable insight into the impacts of IT services, increase the productivity of IT services as well as staff, lower costs through consolidation/enhancements/retirements, help IT meet business requirements, and enhance the industry’s reputation through branding.
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