IT Governance

7 Actions of Highly Effective Service Catalogue Managers

The service catalogue is the enticing menu of services that IT can provide the business. Done correctly, it can be as appetizing as the 1-2-3 Dollar Menu at McDonald’s. In a post at his website, Joe the IT Guy shares seven actions that can help a service catalogue manager craft something great:

  1. Change your mindset.
  2. Know your customer.
  3. Have a plan.
  4. Be service-focused.
  5. Be consistent.
  6. Keep things in perspective.
  7. Make it useful.

Service That Makes Sense

If you treat the creation of a service catalogue as something to be done just for the sake of doing it, then you are not seeing its full value. It is a public broadcast to the organization of all the good that IT can do, with the potential to augment strategy in yet unforeseen ways. Along those lines, as you collect your requirements for what to include in the service catalogue, you should be getting the brunt of your information from talking to customers. They do not want a jargon-filled list of technical services; they want to know in plain language how IT can help them. Build a plan with a precise scope around this principle.

Along the way, however, remember not to get carried away with how much information you include in the catalogue. If you insert a lot now, then you will have to always keep all of that information current into the future. Joe recommends starting simple by capturing these elements: service name and description, service levels, support details, general functionality and benefits, and related services.

As the catalogue matures, you may want it to be viewable in different ways, so that it is optimally palatable for every type of audience that might review it. Joe explains viewing options of three different types:

  • Business service catalog, which contains details of all the IT services delivered to the business. This view should contain the relationships with business units and business processes that are supported by each IT service so it’s clear and easy to understand what services are needed to support particular roles or tasks.
  • Technical service catalog, which expands on the business catalog with relationships to supporting services, shared services, components, and the configuration items necessary to support the provision of services to the business. The technical service catalog focuses internally on defining and documenting support agreements and contracts (OLAs and contracts with external providers or third parties).
  • Service request catalog, a view of the services’ information that’s made available to end users to buy (subscribe to) the IT services they need.

When you keep these ideas in mind, you should be left with a pretty darn useful service catalogue. For additional thoughts, you can view the original post here:

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