Irish private and public-sector organisations need to close the gap between IT and business users if they are to manage costs and benefit from a recovery in the local and global economy.
This is the view of Mark O’Loughlin of I.T. Alliance at the launch of his new book The Service Catalog, at a meeting of the IT Service Management Forum in Dublin.
“Business users must appreciate that technology is not a switch that can be turned on and off at short notice and the IT department must have better appreciation of business users’ needs,” said O’Loughlin at the launch of the book.
The Service Catalog is a menu of IT, business and customer services within an organisation. It also allows customers to directly avail of the organisation’s services, effectively providing a route to market. Some analysts have forecast that the growth of IT service catalogues will explode in 2010 as IT organisations streamline processes to align better to business needs and seek to provide cost-effective services to users at lower costs.
O’Loughlin, who is service management consultant at Irish-owned I.T. Alliance Group, said the focus on The Service Catalog was being driven, in part, by the implementation of productivity technologies, such as virtualisation and cloud computing.
“Effective cloud computing will rely on customers being able to select for themselves the services that they need, as and when they are needed, via actionable service catalogs,” he said.
“Implementing such actionable service catalogs will ensure more cost effective, timely and relevant delivery of services,” he said.
Karl Howley, chairman of the IT Service Management Forum, who heads up I.T. Alliance’s IT service management practice, said that the service catalog was an important concept as recommended by ITIL, which is the world’s leading standard for IT service management best practice.
“Some have described the service catalog as one of the ‘must have’ initiatives of 2010. This new book by an Irish author helps to clarify and understand the service catalog. It will help organisations identify key services that support business processes, understand the contribution made by those services and manage them appropriately,” Howley said.
The Service Catalog is published by Van Haren Publishing and costs €39.95.