Wednesday 18th to Friday 20th June was our ITSM training session. Amazingly, the lovely Sally Swaine of the IT & Digital Skills team managed to secure 3 whole days of our Director’s and Assistant Directors’ time to attend, which I thought was nothing short of a miracle to be honest! In addition we had a selection of managers and representatives from other teams to discover what ITSM and ITIL are and how we can benefit from them as an institution.
The days were structured as thus:
- ITIL Awareness (Wednesday)
- Operation Aftermath simulation game (Thursday)
- Change Management and looking forward (Friday)
Overall, the days were really informative, bringing to light the core elements of ITIL and the purpose of IT Service Management. We spoke a lot about ITSM bringing VALUE to the business (which I have spoken about briefly in a previous post) and about how this is the most important thing an IT Services section can do to ensure they are aiding the University in the best way they can. Our trainer, Adam White-Bower from Quanta training, really emphasised the fact that great IT Service is about providing exactly what the University needs “and not one iota more”, not going above and beyond but finding out what the University really NEEDS (not what they want) and being able to quantify and offer that.
We went into quite a lot of detail on the ITIL Lifecycle on the first day, which I will be delving into in future posts to explain why each element is important and how it would impact us as an institution.
Operation Aftermath on the second day was hilarious and fast paced, I think several people may have left with slightly less hair and slightly more stress lines than when they arrived! Each person in the room was given a role in the simulation game, which was based around running a refugee camp after a natural disaster. Some of the role allocations included Richard Murphy playing the Camp Manager (Service Delivery Manager in ITIL terms) who ran the whole thing, Vince Swann playing the Systems Engineer (Applications Manager), Bret Giddings playing the part of Welfare Officer (Change Manager) and Lina Cullington playing the Liaison Officer (Service Desk Agent). See the pictures below for an idea of what we got up to:
There were shouts of “Cholera!” and “Fire, where’s the fire?!” I will leave this to your imagination (or you can ask one of the attendees) but, needless to say, it was a very entertaining but also informative day.
The third day we focused on Managing Change in an organisation and Stakeholder Engagement. It really struck home to me in this day how difficult this is but also how important – making sure you know who to talk to, at the right time in the right way, ensuring everyone is actually appropriately engaged and how it can be very easy to push forward with changes without doing the requisite work which means that at best everyone gets very confused and at worst it annoys loads of people and the change doesn’t even stick anyway. If you’re interested in Managing Change there’s a couple of great Lynda.com course on it here:
So what’s next? I will be talking to all training attendees to find out what they think the key benefits are for us as a section and for the University as a whole. From there we’ll be really defining what we want to get out of the changes and why, which I will share with you here. And then we’ll be looking in more depth about how we go about doing that, which is where each and every one of you, whether you’re in IT Services or not, comes in.
Do you have previous experience in ITSM or ITIL in a previous institution? Or a view on what would be the most beneficial thing for us? It would be great to hear your thoughts and ideas in the comments, as well as any ideas you may have for how we could achieve some quick wins for the section.