UT Austin Using ITIL to Improve IT Service Delivery

Replacing the University’s Administrative Systems Technical Architecture (including retiring the mainframe), modernizing business processes and data management and strengthening the systems development processes are key goals of the Administrative Systems Modernization Program (ASMP 2.0). ASMP 2.0 actively collaborates with Information Technology Services (ITS) in meeting these goals through developing and launching enterprise ready Services for consumption during the implementation of ASMP 2.0 and beyond.

Developing a new infrastructure has provided ASMP 2.0 the opportunity to implement best-in-class tools and methodologies that support these goals. One widely accepted industry standard being used by ASMP 2.0 and other ITS projects is ITIL (formerly known as the Information Technology Infrastructure Library). ITIL is a framework of processes and practices to better align IT Services with business needs and manage the implementation and support of IT services. There are currently millions of certified ITIL practitioners worldwide.

Susan Roy, Director of Customer Support Services (CSS), recently provided an FYI presentation highlighting the ITIL basics. Additionally, she noted that ASMP 2.0 has seen some major successes in implementing the ITIL framework, especially the ASMP 2.0 Technical Architecture Implementation (TAI). TAI, which is working to replace the University’s Administrative Systems Technical Architecture, has integrated ITIL processes, supporting a customer-oriented delivery and support of IT Services.

ITIL defines a Service as “a means of delivering value to customers by facilitating outcomes customers want to achieve without the ownership of specific costs and risks.” ITIL encourages IT groups to deliver Services to their customers through a five stage process:

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  • Service Strategy
  • Service Design
  • Service Transition
  • Service Operation
  • Continual Service Improvement (CSI)

Each of these stages supports the entire lifecycle of a Service. This begins with determining what needs to be offered and then designing the Service based on stated business needs. This evolves into determining the process for implementation and continues through transitioning the Service into production and monitoring metrics in feedback loops to ensure continual improvement.

“ITIL is a proven framework that has the power, when implemented effectively, to build strong IT organizations that meet the needs of both the IT provider and the external recipients of Services,” said Susan. “The goal of implementing ITIL at UT Austin is to ensure that we are able to consistently deliver value to our students, faculty and staff.”

IT Service Management (ITSM), a practice that aligns technological Services with enterprise business needs, will also contribute to the value of a Service to campus. Susan explains, “Service Management is about ‘doing the right things’. ITIL is about ‘doing things right’. Add these two factors together and the mixture catalyzes into great IT Service. Benefits include consistent processes for customer and provider, reliable Service delivery, key metrics to ensure quality delivery and improved experience and satisfaction for the entire UT community.”

Interested in learning more? To become certified in ITIL, you can attend a 3 day course offered on campus (an in depth course ideal for those in a delivery or service role with a central IT department),  or search for additional courses offered in the Austin area. Other learning resources are provided on Lynda.com or you can peruse the recent FYI presentation for a high level introduction to the ITIL framework.

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