Monthly Archives: May 2016

SIAM: revolution or evolution?

simonmichelle

In today’s blog post, Service Management workshop leaders Simon Dorst and Michelle Major-Goldsmith provide a sneak peek into some of their thoughts on SIAM in the lead-up to their half-day workshop on SIAM: revolution or evolution, at this year’s Service Management Conference. Service Management Conference Workshops will take place on Tuesday 16 August 2016 in Brisbane.

 

Service Integration and Management (SIAM), like ITIL® before it, appears to have originated from HM Government (UK). References to SIAM began to emerge in the UK in the late 2000s, when it was purported to provide a framework to obtain better value for money from multi supplier service engagements.  Lately its adoption has increased globally due to the increasingly complex, modular managed IT service environment evident in most enterprises.

There is much confusion about whether SIAM is actually something new (i.e. different from ITIL), whether it will last, or even whether it is something relevant.

Our half-day pre-conference workshop for Service Management 2016’s Shake I.T. Up Conference will allow delegates to consider the various perspectives and stakeholders in a SIAM environment.  Based on current thinking, global developments and using practical scenarios, it provides the participants with an analysis of the core principles, processes, functions, governance and cultural re-engineering required for SIAM success.

In multi-sourced service delivery models, the key to success is the ability to manage the challenge of cross-functional, cross-process, cross-provider integration. SIAM enables an organisation to derive the benefits of innovation and flexibility that multi-sourcing brings whilst still presenting an integrated service wrap for the customer. SIAM is both framework and a function. Typically built upon the full ITIL lifecycle model, SIAM includes additional focus on ‘end to end’ service governance and controls across all suppliers.

The rationale for SIAM is insurance that the IT and business strategies align with the challenges in multi-provider environments. Integral to this is the three layers of Customer-Retained governance, SIAM Control & Management, and Service Delivery (or variants like Strategic-Tactical-Operational, Defining-Designing-Delivering, Governance-Control-Monitoring etc).

Organisations trying to implement SIAM need to understand the distinction between integrated service management and SIAM. For example, implementing a set of processes within a centralised management will not create a SIAM function. Failing to add the extra elements of SIAM such as governance, autonomy and the impartiality to manage the providers creates SIAM functions that rarely move beyond operational delivery.

For more information, you may want to read:

By |2018-03-19T16:23:20+00:00May 26th, 2016|guest blogger, Service Management 2016, SIAM, Workshop|

Five ways to create a culture of innovation

amantha_imber-280

 

Today’s guest blogger is Service Management 2016 keynote Dr Amantha Imber. Amantha is the Founder of  innovation consultancy Inventium, and her latest book, The Innovation Formula, tackles the topic of how organisations can create a culture where innovation thrives.

 

Does your business have a culture in which innovation thrives? Are people challenging the status quo and being encouraged by leaders to take risks in pursuit of innovation? Or is the opposite true, whereby people don’t take time to listen to new ideas and suggestions?

Building a culture of innovation is hard work. However, the scientific research into how to create a culture where innovation thrives is both plentiful and precise. The following are five of the most impactful drivers of an innovation culture.

1. Challenge – and finding the right level of it

Research has shown that feeling a strong sense of challenge in one’s work is a critical driver of innovation. Challenge refers to people working on tasks that are complex and interesting — yet at the same time not overly taxing or unduly overwhelming.

It is important that you don’t simply think about how to give people the biggest possible challenge. Instead you should ensure that the level of challenge you set is one that is achievable. On the flip side, setting tasks that people are able to complete with their eyes closed will not breed a culture where innovation thrives.

Matching the level of challenge to an individual’s skill level is key to finding the optimal level of challenge. 
As a manager, take time to thoughtfully consider how you allocate tasks and projects to people. Ensure that you are matching these elements so that people feel a significant sense of challenge.

2. Risk-taking – and failure not being seen as a dirty word

The notion of failure being unacceptable is one I have found resonates with many organisations. Failure is generally thought of as a dirty word, and something that gets swept under the carpet when it does rear its ugly head. But being able to acknowledge and learn from failure is a huge part of building a culture where risk-taking is tolerated and where innovation can thrive.

As a leader, think about ways you can signal that risk-taking is an acceptable part of business. Talk openly about failures and what can be learnt from them with your team.

3. Experimentation before implementation

When thinking about how your company approaches innovation, ensure that experimentation is a mandatory step. Rather than just going straight from idea to implementation, you should first run experiments. This involves setting hypotheses as to why you believe an idea will add value to the customer and creating a minimum viable product (MVP) – the most basic version of the idea that will still allow for learnings. You can then set up an experiment to test your hypotheses using the MVP and based on the results, iterate or change course accordingly. Experimentation is a very effective way to help reduce the risk of new innovations.

4. Autonomy – loosening the reigns

Many researchers have found that creativity is dramatically enhanced when people are given the freedom to decide how they do their jobs. When people feel as if they have a choice in how things can be done they are significantly more likely to engage in trial and error and, through this, find more effective ways of doing things.
 Just be sure to set clear goals, as the autonomy effect is strongest when people are clear on what you want them to achieve.

5. Debate – and welcoming all views

One of the factors that has been identified as critical for creating a culture where innovation thrives is ensuring that different points of view are encouraged and that ideas are regularly debated. Lead by example and encourage others to debate and discuss ideas that you bring to the table – actively encouraging different view points will strengthen your innovations significantly.

In addition, avoid the temptation to recruit people who are just like you—doing so will only discourage debate and encourage homogeneity of thinking.

 

Dr Amantha Imber will give a keynote address at the Service Management Conference from 17-18 August 2016.  Amantha can be contacted at amantha@inventium.com.au.

By |2018-03-19T16:23:21+00:00May 19th, 2016|guest blogger, innovation, Leadership|

Cutting through the hype: what 2016 looks like for technology leaders

Michael-Billimoria-100

Service Management 2015 speaker Michael Billimoria is our guest blogger today! Here, Michael summarises expert predictions for 2016 and says critical aspects of managing business technology must adapt to a faster world.

At the beginning of each year, a range of business technology industry pundits offer their predictions for the year to come. You will have seen the more common predictions such as:

  • Enterprise tech will embrace the cloud
  • Security hacks will increase but our defence systems will get smarter
  • Big Data is more about insights, context and speed than the actual data
  • Machine learning will come of age
  • User/customer experience is king
  • The Internet of Things will keep growing exponentially

Now, these predictions are all well and good, but it’s time to consider what they really mean for enterprise IT in Australia – and what technology leaders can take away after all the hype.

1. Organisations using traditional IT delivery will reach a crisis point

Old methods for running IT projects don’t work well in today’s faster-moving technology environment. Getting projects over the line on time (or at all) just isn’t happening often enough, resulting in stalled or compromised initiatives and too great a cost.

As my colleague Ian Rogers pointed out in a recent article, it’s time for a next generation of project management, (and, by the way, that doesn’t simply mean adopting an Agile methodology). Rather than continuing with techniques which were fine for the construction and manufacturing industries they were initially designed for, we must accept they have failed to address the inherent speed, scope, and complexity of business technology.

As Ian observes, software isn’t concrete and people aren’t machines. We must become more flexible in the way we deliver technology projects, and start incorporating change management earlier and more thoroughly into the project management process. Flexible, Agile, and sociable is the way forward.

2. The second wave of Continuous Delivery will arrive

DevOps has been on the cards for a while, and pioneered by a few, however many organisations hadn’t ‘got it’, because the term doesn’t really explain its power and value. Let’s face it, the term DevOps kind makes you feel like you should move your Dev and Ops teams together and the problem is solved!

However there is finally a growing understanding that working smarter is based on making three Fs work together: feedback, flow and faith (or trust). As discussed by my colleague Harold Peterson, in his piece Bring down the wall between Dev and Ops, Puppet Labs found in a study of 5,000 companies that those with a DevOps function deploy 30 times more frequently and have 200-times shorter lead times. These aren’t just silly statistics; they represent IT responding to despondent business professionals in a way which is actually better meeting their expectations.

Not all businesses need to be like Amazon, which deploys software 23,000 times a day, but the actual time to deploy is not the point; it’s much more about helping the business win. We have now got some excellent and proven tools and techniques for implementing a streamlined DevOps operation. Greater numbers of enterprises are embracing automation and orchestration to improve flow. DevOps is becoming part of a more holistic delivery environment that also involves techniques from Lean Change (see prediction #4 below) and the Scaled Agile Framework.

3. We’ll experience compounding supplier and shadow IT problems

Last year in SIAM: Transforming service delivery – the ‘new black’ for multi-sourcing, I wrote about the promise of Service Integration and Management (SIAM) for effectively managing multisourcing of IT.

While it’s gaining more traction overseas, SIAM has so far proven too overwhelming for most Australian enterprises. We’re observing that few IT organisations succeed in explaining its benefits to the business; it’s new, so it’s tough to find solid data to justify changing the entire IT operating model to accommodate it. Meanwhile, many ITOs are inundated by a flood of 40 or more separate service providers, when all the business really wants is servers and storage provisioned, rather than a seemingly costly implementation of an extension to ITSM.

There’s serious value in adopting a SIAM approach to sourcing management and, while most organisations won’t jump on board this year, those that do will be gaining a serious competitive advantage in 2017/18.

Further to this, the problem of shadow IT (AKA credit card IT) continues to grow apace – with the business continuing to ‘do its own thing’ without recourse to the ITO and inevitably creating more management and service delivery conflict. It’s a matter of trust or faith. The world of technology is absolutely no longer the domain of the technology department; it hasn’t been for some time. Only when the ITO can deliver feedback and flow will the business have faith.

4. Organisational change will begin to catch up in the IT world

Organisational change management can no longer be managed directly by just the change management experts. With the speed-to-market now required, it’s simply not possible to get people ready in time if change is a separate process.

Lean Change is one of the new techniques that allow those affected by change to take control of their own destiny and make change work. As Paul Jenkinson points out in Lean Change: A unique approach to managing change at speed, successful change management is hard enough in static environments, let alone in this age of digital revolution.

While there are a myriad of benefits to adopting Lean Change techniques, the key differentiator is that those affected by the change are able to participate openly and manage their own change journey. This is smart thinking, as organisational change affects us all differently so every experience is unique.

5. The age of closed door security is over

In 2016 it will become increasingly apparent that simply closing the door and barring the windows won’t do. In fact, this approach has become a hinderer rather than an enabler of doing business.

In his recent article, Man the barricades… what barricades?, Clem Colman contrasts today’s enterprise with a medieval castle. It’s no longer possible to keep everything within walls, and the people and assets you need to protect have long flown. New security technology will be successful when it has been built into every component: embedded within every device and every software application.

There’s also an even greater need to educate every employee on security and risk reduction. This is, protecting your organisation from inside-out as opposed to outside-in. Operating beyond the fortress, frequently on their own devices, they must become much savvier about the risks of using technology to play their own part in your enterprise security. Welcome to the new world of cyber-resilience.

What does it all mean? It’s about speed

If there’s a common thread in these trends, it’s that the world of technology keeps accelerating and technology professionals using ‘traditional’ techniques will never catch up. In a digital world, there’s a strong link between the ways in which speed is impacting on the way we manage IT projects, change, service delivery, our suppliers and security, this calls for agility across every aspect of technology delivery.

At UXC, I’m proud that the areas mentioned above are all areas we’re heavily investing in, and I’m interested in hearing whether these predictions are becoming a reality in your own organisation, and how you’re coping with them. Feel free to get in touch!

This blog was originally posted on UXC Consulting’s blog

Shake I.T. Up this year at Service Management 2016! Register here.

By |2018-03-19T16:23:21+00:00May 12th, 2016|guest blogger, Service Management 2016|

Shaken and stirred


simone
mark 

 This week we welcome guest bloggers Simone Jo Moore (Service Management Consultant and Trainer) and Mark Smalley (The IT Paradigmologist – ASL BiSL Foundation).  Simone and Mark will host a workshop at the Service Management 2016 Workshop Day on Tuesday 16 August 2016.

 

“Shaken, not stirred” is, of course, James Bond’s catchphrase that describes his preference for martini cocktails. “Shake I.T. Up” is the overarching theme of itSMF Australia’s annual Conference for 2016, that is intended to help you “find new ways to shake up your IT projects, teams and approaches for greater agility, lasting improvements, and better business outcomes”. Now this sounds great but as a seasoned conference-goer, I’m frequently disappointed by the effect that conferences have on their attendees. Despite us talking enthusiastically about new topics such as Cloud and DevOps, little in the real world changes unless people really get passionate. We talk the talk but why don’t we walk the talk? What does it take to stir people enough that they change their behaviour?

Behavioural change is one of the topics that fascinate my workshop partner Simone Jo Moore and me. In the process of researching, writing, and facilitating workshops, we’ve certainly learnt a lot and hopefully others have got a better grip of behaviour and the iceberg of factors that influence it, including values, beliefs and emotions.

We’ve done some writing on this topic and are pleased to share some of our work with you. You may like to read about ITSM problems – is poor behaviour the cause?, how to use behaviours to align people management and operations, or how to behave yourself – the business-IT relationship.

We’re offering a half-day pre-conference workshop for Shake I.T Up called Behave Yourself – Building Better IT Relationships. Our intent is to help you assess your organisation’s performance in terms of desired behaviour, understand what actually drives behaviour, determine your own core values and emotions and – most importantly, after the conference – start experimenting with interventions that actually influence behaviour. We’re very much looking forward to conducting this workshop and it would be great if you could join us.

It’s our conviction that I.T. will only change when people’s values, beliefs and emotions change, so let’s not only Shake I.T. Up in Brisbane but also Stir I.T. Up!

By |2018-03-19T16:23:21+00:00May 5th, 2016|guest blogger, Service Management 2016, Workshop|