The guiding framework of ITIL has long helped companies manage their IT services. ITIL practices help companies shape their IT services, align services with overall business goals, and maintain control over incidents and systems. As more and more technology products hit the market, promising new IT capabilities and innovations, ITIL remains relevant and necessary as a management strategy. But this does not mean that ITIL and its governing body are not adjusting those best practices to fit the changing world of IT.

At a 2017 itSMF USA Fusion conference, governing body AXELOS announced an upcoming update to ITIL in the coming year. From a partnership to increase flexibility to the addition of AI, this update proves that ITIL is an ever-evolving framework for organizations to set a solid foundation for IT services. Based on this announcement, alongside projected ITSM trends in the upcoming year, this article will describe a few ITIL best practices to keep in mind for 2018.

Machine Learning Automation for ITIL Incident Management

The incident management process helps your organization restore services quickly while identifying issues to prevent future outages. Since incident remediation is a top priority for companies, the incident process is one of the most popular ITIL practice. With machine learning rapidly entering the world of automation – such as ServiceNow’s Intelligent Automation engine – companies can adopt faster incident identification and resolution solutions.

In 2018 and the coming years, IT organizations will be able to leverage new machine learning capabilities and automation to vastly improve their current ITIL incident process. With incident-triggered automated responses to reduce outage time, this AI addition will lead to improved customer satisfaction and service output. These engines can analyze vast amounts of data to find patterns and prevent future incidents. Ensure your company’s current automation solution has the best possible offerings for incident management so you can take advantage of this technology.

Increased ITIL Agility With New Partnerships

Though it can be tailored to fit any organization, ITIL has been criticized for its lack of agility and creation of “silo” problems. For organizations following ITIL practices rigidly, it certainly may seem like ITIL leaves little room for customization or changes. Set workflows from one stage to the next can also give the impression of set rules that cannot be changed especially compared to DevOps, which focuses primarily on agility and experimentation.

Based on a recent partnership announcement at the itSMF USA Fusion 2017 conference, these complaints have clearly been heard. IT professionals will be able to use ITIL in conjunction with DevOps, Agile, and Lean in 2018. According to itSMF USA president Cathy Kirsch, “Currently, ITIL and complementary practices, such as DevOps, Agile, and Lean, are used successfully in conjunction with each other, however, the next evolution of ITIL will promote and underpin dynamic collaboration.” This move promises new practical capabilities of ITIL for service management and demonstrates the flexibility of ITIL.

The Internet of Things and ITIL

Technology companies and IT organizations are beginning to bring the Internet of Things (IoT) to their services and products. The IoT essentially connects devices to Internet databases, bringing information from many places into one centralized location. Introducing IoT to businesses increases the rapid spread of information across many applications and devices, improves connectivity, and offers instant access to information. So how does this connect to ITIL best practices?

Like other IT processes and systems, IoT needs to follow some basic principles related to its maintenance, including performance metrics, security, and connectivity. ITIL brings control to an otherwise untamed system – meaning companies can apply ITIL practices to IoT management to ensure it is meeting business needs. The continuous improvement cycle, risk assessment, and security management, for instance, can keep the IoT running smoothly and safely. Companies adopting the IoT to improve their services and internal efficiencies should be sure to apply their same ITIL principles to manage it.

The Evolution of ITIL

ITIL remains a solid framework for business principles around the world. IT services are constantly changing and adapting to a fast-evolving digital world, but with the help of ITIL, managing those services is possible. Companies can apply ITIL to new systems and processes, ensuring their services are always performing at a high level and aligning with business goals. The addition of new business management products only underlines the need to continue relying on the ITIL framework to help guide and maintain IT standards.

As a ServiceNow Technology Partner, Infocenter can help. Contact us today to learn more. 

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