How ITIL can help outsourcing industry?

You will find peace not by trying to escape your problems, but by confronting them courageously. You will find peace not in denial, but in victory: J. Donald Walters

The beginning of the 21st century saw the emergence of new organizations called as Companies which outsource their non-core projects to other small businesses (external providers) and make their staff focus their skills on improving their productivity and performance on core processes. The history of outsourcing dates back to the Industrial Revolution where industrial owners distributed the jobs to other providers because they did not possess the necessary tools for production. In the 1970s and 80s, Publishers used to outsource those functions that were related with printing, composition and raw materials such as paper etc.

Although outsourcing has become a major business in recent times, the fact cannot be ruled out, that the projects outsourced did not yield satisfactory results in the beginning. There are few facts which have supported the measurement of unsatisfactory results and they are:

  • Main companies seldom examine and analyse their processes before transferring them to an outside provider. They should understand that unless they have good knowledge of the processes that are going to be shifted, an outsider will also find it difficult to handle them.
  • Since the last of 1990s, IT outsourcing has come a long way and it was used for reshaping by multinational organizations to create an effective and efficient infrastructure. The points listed below were found as the most common causes for failure in provision of services:
  1.  No proper communication exists between the parties regarding relevant details
  2. External provider’s inability to cope with service level agreements of the Parent Company with the customer
  3. External provider finds difficulty in adjusting according to the changing environment of the concerned industry
  4. Ineffective structure of governance for management of the relationship between the Organization and the external provider

In recent times, ITIL has been chosen to help organizations enhance the outcome of services or products for outsourcing. ITIL framework consists of a service lifecycle, consisting of five different phases: Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition, Service Operation, and Continual Service Improvement. One of the main reasons for implementation of ITIL by many organizations is for provision of services as per the requirements of the customer and garner benefits by reduction of costs etc.

Before implementation of ITIL, an organization has to understand that they must have clearly defined policies in place. This helps narrow down the time for successful ITIL Implementation.

How does ITIL Help in outsourcing?

  • ITIL places much emphasis on service level requirements and service level agreements and insists for aligning the processes of a main organization worldwide on a single platform. Once the terminologies and processes become consistent throughout the world, interaction with the external provider will become easy. A clear understanding of listing the processes for which ITIL needs to be implemented will make an organization attain success with better use of its available resources.
  • ITIL should be considered more as a framework rather than as a guideline for small and medium sized businesses as they could face challenges in the implementation of ITIL. Usually an external provider will implement Incident management and Change management of ITIL because of difference in roles and responsibilities. For these companies it will be wise to adapt to ITIL framework when they are dealing with a new project. Usually, customers would have become accustomed to a set of work procedures and resist changes to new ones.
  • Implementation of ITIL is not a ‘bed of roses’ at the beginning but will be covered with thorns as work procedure will become more complex and difficult. But it will in the long term garner full time benefits. ITIL calls for every task to be documented which calls for a lot of paperwork but subsequently the staff can have a history of all jobs done which make them feel in control when faced with an unwanted situation. Eventually processes will be simplified, and processes can be better organized.

Every organization or any external provider has to always remember that implementation of ITIL calls for a series of IT Transformations and should always be treated as a model view of managing and also controlling operations.

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