Why is it that we seem to complicate
reporting when it comes to service management? If we are really aligning to
business outcomes it should be relatively simple, yet for some reason it seems
that more effort goes into the reporting process than value comes out.
At a recent meeting with some like-minded
people we were discussing this very topic. One person had mentioned that in
their organization they were required to provide all reports in a summarized
monthly document. When I asked what that looked like they said it was about 25
pages of tabular data with some bar and pie graphs thrown in. Literally all the reports summarized (seemed like a contradiction of terms). I asked them if
it took a long time to pull together and they said that the system pulls it out
and they do some editing so it really only took about an hour now that they had it down to an art form. What was more
revealing was their department doesn’t really do anything with the metrics which
are extracted. In other words the vast amount of data that was extracted is not driving improvement. They
believed that while their teams wanted to improve they had no time to go
through this “summarized” report.
Another person said that their problem was
almost the opposite. They recently implemented a new service management tool which came with several canned reports as they tend to do. The leadership
indicated that they should use those as they were simple and easy to read, and hey, they are already built and ready to go. They went on to say that while they were way quicker to go through than the previous
organizations reports that they also had little value since they didn’t tie
directly to their organizations operations and improvement strategy, if there
even was one.
Much like the story of the three bears, there
was a case of too much reporting, too little reporting and then there is the
case where the reporting needs to be just right, which is where we want to live. To do
that we need to ensure that we are measuring the things that will enable us to
meet our business objectives.
In the beginning start out simple, even focusing
on one critical success factor with some KPI’s is better than blindly following
some canned reports and far better than boiling the ocean with several reports
with little meaning.
Once you have some measurable success you
will be able to build on that momentum and continue on your service improvement
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Labels: ITIL, ITSM, Service Management, Service Management Reporting