ITIL Case Study Essex County Council

ITIL Case Study Essex County Council

Read, analyse, understand and summarise this ITIL case study

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
ITIL Case Study Essex County Council
Just from $13/Page
Order Essay

The summary must be authentic, your own original work, technically correct, without spelling and grammar mistakes and presented in word file format. and do not copy content from the internet.

Use Calibri font with font size 11 

Plagiarised content will not be considered.

Case Study
March

2

015

Essex County Council
Louise John & Hayley Skargon

AXELOS.com

Contents
Introduction

3

Adopting ITIL 3

ITIL’s Continuing Use 6

What are your recommended Best Practices? 7

About AXELOS 8

Trade marks and statements 8

Introduction
Essex County Council (ECC) is England’s second largest local authority and is the overarching local
government body for Essex, an administrative area east of London. In collaboration with 12 district
and borough councils, two unitary authorities, and about 300 town and parish councils, the
Council provides vital services to a varied population of around 1.

4

million people over an area of
1,300 square miles.

Information Services (IS) are an in-house Information Services department who support a user base of
around 10,000 County Council employees, plus external customers. Made up of around 200 people,
IS provide a fully managed IT service, looking after servers, networks, websites and applications in
partnership with external suppliers.

Within IS sits the dedicated Service Management team. Made up of six people, including process
owners, process managers and an ITIL lead, they are committed to the adoption and Continual Service
Improvement of IS’s ITIL processes.

Adopting ITIL
WHAT CHALLENGES WERE YOU TRYING TO SOLVE WITH THE HELP OF ITIL?
When David Wilde joined in 2011 as Chief Information Officer (CIO), the customer base had little or no
faith in the IT department and there was a service report full of red Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s).
We had silos of knowledge without adequate tools to enable sharing and out of date documentation. As
Essex County Council was and is under continued financial pressure, with aspirations to become a truly
mobile and flexible workforce, we needed to standardize our estate, meet our Service Level Agreement
(SLA), gain control of the service, get our underpinning contracts into line and capitalize on sensible
outsourcing opportunities, such as our networking.

1

2

Essex County Council 3

Introduction
Essex County Council (ECC) is England’s second largest local authority and is the overarching local
government body for Essex, an administrative area east of London. In collaboration with 12 district
and borough councils, two unitary authorities, and about 300 town and parish councils, the
Council provides vital services to a varied population of around 1.4 million people over an area of
1,300 square miles.
Information Services (IS) are an in-house Information Services department who support a user base of
around 10,000 County Council employees, plus external customers. Made up of around 200 people,
IS provide a fully managed IT service, looking after servers, networks, websites and applications in
partnership with external suppliers.
Within IS sits the dedicated Service Management team. Made up of six people, including process
owners, process managers and an ITIL lead, they are committed to the adoption and Continual Service
Improvement of IS’s ITIL processes.

Adopting ITIL
WHAT CHALLENGES WERE YOU TRYING TO SOLVE WITH THE HELP OF ITIL?
When David Wilde joined in 2011 as Chief Information Officer (CIO), the IT function had been in
a period of transition. The customer base had little or no faith in the IT department and there was
a service report full of red Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). We had silos of knowledge without
adequate tools to enable sharing and out of date documentation. As Essex County Council was and is
under continued financial pressure, with aspirations to become a truly mobile and flexible workforce, we
needed to standardize our estate, meet our Service Level Agreement (SLA), gain control of the service,
get our underpinning contracts into line and capitalize on sensible outsourcing opportunities, such as
our networking.

1
2

Essex County Council4

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT ITIL?
David Wilde had previously worked for the Cabinet Office (from 1998–2001) and was involved in the
early design and creation of ITIL.

HAS ITIL TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION BEEN USEFUL TO ACHIEVE
YOUR GOALS?
Yes – ITIL Process Owners are trained to intermediate level and the whole department has been trained
to at least foundation level. Ensuring everyone is trained to foundation level has really helped to gain
momentum and increase awareness and understanding. The Service Management team have also
completed ‘what ITIL looks like in practice’ sessions – so those who have completed the formal training can
then easily see how we already follow the ITIL processes and their roles and responsibilities as part of this.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE ITIL RATHER THAN SOME OTHER METHODOLOGY?
Because it’s the best – it gets the right blend of service management, infrastructure management and
customer focus. It is internationally recognized and it has proven successful in both the UK and Europe.
David Wilde had previously adopted ITIL in four separate organizations and had seen the difference it makes.

HOW DID YOU APPROACH ITIL’S ADOPTION?
Our ITIL journey began with the help of third party consultants who documented and educated us on
7 processes – Incident Management, Problem Management, Service Asset & Configuration Management
(SACM), Change Management, Release Management and an improvement process based on the
Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle and Continual Service Improvement (CSI) approach. We then started a brand
new Service Management team from scratch to bring these processes to life, to educate, implement
and continually improve. To start with, we had one team member per process, but quickly moved to a
structure where team members were responsible for a lifecycle stage (e.g. Service Operations, Service
Transition) instead. We then embarked on training the whole department and working closely with all
the team to bring their current processes and procedures into ITIL alignment.

WHAT PUSH-BACK HAVE YOU FELT WHEN ADOPTING ITIL?
At the start, we felt a lot of push-back due to a lack of understanding and the fear of extra work and
extra overhead on top of day jobs. There was a view that ITIL just created a lot more paperwork when
we, as a department, were trying to be agile and responsive to the customer. There were also silos
between Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition and Service Operations – people didn’t
see the value of ITIL to the whole department and organization, they just viewed it as something they
might have to do.

WHAT WERE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES WHEN ADOPTING ITIL?
Dealing with the push-back to ensure process compliance was one issue. Also, the Business As Usual
(BAU) vs CSI compromise – getting people to take a fresh view of what they were doing to see where
and how we could improve our service. For the Service Management team, it was taking the documents
that had been created by the consultants and digesting them, understanding the ITIL theory, then
making it a reality at ECC – and getting other people enthusiastic about it!

Essex County Council 5

WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE DIFFERENTLY?
●● Started with less – we tried to implement all the processes all at once without really realizing that it

is a journey, and we underestimated the dependencies between the processes. Definitely start with
less and build from there

●● Ensured the process owners – the ones bringing it to life – had the time and space to take in the
theory and apply it, allowing time to build confidence and knowledge. Then, encouraging them
to educate the process managers and practitioners to gain buy-in. It is very difficult to adopt ITIL
without the right people involved – ’making it real’ is key

●● Implemented CSI in a quick and easy way from the start, rather than overcomplicating it and making
CSI unachievable.

WHAT WENT RIGHT?
●● Our CIO had the vision and was prepared to support the investment in the implementation and

continuation – understanding that it is a journey and it’s important to stick with it

●● Implementing a team whose sole focus was pragmatic ITIL alignment. The team were enthusiastic,
willing to learn and passionate about getting the whole department excited and on board with it

●● Getting the right balance between the external consultants and the new Service Management team in
order to share knowledge and upskill the team members.

WHAT ACHIEVEMENTS ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?
●● Our KPI journey – we identified the KPIs that were important in regaining the trust of our

customers and focused our CSI on getting those KPIs from red to green. In fact, we have had a 30%
improvement in our KPIs since the adoption of ITIL. Our biggest improvements are Standard Service
Requests delivered within target, which were formally at just was 32%, and are now at 86%, and
we have had a 25% reduction in Major Incidents

●● Our CSI culture – we now have a culture where CSI is embedded, celebrated, part of the day job and
enables everyone to get involved

●● Awareness and ITIL education – when people come back from their ITIL foundation training and can
understand and see how ITIL is adopted in ECC and how it all fits together

●● Our process compliance – we have achieved sustained and improved results in all of our audit
assurance over the last three years. This is most notable within Service Transition, where all audit
results have improved, but in particular within Service Asset and Configuration Management, which
has moved from ‘No assurance’ to ‘Substantial assurance’.

HOW (SPECIFICALLY) DID ITIL MAKE IT EASIER TO PUT THINGS RIGHT?
●● ITIL makes it easier as it avoids a lot of questions and queries by setting best practice standards.

The framework is logical, reasonable and transparent – making it hard to disagree with!

Essex County Council6

What are your recommended Best Practices?
TOP FIVE ITIL SHOULD DO’S

● Get appropriate stakeholder engagement from the start – in every level of the organization, from

the CIO to the service desk analyst, paying customer making the decisions to the IT end-user.
Enthusiastic and empowered stakeholders are one of the main factors in the success of ITIL from the
start and going forwards

● Finding flexibility in the framework – ITIL is a great recipe for success, but should be adopted and
adapted to make it appropriate for your organization

● Do CSI – don’t be scared of it! Focus on CSI as soon as you start. It is sometimes looked at as a
future dream state but, as soon as an ITIL process is in place, it can be improved! Make it easy –
don’t overcomplicate it

● Make it real – explain and demonstrate how ITIL works in practice, bring the documentation and the
textbooks to life!

● Excite your process owners – with the right people, right attitude, education and understanding, you
can’t go wrong!

TOP FIVE ITIL DON’T DO’S
● Don’t forget about the business – keep the customer at the centre. It’s easy to forget that we exist for

them, and keeping them happy is the aim of the game

● Don’t get bogged down with paperwork – make the process documents easy to digest and not
theoretical – make it real

● Don’t bombard people with ITIL jargon – if you are excited by ITIL, it’s easy to talk about the CSIs
for SACM’s KPIs, but some of your stakeholders who you are trying to excite and empower might
feel alienated

● Don’t assume you’re going to get it right the first time – even CSI needs CSIs. We’ve taken our
improvement process through CSI just recently, there is always improvements needed, whatever the
maturity of your processes and organization

● Don’t stop believing – don’t give up when it gets tough or when there is resistance, keep the
momentum going – it is worth it in the end.

4ITIL’s Continuing Use
HOW DO YOU CURRENTLY UTILIZE ITIL?
ITIL is now embedded as Business As Usual. It is at the centre of everything we do. For all CSI, we refer
to ITIL, actively encouraging alignment every day.

IS EVERYTHING PERFECT NOW?
No – although most of our KPIs are now green, we are still on our journey with a way to go, still
maturing our processes, still improving, still educating and enthusing!

WHAT ARE THE CURRENT CHALLENGES?
We are currently working our way back through the lifecycle. We are quite mature in Service Operations
and Transition, so have set our sights on bringing Service Strategy and Service Design up to the same
maturity level.

HOW ARE YOU PLANNING TO DO IT?
Through our CSI process – identifying the areas which are causing the most pain for the customer or
ourselves and improving them step by step.

WHAT OTHER METHODOLOGIES ARE YOU USING?
Across the department, we also use APMP, TOGAF and ISO27001. We don’t use a formal agile
methodology but our project team, PMO, TDA’s and applications development do use an agile approach.

HOW DO THESE DIFFERENT METHODOLOGIES WORK TOGETHER?
We have worked on improving the interfaces between the processes – e.g. TOGAF inputs into the
Service Design package and APMP has defined, documented and understood interfaces across the
lifecycle but, most importantly, with release management.

WHAT PLANS DO YOU HAVE FOR THE FUTURE?
In the medium term, we are looking to gain SDI accreditation for our Service Desk and in the long term
we would like to gain ISO20000 accreditation.

3

Essex County Council 7

What are your recommended Best Practices?
TOP FIVE ITIL SHOULD DO’S

●● Get appropriate stakeholder engagement from the start – in every level of the organization, from
the CIO to the service desk analyst, paying customer making the decisions to the IT end-user.
Enthusiastic and empowered stakeholders are one of the main factors in the success of ITIL from the
start and going forwards

●● Finding flexibility in the framework – ITIL is a great recipe for success, but should be adopted and
adapted to make it appropriate for your organization

●● Do CSI – don’t be scared of it! Focus on CSI as soon as you start. It is sometimes looked at as a
future dream state but, as soon as an ITIL process is in place, it can be improved! Make it easy –
don’t overcomplicate it

●● Make it real – explain and demonstrate how ITIL works in practice, bring the documentation and the
textbooks to life!

●● Excite your process owners – with the right people, right attitude, education and understanding, you
can’t go wrong!

TOP FIVE ITIL DON’T DO’S
●● Don’t forget about the business – keep the customer at the centre. It’s easy to forget that we exist for

them, and keeping them happy is the aim of the game

●● Don’t get bogged down with paperwork – make the process documents easy to digest and not
theoretical – make it real

●● Don’t bombard people with ITIL jargon – if you are excited by ITIL, it’s easy to talk about the CSIs
for SACM’s KPIs, but some of your stakeholders who you are trying to excite and empower might
feel alienated

●● Don’t assume you’re going to get it right the first time – even CSI needs CSIs. We’ve taken our
improvement process through CSI just recently, there is always improvements needed, whatever the
maturity of your processes and organization

●● Don’t stop believing – don’t give up when it gets tough or when there is resistance, keep the
momentum going – it is worth it in the end.

4

Essex County Council8

About AXELOS
AXELOS is a joint venture company, created by the Cabinet Office on behalf of Her Majesty’s
Government (HMG) in the United Kingdom and Capita plc to run the Global Best Practice portfolio.
It boasts and already enviable track record and an unmatched portfolio of products, including ITIL®,
PRINCE2®, and RESILIA™ – the new Cyber Resilience Best Practice portfolio.

Used in the private, public and voluntary sectors in more than 180 countries worldwide, the Global
Best Practice products have long been associated with achievement, heightened standards and truly
measurable improved quality.

AXELOS has an ambitious programme of investment for developing innovative new solutions, and
stimulating the growth of a vibrant, open international ecosystem of training, consultancy and
examination organizations.

Developments to the portfolio also include the launch of PRINCE2 Agile™, the ITIL Practitioner
qualification and a Professional Development programme, fully aligned to AXELOS Global Best Practice,
for practitioners.

Latest news about how AXELOS is ‘Making organizations more effective’ and registration details to join
the online community can be found on the website www.AXELOS.com. If you have specific queries,
requests or would like to be added to the AXELOS mailing list please contact Ask@AXELOS.com.

Trade marks and statements
AXELOS, the AXELOS logo, the AXELOS swirl logo, ITIL, PRINCE2, MSP, M_o_R, P3M3, P3O,

MoP and MoV are registered trade marks of AXELOS Limited. PRINCE2 AgileTM and RESILIA™ are
registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited.

Reuse of any content in this Case Study is permitted solely in accordance with the permission terms at
https://www.axelos.com/policies/legal/permitted-use-of-white-papers-and-case-studies.
A copy of these terms can be provided on application to AXELOS at Licensing@AXELOS.com.

Essex County Council logo is used with permission.

© Copyright AXELOS.

Our Case Study series should not be taken as constituting advice of any sort and no liability is accepted
for any loss resulting from use of or reliance on its content. While every effort is made to ensure the
accuracy and reliability of the information, AXELOS cannot accept responsibility for errors, omissions
or inaccuracies. Content, diagrams, logos, and jackets are correct at time of going to press but may be
subject to change without notice.

Sourced and published on www.AXELOS.com.

Calculator

Calculate the price of your paper

Total price:$26
Our features

We've got everything to become your favourite writing service

Need a better grade?
We've got you covered.

Order your paper