ITILv3: Does it warrant an upgrade in your IT shop?

* What ITIL Version 3 offers

Early this decade U.S. IT shops discovered the best practice framework ITIL, and adoption of the British-born process improvements took off stateside. And earlier this year the second generation of the framework was updated to ITIL Version 3, which brought more security management and business savvy into the IT-centric tools -- a response ITIL owners say to the pressing demand IT organizations face to align with the business.

Yet recent survey results from IDC show that about two-thirds of folks that have gotten involved with ITIL aren't sure if the latest version is on their agenda in the next three years. Separate survey results released following Interop New York this fall revealed that the topic of process frameworks was not resonating as much with the 100 attendees polled at the show. Sixty percent of respondents said ITIL and CDMB (configuration management databases are laid out in ITIL) projects were of middle to low importance, and although 38% plan to implement some sort of solution in the next year, close to 50% had no plans.

Many of these organizations have committed time and energy to ITILv2 and other process frameworks to improve upon their IT service management strategy (compare products in our Network Monitoring and Management Buyer's Guide here), but maybe aren't sure the differences in ITILv3 warrant an overhaul to their ongoing efforts.

This week I attended an IDC event and posted a couple of stories related to discussions there. Marv Waschke, vice president of development and senior technology strategist in the CA Business Service Optimization business unit, commented on a story and shared what he feels ITIL adoption is facing. Waschke also managed development of the CA service desk product. According to Waschke, the move from ITILv3 from the previous version will not represent as large of a shift if organizations have already begun the journey to process improvements.

"In my experience, V2 was the watershed for ITIL. Before V2, only the Europeans and a few of the largest and most forward looking shops wanted to talk ITIL. With V2, interest in North America went mainstream. Underneath it all, was a paradigm shift: IT practitioners began to realize that with ITIL they no longer need to re-invent the wheel every day as they evolve their practices," Waschke writes. "V3 is not a paradigm shift of that magnitude."

What do you think? Is there enough new and useful information in ITILv3 to warrant an upgrade to plans for process improvements? Let me know or share your thoughts here

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