Supporting Service Delivery

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Few responsible enterprise managers would dispute the value of IT services. On the other hand, the reader may find little agreement within his or her business about what those services should be and how much line-of-business colleagues must pay for them. More often than not, the heroics of IT services providers on the shop floor and the small, day-to-day victories of IT-enabled business process change never reach the eyes and ears of management colleagues. As Chapter 4 explains, the disconnects in understanding occur throughout the delivery process, from initial expectation setting to an agreement on appropriate measures, and from the regular reporting of results to annual reviews of customer satisfaction.

High-level service relations (i.e., between IT and the leadership of an enterprise operating unit) should be handled by an IT executive. This person must be properly staffed to deal with his or her customer, including a detailed service history and issues for each account. Similarly, the modeling of performance measures, tracking of results, and compilation of monthly, quarterly, and annual reports are all necessary components of the service management process. Those on the line are too busy to carry out such work. Furthermore, customers are less likely to be frank with the party actually delivering the service under review. Here again, the process expertise of the PMO and its IT-wide perspective, as well as its separate organizational identity from that of service delivery teams, positions the PMO to provide such support.

From the standpoint of self-management, the mechanisms of PMO service delivery support will strengthen the sense of ownership and personal responsibility within your service teams. The mechanisms employed clearly link IT services to those served and detail the measures of customer satisfaction. By employing these metrics and sharing the results broadly within IT, the PMO reinforces IT's commitment to quality service delivery and calls out those who are letting down their side. When the process also embraces constructive responses to breakdowns in performance, such as internal process reengineering and the replacement of faulty hardware and software, these activities can transform the very culture of the IT organization.

Furthermore, customers will take note of these activities. Their first reaction will be that IT really cares about service delivery. This realization alone can do wonders for the relationship between IT and its business customers. As the process matures, opportunities will arise for engaging your end users in these continuous improvement efforts. For example, the data generated from metrics may suggest a need to invest in more customer training or in desktop system upgrades. Partnering in the area of service improvement will only strengthen the bond between IT and the lines of business, which in turn will make them more receptive to working with you on larger projects down the road. Here again, the PMO can play a critical role in the success of the process. Although the main actors may be your CREs on the one hand and your service delivery teams on the other, the PMO supports both constituencies. See Exhibit 2.

Exhibit 2: The PMO ROI — Service Delivery

start example

Value/Cost Categories

Amount of Financial Benefit/Non-PMO IT Costs

IT Costs Avoidance Associated with Service Delivery Risk Mitigation

IT Costs Avoidance Associated with Project Delivery Risk Mitigation

PMO Investments in Services and Risk Mitigation

Outcomes (Net Value of Positive Outcomes and Risk Avoidance Less PMO Costs)


Service Level Management

Customer Group A






Template preparation


Process management






end example

First, the PMO is positioned as a clearinghouse for service level information. This is a complex, highly detailed, cross-enterprise task. Your delivery teams will not have the time, the interest, the perspective, or perhaps the skills to do this work on their own. Second, the PMO enjoys enough distance from the services in question to identify and collect data on the true measures of customer satisfaction. Third, because in all likelihood it will manage both the historical knowledge base of activity and the forms and processes for SLA creation and delivery metrication, the PMO is positioned to act quickly and effectively in support of IT management.

Although service delivery management requires constant care and feeding by the PMO, the return on this investment is huge as measured in terms of the quality and strength of IT's relations with its customers and the coherence of the organization's service offerings as perceived by end users. Lastly, any consideration of the value of the PMO in this area must also recognize the substantial benefits its work will engender across IT. By highlighting the value chain in service delivery, the PMO will encourage better teamwork, collaboration, and heightened sensitivity to the needs of end users. Thus, by adding considerable rigor to the service delivery process, the PMO will strengthen internal IT operations and the relationship between the enterprise and IT service delivery teams.

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The Hands-On Project Office(c) Guaranteeing ROI and On-Time Delivery
E-Commerce Security: Advice from Experts (IT Solutions series)
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2006
Pages: 132 © 2008-2017.
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