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Using IT Service Management (ITSM) in Non-Production

APR, 2023

by Jane Temov.

 

Author Jane Temov

Jane Temov is an IT Environments Evangelist at Enov8, specializing in IT and Test Environment Management, Test Data Management, Data Security, Disaster Recovery, Release Management, Service Resilience, Configuration Management, DevOps, and Infrastructure/Cloud Migration. Jane is passionate about helping organizations optimize their IT environments for maximum efficiency.

IT Service Management (ITSM) is a framework that helps organizations manage their IT services by aligning them with the needs of the business. ITSM is a holistic approach that covers all aspects of service management, including planning, design, implementation, operation, and continuous improvement. ITSM is widely used in production environments to ensure that IT services are delivered efficiently and effectively, but its benefits can also be realized in non-production environments.

Non-production environments are typically used for software development, testing, and training. These environments can be complex and dynamic, and they often involve multiple teams and stakeholders. The use of ITSM in non-production environments can help organizations overcome the challenges of managing these environments and ensure that IT services are delivered in a consistent and predictable manner.

 

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In this post, we will explore the benefits of using ITSM in non-production environments and provide guidance on how to implement ITSM in these environments. We will also outline best practices for ITSM in non-production environments to help organizations achieve their service management goals.

 

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Why Use ITSM in Non-Production

IT Service Management (ITSM) is a set of practices used to manage IT services from development to delivery and support. ITSM practices are particularly beneficial in non-production environments, such as testing, development, and staging. Non-production environments are crucial for providing high-quality software and IT services, and they often involve complex infrastructure and multiple teams.

These environments offer opportunities for experimentation, training, innovation, and process improvement. However, managing non-production environments can be challenging due to their dynamic and complex nature, involving multiple teams and stakeholders, each with their requirements and priorities.

Implementing ITSM practices in non-production environments can address these challenges by standardizing processes, improving communication and collaboration, and establishing metrics and KPIs to measure performance and identify areas for improvement. Consequently, organizations can increase efficiency, reduce risk, and enhance innovation in non-production environments.

Service Management is #7 on the Enov8 Environment Framework

Lean Service Management

Implementing ITSM in Non-Production

Implementing IT Service Management (ITSM) in non-production environments requires thorough planning and execution. To ensure success, organizations should follow these steps:

  • Identify key stakeholders, including development, testing, and operations teams, to tailor the ITSM framework to the non-production environment.
  • Define the scope of the implementation, including standardizing processes and procedures, selecting ITSM tools, and defining metrics and KPIs to measure performance.
  • Map out ITSM processes to the non-production environment, integrating the framework with existing workflows and procedures.
  • Select appropriate ITSM tools, considering factors such as ease of use, system integration, and scalability. Popular options include ServiceNow, JIRA Service Management, Enov8, and BMC Helix ITSM.
  • Define metrics and KPIs to measure success, such as MTTR, change success rate, and customer satisfaction, to identify areas for improvement and optimize the non-production environment.

The Key ITSM Processes to Implement

Some of the key processes that you might implement as part of Lean ITSM in non-production environments include:

  • Incident Management: Incident management involves the identification, analysis, and resolution of incidents in non-production environments. By implementing ITSM processes for incident management, organizations can quickly and efficiently resolve issues, reducing downtime and ensuring high-quality IT services.
  • Change Management: Change management involves the planning, approval, and implementation of changes to non-production environments. By implementing ITSM processes for change management, organizations can ensure that changes are implemented correctly and that the impact on IT services is minimized.
  • Environment Request Ticketing: One important aspect of implementing Lean ITSM in non-production environments is implementing processes for managing environment requests, such as requests for user access, test user creation management, batch processing, and test data management.
  • Release Management: Release management involves the planning, scheduling, and deployment of software releases to non-production environments. By implementing ITSM processes for release management, organizations can ensure that software releases are tested and deployed correctly, reducing the risk of errors or issues in production environments.
  • Configuration Management: Configuration management involves the identification, tracking, and management of configuration items (CIs) in non-production environments. By implementing ITSM processes for configuration management, organizations can ensure that CIs are tracked and managed effectively, reducing the risk of errors and issues in production environments. Refer #1 “Knowledge Management” in the Enov8 Framework.
  • Service Level Management: Service level management involves defining, agreeing on, monitoring, and reporting service levels for IT services in non-production environments. By implementing ITSM processes for service level management, organizations can ensure that IT services are delivered according to agreed-upon levels, and that service quality is maintained over time.

By implementing these key ITSM processes in non-production environments, organizations can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of IT services, reducing risk and enhancing innovation in the process.

Enov8 Service Management Screenshot

Enov8 Service Management Screenshot

Best Practices for ITSM in Non-Production

Consider these best practices for implementing IT Service Management (ITSM) in non-production environments:

A. Foster Communication and Collaboration

Collaboration and communication between teams are critical for effective ITSM implementation in non-production environments. Teams should work together to identify and prioritize IT services and establish clear channels of communication to ensure everyone is on the same page. Tools like Slack, Trello, and JIRA can facilitate communication and streamline teamwork.

B. Establish Governance and Control

Governance and control are crucial for managing non-production environments. Organizations should establish policies and procedures for access control, change management, and security. This can help ensure that non-production environments are secure and that changes are made in a controlled and documented manner. ITIL is a framework that can help organizations establish best practices for ITSM governance and control.

C. Standardize and Automate

Standardizing processes and automating procedures can help organizations improve efficiency and reduce the risk of errors and delays. Automation tools like Puppet, Chef, and Ansible can streamline repetitive tasks and save time and effort required to manage non-production environments. Standardizing processes and automating tasks can free up resources to focus on innovation and process improvement.

D. Continuously Improve

Continuous improvement is a critical principle of ITSM. Organizations should establish metrics and KPIs to measure the effectiveness of their ITSM processes and identify areas for improvement. This can help organizations make data-driven decisions to optimize their non-production environments and improve the overall effectiveness of their IT operations. Regular reviews and audits can also identify opportunities for improvement and ensure that ITSM processes are being followed effectively.

By adhering to these best practices, organizations can optimize their non-production environments and achieve their ITSM objectives. Effective communication and collaboration, governance and control, standardization and automation, and continuous improvement are vital for successful ITSM implementation in non-production environments.

Conclusion

In conclusion, implementing ITSM in non-production environments can help organizations improve their service management practices, standardize processes, and establish metrics to identify areas for improvement. The use of Enov8’s Service Management module, which is part of the Enov8 Platform, can streamline the process of raisinging incidents & requesting and approving changes in non-production environments, reducing the risk of errors and delays.

While implementing ITSM in non-production environments requires careful planning and coordination, the benefits are significant, including improved efficiency, reduced risk, and increased innovation. By optimizing their non-production environments, organizations can deliver higher quality IT services and improve the overall effectiveness of their IT operations.

We encourage organizations to explore the resources available online and consult with ITSM experts to learn more about how to implement ITSM in non-production environments. With the right strategies and tools, organizations can unlock the full potential of their non-production environments and drive digital transformation in their operations.

Other TEM Reading

Interested in reading more about Test Environment Management. Why not start here:

Enov8 Blog: Controlling Environment Costs

Enov8 Blog: Standard Operating Procedures

Enov8 Blog: TEM Explained

 

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