Friday, 2 December 2011

ITIL is dead. Long live ITIL.

Isn’t it about time the idea of publishing best practice books was killed off.  It’s an inherently flawed idea.  Yes, the books have served a lot of organizations well - but like any book it’s out of date as soon as it’s printed.  Yes, it gets updated, but not often enough.


People seem to be drifting away from ITIL and I think this is because it’s presented in the wrong format for the dynamic world we live in.  When will we see a collaborative, expert-moderated ITIL Wiki representing up-to date best practices?

Where a book suffers from a page limit and thus a scope limit, wikis are free to grow and branch out to solve some of the limitations of the ITIL books - like covering more prescriptive best practices for each of the industry verticals.  If ITIL is to survive, it needs to be made more valuable, accessible and pragmatic.

"Hang on, I'll check what ITIL has to say about it"


  1. I wrote a response to this article here...

  2. What a blog hijacker! Writes a response on a competitive company blog, rips Axios, and then provides links to their tool.

    Not cool.

    Great writeup by the way. I agree 100% that ITIL should be a wiki. Books for this type of thing are so wrong. However there is so much $$$ tied up on this that it will be interesting to see how protective the owners are.

  3. Blog hijacking aside (his blog does sit on a vendor website, so it's not too surprising), I am pleased that there is some groundswell with the principle that the ITIL books are an outdated concept, and I think it's definitely worthwhile trying to get more people behind the concept of an industry-driven wiki.

    Does the industry need the owners of ITIL to be involved? Absolutely not. Otherwise we'll end up with a paid membership system to access it. It needs to be open, but also moderated.

    In fact, I would say it's time ITIL was renamed as it represents legacy thinking. Even Sharon Taylor pointed out that it may be time to drop IT from ITSM to bring the focus around to business service management. Using the word 'Infrastructure' in the title smacks of the old-school IT's obsession with grey boxes - no longer relevant when cloud options are on the table. That just leaves 'Library' - which is also irrelevant if ITIL was no longer in printed form.

    How about Service Management Practitioner Resource 'SMPR' to replace the 'ITIL' name? Semper is latin for 'always', so would represent the always-changing nature of a wiki.

    I set up a LinkedIn poll to gauge what the industry thinks: