Category Archives: ITIL

5 Ways to Understand Your Applications and IT Services

How do you view your organization’s applications and IT services? At GreenPages, we often suggest that organizations begin to conceptualize IT services as corporate IT evolves from a technology provider to an innovation center. Now, there are ways to establish and maintain a service portfolio through ITBM (IT Business Management or IT Financial Management) systems, but these are often out of reach for customers less than enterprise level. However, you can conceptualize IT services by looking at your applications from five different perspectives. Let’s use Microsoft Exchange as an example.

applications and IT servicesExchange is an enterprise application that provides email and calendaring. If you’re reading this, there is a good chance that you own servers that host the various components that comprise Exchange. One way to think about cloud is to identify the Exchange servers, their operating systems, the application version, performance requirements, etc. and identify a “place in the cloud” where you can procure servers of similar specifications and migrate the instances. I consider this as the infrastructure perspective. When it comes to cloud computing, this is perhaps the least important.


To take full advantage of cloud computing, understand your applications and IT services from a few additional perspectives:

  1. Functional
  2. Financial
  3. Operational (including lifecycle)
  4. Organizational
  5. Use-case


Hopefully, after looking at these different perspectives, you’ll see Exchange as part of an IT service that fits this description:

“In operation for over 20 years, E-Communications is a business service that allows each of our 1,200 employees to communicate through email, coordinate meetings, find coworkers’ contact information, and organize tasks using their PC, Mac, mobile device, or home computer 24x7x365. The service is supported by Microsoft Exchange and Active Directory, which both run under VMware vSphere. The service requires 1 full-time administrator who added 12 new users and logged 157 support tickets in 2014. In 2014, charges for software maintenance, personnel, infrastructure depreciation, and outside support services totaled $87,456. A software upgrade is planned for 2015. Users do not generally complain about the performance of the service, other than the size of their mailbox quotas (which are limited to 10GB per user). The company as a whole plans to offer telecommuting packages to more than 250 employees in 2015.”

Armed with this understanding of your IT service that includes Exchange, you might take the following action:

  1. Fund an Office365 migration with capital you had allocated for the Exchange upgrade project
  2. Provide copies of Office applications to telecommuters (without additional charge)
  3. Expand the mailbox quota from 10GB to 50GB
  4. Repurpose your Exchange admin to help telecommuters establish their home offices in 2015
  5. Reduce your spend on E-Communications by more than 50% (from $72.88/user to $35.00/user)


Of course, not every application is easily identifiable as belonging to an IT service. The functionality or financial aspects of IT services are often difficult to quantify. However, at GreenPages, especially when looking at cloud computing options, we recommend examining all of your applications through these five perspectives. For this reason, GreenPages has embedded this process in a piece of software that can quickly build your services portfolio and recommend optimizations based on current offerings available – such as Microsoft Office 365.

What are your thoughts?

You can hear more from John in his eBook, “The Evolution of Your Corporate IT Department

By John Dixon, Director of Cloud Services

PMP Meets ITIL and Says, “YES!”

By Brian Shaw, PMP, ITIL Foundations, LogicsOne

Successful IT project management professionals are making continuing education the norm. Neither IT ecosystems nor the tools for managing projects are static, and as a result, we must actively build skills to evolve with business needs. Furthermore, by achieving certifications we demonstrate competency within the marketplace.

The first certification you need as a project manager is your PMP, Project Management Professional certification (For more information visit The body of knowledge for a PMP certification, often referred to by PMBOK ®, provides a framework for: initiating, planning, executing, controlling and closing projects. This framework provides a common language, set of expectations and guidance for project success. GreenPages-LogicsOne has made PMP certified project managers the standard to ensure consistency and excellence in project management.

Recently a peer recommended I attain the ITIL Foundations certification. ITIL stands for IT Infrastructure Library and provides an approach to IT service management. ITIL offers structure and processes for: Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition, Service Operation and Continual Service Improvement.

A certification, such as ITIL, for ongoing services may seem like an odd choice for a PMP accustomed to managing projects with a fixed scope and duration, however upon closer review you will discover an ITIL certification fits perfectly with project management. While ongoing services are different from projects the implementation of new or changed services are typically achieved by projects.

New services are brought to life in service transition. Projects in service transition interface with the other stages of the ITIL lifecycle to ensure the vision from service strategy, as outlined in service design, comes to life in service operation. Additionally, opportunities to improve services as identified in the continual service improvement ITIL stage may also become projects.

The ITIL Foundations certification has many benefits to project management professionals practicing within a service organization. Those benefits include:

  • Shared Terminology: Engineers and operations staff may not always know project management terminology, however they are familiar with terms such as incident management, SLA, etc. The knowledge required to gain an ITIL Foundations certification will ensure you are familiar with the same terms as people in the service organization. This shared dictionary goes a long way towards avoiding confusion.
  • Outcome Based Action: Projects should deliver a specific result, as should the transition stage within ITIL.
  • Clarifying Roles & Responsibilities: This is a huge benefit for project managers. Have you ever been on a call, trying to assign a task and either nobody volunteers or you don’t know who the owner should be? If yes, then ITIL is a great fit for you. ITIL delineates responsibilities by roles which fit nicely into project plans.
  • Project Success: The ITIL strategy for building new services has proven successful since originally conceived in the 1980s by the British government. What project manager doesn’t love successful strategies?
  • Professional Development Units (PDUs): Already a PMP? If yes, then you are required to attain 60 PDUs for each certification renewal cycle. ITIL courses and the certification can be used for PDUs. For the exact number of PDUs allowed with your course, check with your ITIL program provider and PMI.

Each project manager has a responsibility for continuing education. The ITIL Foundations certification demonstrates familiarity with knowledge certain to contribute to your overall project success.


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