Standardization of recording of Decisions within the process

Discussion on issues related directly or largely to ITIL problem management.
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Boydness
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Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:36 am

Looking to standardize the recording of the Decisions within the process.

We have several dozen Service Desks that we are bringing under a standardized process, previously they had their own implementations of the process due to the unique nature of the application/service customer, the Program Management Office's (PMO) requirements, SLAs, cascaded service desks, user base, etc.
They existed in their own bubbles for years/decades, so it has been a culture shift for most. Some have even managed to expertly resist the assimilation since standardization efforts began several years ago. The intent is to remove the gaps/loopholes that they utilize to defeat the efforts of properly following the process. At this time, we are re-writing all guidance, SOPs, etc.

The 'Valid Problem Decision' seems to the first major sticking point for a few, whereas they use a single gatekeeper to provide the "Yes" (almost always a "No") to the Valid Problem Decision prior to actually following any of the Problem Management process. Coincidentally, they have a very poor track record documenting any of the blatantly obvious problems and essentially preventing most all of the problem initiation inputs. Subsequently, they fail to document the criteria that was considered, the data/information that was utilized to perform the decision, the decision itself, and seem to expertly deflect attempts at oversight.

The first key to this issue is the lack of following the process and proper documenting prior to the first decision points, involving relating incidents, attributing to an existing problem, etc.

Historically, there was only criteria to be utilized to make the 'Valid Problem Decision', not a formal document that recorded which criteria was considered and what the decision outcome was 'Valid' or 'Invalid' and which parties were engaged to offer input into the decision.

Typically, we may have a situation where Business indicates that the reporting of an incident(s) suggests to them that we should consider the situation for problem management review, but maybe due to a lack of resources, lack of understanding, and/or a political reason there is resistance to documenting the problem. And because of the dynamics of the situation, there exists an ability for the Problem Process to be side-stepped, while allowing the failure to initiate/document a problem to avoid the correct accountability. They are the Telfon Dons.
All previous efforts to resolve this through other means (personnel change, training, etc.) have been unsuccessful.
The Borg would not be able to assimilate these folks...

The current intent would be to clearly document and identify the obstacle(s) to employing the process properly within that specific Service Desk and/or application/service by recording the Decisions formally. Especially useful, when we have to again explain why the applicable metrics are so skewed and/or senior management inquires if we have any related problem investigations for which to possibly attribute the incidents.

Has anyone had to go to such lengths of defining a formal document to record the decisions of the stakeholders related to the 'Valid Problem Decision'? 96% of the Service Desks have no real difficulty properly validating Problems, it is just a couple of rogue locations with one having considerable visibility.

If you have formal Decision documents, do you use them for all Decisions? If so, what worked best, a single document for all Decisions or single documents for each Decision? Not all stakeholders have access to the ticketing system, so we would have the document attached to the record. We are leaning towards a single document for all Decisions, but are unsure of the potential pitfalls that might be related to that course.



Boydness


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Diarmid
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Sat Aug 11, 2012 6:11 am

Presumably, budgetary controls are not at a suitable level to help with this. But have you thought of extracting the cost of additional incidents from their wages? :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
"Method goes far to prevent trouble in business: for it makes the task easy, hinders confusion, saves abundance of time, and instructs those that have business depending, both what to do and what to hope."
William Penn 1644-1718
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Boydness
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Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:39 am

Diarmid wrote:Presumably, budgetary controls are not at a suitable level to help with this. But have you thought of extracting the cost of additional incidents from their wages? :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
Unfortunately, it is not an option, but it would probably significantly alter the dynamics.

We still have not figured out how to best implement decision recording, especially when starting at the Valid Problem Decision, it overly complicates the process and the documenting would quickly become overly taxing.


Boydness
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