Looking at Some Important Roles in ITIL
Knowing who does what is essential to the success of ITIL. You benefit from knowing a few really important roles from the outset of your interaction with ITIL.
The service owner
The service owner owns a service. The service owner is usually someone in the IT provider organisation, and the role provides a point of contact for a given service. The service owner doesn’t necessarily know everything about the service, but he does know a man (or woman) who does.
Here are some responsibilities of the service owner role:
Participates in internal service review meetings
Represents the service across the organisation
Represents the service in change advisory board meetings
Is responsible for continual improvement of the service and management of change in the service
Understands the service and its components
The process owner
A process owner owns a process. This role is accountable for the process. For example, if the incident management process doesn’t achieve its aim of restoring the service to the user, the process owner gets shouted at (hopefully not literally). The process owner is accountable for the process and is responsible for identifying improvements to ensure that the process continues to be effective and efficient. Here are a few responsibilities of the role:
Ensuring that the process is performed in accordance with the agreed and documented process
Documenting and publicising the process
Defining and reviewing the measurement of the process using metrics such as key performance indicators (KPIs)
You must ensure that every service management process you adopt has a defined process owner.
The process manager
A process owner (see the previous section) is accountable for the process, but may not get involved in the day-to-day management of the process. This is a separate role often allocated to a different person: the process manager.
A process manager is responsible for operational management of a process. The process manager’s responsibilities include planning and coordination of all activities required to carry out, monitor and report on the process.
One process may have several process managers, for example it may have regional change managers or IT service continuity managers for each data centre.
You must ensure that every service management process that you adopt has a defined process manager – though this may, of course, be the same person as the process owner.
The process practitioner
The process practitioner is the role that carries out one or many of the process activities. Basically, these people are the ones who do the work. However, it’s important that they have a clear list of responsibilities related to the process that they get involved in.