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An Overview of IBM Service Management

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  • Ramachandran
    An Overview of IBM Service Management Source: IBM Systems Journal By Ganek, A Kloeckner, K Information technology has become a key enabler for businesses in a
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 31, 2007
      An Overview of IBM Service Management
      Source: IBM Systems Journal


      By Ganek, A Kloeckner, K
      Information technology has become a key enabler for businesses in a
      wide variety of sectors (such as banking and health care) and is
      increasingly used to deliver their services. For these businesses,
      service excellence is increasingly a competitive differentiator, as
      customers need to rapidly adapt to changing conditions in the
      marketplace and create and deploy new services quickly and
      efficiently. However, service excellence can only be achieved
      through effective and efficient service management. IBM Service
      Management is an initiative to help businesses increase the
      efficiency and effectiveness of their services over the complete
      life cycle of service creation, deployment, and operations. IBM is
      bringing together the capabilities of its hardware, software, and
      consulting services organizations to help customers design, build,
      deploy, and manage these business services. IBM is also working
      closely with business partners and industry standards organizations
      to make this an industry-wide initiative. In this paper, we describe
      IBM Service Management and its role in improving all aspects of
      business services. INTRODUCTION

      With the rapid growth of information technology (IT) as an enabler
      for businesses, companies in all industries increasingly depend upon
      its power for competitive advantage and business growth. This
      dependency has evolved significantly from the initial use of the
      mainframe to perform well-defined, repetitive "back office"
      activities, such as invoicing, inventory control, or payroll, to the
      expectation today that business services will be delivered over the
      Internet, making them accessible at any time and anywhere in a
      globally integrated fashion. In this new era, the concept of a
      business service is itself evolving. There are many views among
      analysts, vendors, and customers about what constitutes a business
      service. We define a business service as a value delivered to any
      customer, partner, or user by applying a group of IT and non-IT
      assets that together provide a comprehensive, end-to-end business
      process, transaction, or product.

      The quality of IT-enabled business services is a key factor in
      customer retention, because competition is omnipresent. At the same
      time, as shown in Figure 1, the complexity of the infrastructure
      needed to deliver these IT-enabled business services has been
      increasing rapidly. The IT presence and function of a company can
      sometimes extend into the customer's location, allowing the
      customers of the company to view product information, order goods
      and services, track shipments, and pay bills over the Internet.

      To support these business services and the processes behind them,
      the IT organization now collects, controls, and helps analyze large
      amounts of data, which may influence the future direction of the
      business. Data-mining practices have helped companies increase
      market share, identify new market opportunities, and optimize
      business processes. Increasingly, IT is involved in the relationship
      of a business with other businesses. Order and supply relationships
      are established and controlled, invoices are issued and paid, and
      collaborative projects are created and executed, all as needed
      through the use of IT resources. The process of transforming
      businesses to operate in this way has been called the transition
      to "on demand" business.2

      An on demand business requires alignment and optimization of its
      technological infrastructure with the demands of its business
      design. People, information, and processes need to be integrated,
      and often the IT infrastructure becomes an impediment to rapid
      adaptation to new business challenges. The following are some of the
      key challenges faced by businesses in their transformation:

      * Complexity-The root cause of the problems IT organizations face
      lies in the dramatic increase of business complexity due to
      heterogeneity of environments and the interconnection of
      applications (composite applications). Architectural and
      organizational issues, accelerating the proliferation of composite
      applications and hardware entities, and worldwide operations
      spanning multiple time zones all contribute to reducing the
      efficiency and effectiveness of the IT organization.

      * Change-Complexity makes for very brittle, hard-to-manage
      infrastructures that often break under change and whose management
      requires a discipline that few customers achieve without flaws.
      Increasing workloads, more stringent service-level assurance
      requirements, staff turnover, and new market opportunities all lead
      to pressure for change in the IT organization. Change is the leading
      cause of service or application disruption today, and it often
      results in visible business impact. In fact, our experience suggests
      that nearly 80 percent of all critical outages can be traced to
      faulty change management.

      * Cost-Currently, operational IT labor cost constitutes almost 70
      percent of the total IT budget of businesses.3 In the late 1990s,
      half of the IT labor budget was devoted to new application
      development and half was devoted to operations. As IT budgets have
      been held flat, the chief information officers (CIOs) of IT
      organizations have faced two unappealing choices: shift resources
      from new application development or reduce the level of support for
      current applications. Both options serve to reduce the efficiency
      and effectiveness of IT.

      * Governance and compliance-The introduction of government
      regulations, such as the SarbanesOxley Act (SOX)4 and the Health
      Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)5, have put an
      additional burden on the IT organization to support the needs of the
      business to audit for compliance through the institution of better
      process controls and the maintenance of audit trails for IT
      infrastructure changes. This requires careful consideration because
      of the penalties of noncompliance, including criminal and civil
      liabilities and adverse public opinion.

      EVOLUTION TO IT-ENABLED SERVICE MANAGEMENT

      The challenges previously described are moving the relationship
      between the business unit and the IT organization from one of
      customer and technology provider to one of partners in applying
      technology to address business needs in a financially responsible
      manner. A new working relationship aligning the IT organization with
      the needs of the business is the major theme of the IBM Service
      Management approach to IT management.6 The IBM Service Management
      methodology advocates managing the IT organization as a business.
      Though an IT organization may be operating entirely within the
      confines of a single company, the IBM Service Management approach
      recommends that it conduct its management by defining its market or
      its customers and the customer's needs or requirements and
      developing solutions or services to meet those needs.

      As the IT organization works with its newly defined business- unit
      customers to identify their needs at a business level, consistent
      patterns of requirements typically emerge. Examples of such common
      patterns are the need to develop, deploy, and manage software
      applications in support of business services, manage security,
      backup, and recovery, and provide network services. At this level,
      many business-unit needs may become common and can be satisfied
      through the creation of common IT services. Once realized through
      the necessary hardware and software elements, these services can be
      made available in a service catalog that can be accessed by business
      units with IT requirements. As the selection of standard offerings
      grows, the need for special projects decreases. The service catalog
      provides, as a secondary benefit, an easy reference for the services
      that the IT organization provides and by inference, those it does
      not provide. This operating model improves the capability of the IT
      organization to be fiscally responsible; it includes the costs of
      providing standard services and can assist in identifying and
      negotiating requirements that are not addressed by standard
      services.

      Once standard services can be offered on a repeatable basis, metrics
      can be developed to measure efficiency and cost in providing the
      services. These metrics can be used to continually provide insights
      into areas where service costs can be decreased, efficiency in
      delivery increased, and service quality improved. Technology-
      related metrics (such as processor speed or memory) can be replaced
      by business-relevant metrics related to the services provided (such
      as end-to-end cycle time to provide a service and the number of
      requests handled every quarter) . Standard services and the metrics
      and controls put in place to support their delivery also aid in
      supporting audits and compliance with government regulations. If a
      large percentage of IT operations are based on standard services
      (and exceptions are handled in a prescribed manner), many of the
      checks and balances, roles and responsibilities, and metrics
      required for auditing will be inherent or will easily be created in
      the infrastructure.

      IBM SERVICE MANAGEMENT STRATEGY

      The goals of the IBM Service Management strategy are to do the
      following:

      1. Take advantage of the years of industry and domain expertise of
      several thousand practition- ers in the areas of ITIL** (Information
      Technology Infrastructure Library**),7,8 eTOM** (Enhanced
      Telecommunications Operations Map**),9 COBIT** (Control Objectives
      for Information and Related Technology),10 and CMMI** (Capability
      Maturity Model Integration)11 and technologies like service-oriented
      architecture (SOA) and autonomic computing to define best practices
      for service management. 2. Create an integrated approach to service
      management for development and operations teams, addressing the full
      life cycle of a service, from concept to full production.

      3. Create an architecture for organizational and task automation
      consistent with SOA principles, based on a service management
      platform that allows for the integration of people, processes,
      information, and technology into a coherent, integrated runtime.

      4. Invest in autonomic-computing technologies to improve automation
      and reduce the need for human involvement in repetitive and mundane
      tasks.

      5. Create an adoption model and deployment reference architecture to
      help customers deploy service management in an incremental way.

      6. Create and drive standards in the area of service management.

      Achievement of these goals would result in an agile and adaptable
      business with a means for the clear expression of its services. The
      following sections explain in more detail the elements of this
      strategy.

      Taking advantage of industry expertise

      One of the key success criteria for service management is to ensure
      a comprehensive and cohesive view of the entire service- management
      life cycle. To do this, IBM has taken advantage of the expertise of
      field practitioners to create a consolidated and comprehensive
      perspective on service management. This is documented in the IBM
      Process Reference Model for IT (PRM-IT)6 for process and
      organizational components, and the Common Data Model12 for resources
      and data components. Figure 2 provides an overview of the solution
      areas covered by PRM-IT.

      Content for PRM-IT is available through the IBM Rational Unified
      Process* and the IBM Tivoli* Unified Process, which cover both the
      solution development and operations disciplines of service
      management.

      The IBM integrated service-management approach

      IBM provides not only documentation of processes embodying best
      practices, but also a runtime environment in which these processes
      can be actualized in running applications that can be used by an
      organization on a day-to-day basis. Figure 3 shows the major
      components of this integrated service-management approach.

      Service management is enabled by two major focus areas: the creation
      and delivery of supporting software for IT-enabled business services
      and the delivery and support of these services in production. The
      first focus area, shown on the left side of Figure 3, is oriented
      toward improving the productivity and efficiency of geographically
      distributed teams within a development organization that need to
      collaborate with each other to create, manage, compile, and test
      changes to the source code of application software. Integrated
      change and configuration management of source code is needed to
      ensure that quality software is created and delivered to the
      operations team for deployment into production. Process management
      for software delivery involves requirements analysis and tracking,
      procedures for source code access, software test case management,
      and software-defect life-cycle management. Various process
      management applications are needed (e.g., Rational ClearCase*) to
      ensure that multiple developers and testers can efficiently record
      defects, update source code, compile and test the code, and close
      out defects in a timely and efficient manner.

      The second focus area, shown on the right side of Figure 3, is
      oriented toward delivering high-quality services with attention to
      service-level commitments, financial management, and business
      continuity while improving the productivity and efficiency of
      geographically distributed operations organizations managing
      multiple data centers worldwide. The service delivery teams deliver
      IT services with appropriate commitments to the business to ensure
      that all elements of the service satisfy business requirements. They
      also have to ensure that the architecture supports the required
      levels of "failover" and recovery to provide IT service continuity.
      Necessary software is developed internally or acquired from vendors.
      When the service is ready for deployment, the operations teams have
      to ensure that impacts are assessed, the appropriate stakeholders
      are notified, and the deployments to production servers are
      scheduled in the appropriate change windows. These functions are
      accomplished through a combination of process management products
      that focus on workflows which integrate multiple operations staff
      and operational management products. These products focus on the
      automation of specific tasks (e.g., service-level agreement
      management and software distribution) . All of this is centered on a
      service management platform that leverages a configuration
      management database (CMDB), a workflow runtime, and collaboration
      technologies.12-15

      SOA for service management

      A best-practice perspective of services is provided by the IBM SOA
      model.16 SOA provides a methodology and reference architecture for
      expressing business services to ensure that no matter how much their
      supporting systems and technologies may differ, services are able to
      interoperate. SOA makes it possible to share information not only
      throughout an enterprise but with customers, suppliers, and
      partners.

      As depicted on the left side of Figure 4, SOA supports business
      services during their entire life cycle by means of development
      services that facilitate service design, business services that
      improve operations and decision making with real-time business
      information, management services that monitor and manage business
      services and include capabilities that relate to scale and
      performance, and infrastructure services that optimize throughput,
      availability, and performance.

      The SOA reference architecture also contains a set of services that
      are oriented toward the integration of people, processes, and
      information: interaction services that provide the capabilities
      required to deliver IT functions and data to end users; process
      services that provide the control functions required to manage the
      flow and interactions of multiple services in ways that implement
      business processes; and information services that provide the
      capabilities required to federate, replicate, and transform data
      sources that may be implemented in a variety of ways.

      The reference architecture also contains a set of partner services
      that provide the document-, protocol-, and partner- management
      capabilities required for business processes that involve
      interactions with outside partners and suppliers; business
      application services that provide runtime services required for new
      application components to be included in the integrated system; and
      access services, which connect existing enterprise applications and
      enterprise data. Communication between SOA services is facilitated
      by the enterprise service bus, an architectural construct that
      offers interconnectivity.

      Depicted on the right side of Figure 4 is the innovative three-
      layer view of IBM Service Management comprising: (1) process-
      management capabilites, which are responsible for expressing higher-
      level organizationally oriented activities within a particular
      domain; (2) a service-management platform, which provides an
      integrated and modular service-management architecture; and (3)
      operational-management capabilities, which provide automation-
      friendly, lower-level resource control. This service-management
      viewpoint maps seamlessly with the SOA viewpoint, and, in fact, is
      an instantiation of SOA for the business of managing IT.

      The process-management layer uses service-management processes
      realized as service-management business Services and exploits, where
      needed, SOA process services. Service-management processes (e.g.,
      change and configuration management) are made available to services
      in other service-management domains, subject to typical
      authorization and request-refinement functions. Thus, a service
      request for additional storage within an enterprise may result in a
      change request to particular storage elements within the
      environment. Necessary process-management interactions that involve
      organizational interaction with external entities (e.g., network
      services provided by a wide area network carrier) can be
      accommodated by using partner services as needed.

      The ISM platform expresses SOA management services from a service-
      management perspective and can be both the receiver and provider of
      interaction services and information services. The platform provides
      not only a conduit for integrating service-management functionality
      within an explicitly recognized value proposition (e.g., change
      management), but also a common metadata-driven framework for cross-
      domain integration. The platform incorporates the IBM Change and
      Configuration Management Database (CCMDB), which reflects the
      technological elements of the infrastructure, their relationships,
      and current and desired states, and provides a means to share
      configuration data among diverse services and processes. Finally,
      the operational-management layer provides the opportunity for
      control and interaction, through SOA-conforming interfaces, of an
      extraordinarily rich set of capabilities to provide automated
      control of the managed environment.

      Taking advantage of autonomic computing

      Autonomic computing is one of the key technology initiatives for
      helping to reduce the cost and complexity of owning and operating
      the IT infrastructure. This initiative is directed toward maximizing
      the value that customers can achieve from IT investments by
      minimizing the operational burdens that are commonly associated with
      managing components, systems, networks, software, and derived
      information services. In an autonomic environment, IT infrastructure
      components (from desktop computers to mainframes and systems
      management software) are self-configuring, self-healing, self-
      optimizing, and self-protecting. These attributes are the core
      values of autonomic computing. IBM has been working with the IT
      industry to create autonomic technology conforming to the "monitor-
      analyze-plan-execute" architecture. Figure 5 shows how autonomic
      technology can be used to create autonomic behavior in virtualized
      resources and, at the same time, maintain a higher layer of IT
      management processes to control the behavior of these virtualized
      resources through policy and delegation.

      The efficiency and effectiveness of IT management processes are
      typically measured using metrics such as the elapsed time of a
      process, percentage of process executed correctly, skill
      requirements, and the average cost of service execution. Autonomic
      computing technology can help improve the efficiency and speed with
      which these processes can be implemented by automating some steps in
      the process and allowing the user to delegate routine tasks to the
      system to be performed automatically. Most IT management processes
      tend to be largely manual today, with a few automated steps. Within
      the context of delivering business processes, the goal of IBM
      Service Management is to enable customers to automate more and more
      of these processes. Initially, customers are not comfortable with
      trusting automation to take the correct actions. Over time, as the
      level of automation maturity and confidence improves, it should
      become easier for customers to delegate more and more routine tasks
      to automation. This is the road map for implementing autonomic
      behavior throughout the IT environment.

      To support this road map, IBM is including, as part of IBM Service
      Management, the capability to support progressive delegation to
      automation. Thus, tasks can initially be performed manually, and as
      the user becomes more comfortable with the automated assistance
      provided by the system, he or she can then choose to delegate those
      tasks to the system. This allows the system to perform those tasks
      on behalf of the user at the appropriate point in the process and to
      provide notifications and create the appropriate logs. With this
      approach, we ensure that the overall process is still being
      followed, even though more and more of the steps in that process are
      automated.

      Adoption model and deployment reference architecture

      To facilitate the adoption of service management, it is necessary
      for customers to have a clear idea of their current status and where
      they would like to go. The adoption model is a way to assist
      customers in making this assessment and in building their road map.
      Figure 6 shows one of the possible perspectives provided by the
      adoption model. In this perspective, the customer view of service-
      management adoption is organized along four management domains (IT
      business management, IT governance, IT development, and IT
      operations).

      The core value proposition of the IT business-management domain is
      IT-business alignment, including IT operations and IT development
      capabilities. The management capabilities in this domain include
      managing IT customer relationships, the IT direction, and IT
      administration.

      IT governance is both a framework and a life-cycle process. The core
      value proposition of IT governance is to provide clarity and
      transparency in directing and controlling the IT service management
      (ITSM) capability and in achieving desired behavior and business-
      aligned decision making within IT. IT governance includes managing
      the decision rights and accountability framework for directing,
      controlling, and executing ITSM. It also includes the governance
      life cycle-planning, designing, implementing, monitoring, assessing,
      and improving governance.

      The core value proposition of IT development is business-driven
      development. It includes managing the solution-development life
      cycle resulting in software delivery. The core value proposition of
      IT operations is managing operations from a service perspective.
      This domain includes managing IT deployment, IT service operations,
      and IT resilience.

      The different levels of adoption are shown along the bottom axis of
      the figure, with a progression from an environment with discrete IT
      silos to dynamic collaboration across organizations. The progression
      from level to level represents the most common approach to adopting
      service-management best practices and applying them for
      progressively more valuable purposes. The levels are cumulative-
      each level requires the continuation of effective capabilities from
      the previous levels.

      IBM is also creating deployment reference architectures to help
      customers deploy service-management solutions. These reference
      architectures codify the common patterns of service-management
      deployments and provide architecture, design, and code integration
      assets that help a customer deploy a particular combination of
      service-management products and integrate them with common third-
      party and vendor products in the customer's environment.

      Standards

      IBM Service Management is an open architecture that uses standards
      to foster integration. Our customers have legacy tools from multiple
      vendors and internal tools with which our solutions must be
      integrated. To facilitate this integration, IBM is actively working
      with standards bodies to promote infrastructure and content
      standards for service management as well as many open-source
      reference implementations. These initiatives span a wide array of
      topics, including the expression of policy, configuration
      information and interchange formats, application-artifact
      descriptions, event formatting, resource-management interfaces,
      modeling languages, and consistent content representations. These
      efforts have strong linkage to best-practice initiatives such as
      ITIL, eTOM, COBIT, and CMMI.

      LOOKING TOWARD THE FUTURE

      IBM Chairman and CEO Sam Palmisano has long recognized that
      businesses are changing to embrace a globally integrated environment
      and has noted "Because new techology and business models are
      allowing companies to treat their different functions and operations
      as component pieces, firms can pull those pieces apart and put them
      back together again in new combinations, . . ."1 This appreciation
      makes service management as we have described it in this paper of
      tremendous importance, since management of these enterprises
      requires greater flexibility than was required in the past.

      Similarly, the service-management capabilities emerging with this
      new model pose rich and exciting challenges. How can a business be
      managed when many of the components within that business are not
      under its direct control? How will businesses provide management
      interaction points so that their infrastructure can be managed by
      others in fulfillment of their business goals? How will service
      management extend to provide an integrated vision for a variety of
      different service sectors? Even within the context of IT, for
      example, the integrated management of mobile environments,
      telecommunications, transparent computing, and pervasive devices is
      a daunting challenge. As the integrated environment increases in
      complexity, management tools will be required which reduce the
      problems created by this complexity.

      CONCLUSION

      Businesses now compete in an increasingly service-oriented
      environment, the effective and efficient management of which is of
      paramount importance. The days in which systems-management
      technologies could completely accommodate a complex service, with
      its interconnected and distributed elements, are in the past. In
      today's business environment, it is an absolute necessity to have
      management systems that provide visibility as well as confidence and
      reliance on autonomic or self-managing elements, all seamlessly
      linked with necessary best-practice processes that accommodate both
      business and automation. Such a service-management system must
      encompass people, processes, technology, and organization in order
      to completely fulfill its mission.

      The system must provide a flexible framework which offers customers
      ready-for-use best-practice experiences and management capabilities
      for a wide variety of managed entities, yet do so in a manner that
      is both flexible and easily reconfigured. This is a difficult
      balance to strike, but one that must be mastered by service-
      management product vendors and the vendors of services who use these
      products in order for customers to reap the full benefits of
      tomorrow's service-oriented capabilities.

      ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

      The authors wish to thank members of the IBM team too numerous to
      mention for their contributions to IBM Service Management, but, in
      particular, C. J. Paul and Christopher Ward for their hard work in
      coordinating the development of this special issue of the IBM
      Systems Journal on IBM Service Management.

      (c) Copyright 2007 by International Business Machines Corporation.
      Copying in printed form for private use is permitted without payment
      of royalty provided that (1) each reproduction is done without
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      without further permission by computer- based and other information-
      service systems. Permission to republish any other portion of the
      paper must be obtained from the Editor. 0018-8670/07/$5.00 (c) 2007
      IBM

      * Trademark, service mark, or registered trademark of International
      Business Machines Corporation in the United States, other countries,
      or both.

      * * Trademark, service mark, or registered trademark of the United
      Kingdom Office of Government Commerce, Telemanagement Forum
      Corporation, Information Systems Audit

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      Accepted for publication April 26, 2007.

      Alan Ganek

      IBM Software Group, Tivoli, 294 Route 100, Somers, NY 10S89
      (ganek@...). Mr. Ganek joined IBM as a software engineer in
      1978 in Poughkeepsie, New York, where he was involved in operating-
      system design and development, computer-addressing architecture, and
      parallel-systems architecture and design. He received an M.S. degree
      in computer science from Rutgers University in 1981. He was the
      recipient of Outstanding Innovation awards for his work on
      Enterprise Systems Architecture/3 70(TM) and System/390(R) Parallel
      Sysplex(R) design. He subsequently held numerous management and
      executive positions in operating systems, software quality and
      manufacturing, and the development of solutions for the
      telecommunications and media industries. In 2005, Mr. Ganek received
      the Albert Einstein Innovation Award from Global Capital Associates
      for his leadership in establishing the field of autonomic computing.
      He was recognized as development leader of an IBM project that
      received a Technical Emmy Award from the National Academy of
      Television Arts and Sciences. Prior to joining the IBM Software
      Group, Mr. Ganek was responsible for the technical strategy and
      operations of the IBM Research Division. This role entailed
      developing the technology outlook of the IBM Research Division and
      its strategy, as well as leading key operational processes, such as
      finance, site management, and information services.

      Kristof Kloeckner

      IBM Software Group, Tivoli, 294 Route 100, Somers, NY 10S89
      (kristof@...). Dr. Kloeckner was appointed to his present
      position in July 2006 and was previously Vice President of
      Development for Tivoli. Before that, he held executive leadership
      positions in strategy, architecture, and development in Germany, the
      United Kingdom and the United States, including Director of the
      Hursley Laboratory in the United Kingdom. He joined IBM in 1984 as a
      development engineer in the Boeblingen Development Laboratory in
      Germany. Dr. Kloeckner oversees the strategic direction for the IBM
      Software Group, including open standards and open-source software,
      advanced development methodologies, and incubation of innovative
      technology. He leads the transformation and integration of IBM
      middleware across all software brands. He has Master's and Ph.D.
      degrees in mathematics from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in
      Frankfurt, Germany. He is a Fellow of the British Computer Society
      (BCS) and the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) and an
      honorary professor at the University of Stuttgart.

      Copyright International Business Machines Corporation Jul-Sep 2007

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