I’m a busy, busy Beetil

October 18, 2008


When we first set up YouDo (vote for us here as a top 10 startup), our long term goal was building successful products, as opposed to just focussing solely upon services.  

Having managed some pretty critical IT systems in my previous life, I could never find an effective tool that helped me manage across the whole IT service management lifecycle.   We had evaluated numerous products out there, but they were either too simple, too complex, too expensive, too unusable, or just downright rubbish.   A lot of other people I know find this.   And a lot of people end up building their own – but that just gets too expensive and unmaintainable in the long term.

We were unsatisfied.

So we did something about it.

So I’m pleased to announce that we’re not too far away off of opening up a beta of our first product:

Beetil – service management without the pain.

We’ve got quite a few alpha users on the site at the moment, and pretty much “they can’t live without it”.  We’re using it to manage our own services.  And we love it.   If you’re interested in taking part in the alpha programme please feel free to give us a yell.

It’s a fun time.

ITILITIL version 3 was recently launched this month.  Whilst the fundamentals largely appear the same, they’ve rejigged it to adopt a more pragmatic “business” view as opposed to “process silo” view which caused so many issues in the previous version.  ITIL is good.

They’ve released six new books, which supposedly cover all the aspects required.  They’re downloadable from the TSO Bookstore.  These replace the old books of version two (of which there were plenty).   They are BIG, BIG books so I can just about see how they justify their £299 (yes, pounds) price tag!!  The printing cost of the books would be pretty significant.   They’re equivalent to a small tree.

But check this out…  Their PDF version is a whopping £351.  Yes – 52 quid more expensive!  And the PDFs are DRMed!  Check it out!  Astounding.  How can a DRMed PDF cost more than six whopping tree resembling books?

I thought that standards were out there for people to adopt.  Why the f**k should we have to pay £351 for a individual PDF license?  Jeeps!  It’s even a British Government standard.

Maybe I’m missing something here, but if Governments et al (British, Kiwi, whoever) want everyone to adopt these standards then why charge like a wounded bull.  Make them free.  Drive adoption.

I was giving a presentation the other day about ITIL, and our experiences with adopting the framework.

I see many companies nowadays who think that you can just buy the ITIL books and adopt the processes verbatim.   “Good bloody luck”, is all I can say.  A sure fire way to shaft yourselves.

The whole ITIL methodology needs to be baked in to everything that you do.  It needs to become culture.  It needs buy-in.  From everybody.  And the only way that you can achieve that is through taking the parts of ITIL that are most relevant to your business,  modify them to best suit your needs, socialise, and demonstrate that it truly will help.  This process takes time, and lot of going backwards and forwards to get it right.    The process changes too.  It can always be improved.

Thinking about ITIL?  I’d recommend you start small, get runs on the board, and build from there.  Get real.

ITIL should help you, not hinder you.  Just buying a tool won’t cut the mustard.  You’ve gotta live it.