Skip to content

Why Mistakes Are Good

At our London Showcase event this Summer, Tim Harford gave an excellent presentation on why mistakes in business are good. Here he is to explain why.

Posted in Events.

Tagged with , .

ISO/IEC 20000 – Myths and Truths

ISO/IEC 20000

During my work in service and information security management training and consultancy, I come across many myths about ISO/IEC 20000. These are often used as fear factors and reasons for not implementing ISO/IEC 20000. This blog discusses those myths and what is the truth behind them.

Myth 1 – ISO/IEC 20000 is only for large commercial organizations

Truth: The standard itself says in clause 1.2,  ‘All requirements in this part of ISO/IEC 20000 are generic and are intended to be applicable to all service providers, regardless of type, size and the nature of the services delivered.’ All management system standards can be used by all organizations – large, small, private, public, not for profit. ISO/IEC 20000-1 states what is to be achieved. By varying how this is achieved, the standard can be applied to all types and sizes of organizations.


Posted in ISO Schemes, IT Service Mgmt.

Tagged with , .

Background and Introduction to the Better Business Cases Certification

BBC hero panel_1I braved myself to undertake the foundation course for the Better Business Cases certification last week and I must say although it was a steep learning curve for me, it was interesting as well as very insightful. Remember as a marketing professional I was approaching the course not only to get a better understanding about the topic – but also understand the thoughts of ‘real candidates’ that will be using the knowledge gained from this course in their day jobs. So here are my thoughts… Continued…

Posted in Exams, Project Mgmt, Qualifications.

Tagged with , , , .

Over 1,000 Cyber Security Professionals Have Been CESG Certified

CCP Logo (Colour) - No APMG-01-01

Launched back in September 2012, the CESG Certified Professional (CCP) Scheme is a key initiative for government and industry in assuring the competence of the cyber security professionals they employ and contract with.

  • CCP is a competency based scheme where applicants are required to provide evidence of applying their cyber security skills and knowledge to real world, workplace situations.
  • The reason, to increase the UK’s ability to tackle cyber security issues head-on throughout both private and public sectors.

Appointed by CESG as a CCP Certifying Body, APMG has been instrumental in taking the CCP scheme to market. CCP has gone from strength to strength with over 1,300 certificates awarded to over 1,000 cyber security professionals to date. Continued…

Posted in Cyber Security, Qualifications.

Tagged with , , .

How Do You Ensure You Get An Outcome? – by Tony Mann

John Gordon (Project Technologies) and I presented a Master Class at the recent UK APMG Showcase. We prepared for it by representing the two distinct roles of the ‘Task Leader’ (John) and the ‘Facilitator’ (me). As a project manager John is regularly faced with a number of crucial instances that need resolution or examination. As a Facilitator I am faced with the responsibility of deigning a process to achieve the outcomes that will fulfill the Task Leader’s requirement.

Tony Mann

The design of the process is predicated on the fundamental principle that:

-       Clarity and definition of the Objective is critical

-       Identifying the (sub) tasks is critical

-       The effective use of Format is crucial to the outcomes

-       The selection of the most effective tool or technique will ensure an effective output

To this end the Process Iceberg® Meeting Model illustrates the importance of these elements and how they contribute 80% to the success of the event.


Posted in Facilitation, Project Mgmt.

Tagged with , .

PMPs Prior Learning Recognized for PRINCE2®

Project Management Good news for current PMP holders. From July 1st, 2014, your prior learning will be recognized by PRINCE2 and you will not have to take the PRINCE2 Foundation as a pre-requisite to taking the Practitioner test.

Why are PMPs getting recognition?

It’s pretty much accepted that PMP and PRINCE2 are complementary standards. But, around the world, there are areas where one approach is much better known than the other. One of those places is North America. In the US, PRINCE2 hardly ever appears in job ads and few organizations are demanding PRINCE2 qualifications. If this change helps get the attention of PMPs then it’s a good thing for everyone.


Posted in Exams, Project Mgmt, Qualifications.

Tagged with , , .

IAITAM Throws Down ITAM Gauntlet Over IRS Email Scandal

IAITAM Woman_Logo

IAITAM has passionately rallied against the IRS’ explanation of events around the alleged destruction of Lois Lerner’s hard drive and emails. IT Asset Management (ITAM) bridges the gap between technology and business. This is applicable across all types of business or government, large or small. This is why IAITAM has challenged the IRS with 6 questions regarding its inability to produce the hard disk drives in question from Congress. IAITAM’s simple position is: – you cannot manage what you don’t know you have.

IAITAM originally raised grave concerns about the plausibility of the IRS story about the Lerner hard drive in June 2014, and its cause has been gaining momentum ever since. On July 24 Dr. Barbara Rembiesa, D.Litt, CEO of IAITAM – appeared as a guest on the Herman Cain show to explain IAITAM’s position:

Ultimately a modern day organization cannot function without technology, so that technology needs to be managed effectively with documented processes in place. IAITAM believes organizations need to oversee their IT assets as just that; assets.

This is why IAITAM has made this challenge and continually strives to produce the best education and IT asset management training in the world. Partnering with APMG International and EY for accreditation and corporate certification – the ITAM profession has now earned a seat in the executive boardroom. IAITAM certified IT asset managers are answering that call and bringing IAITAM to the forefront of effective business management.

Posted in Cyber Security.

Tagged with , , , .

The Abandoned Application Syndrome – by Mike Orzen

Once upon a time, there was an organization that perceived it would be much easier to obtain functional software by circumventing the IT group, than it would be negotiating the nearly two-year backlog of projects in front of their request. After all, the department had received numerous calls from vendors touting the functionality of their products and explaining how they could install, configure, and train staff – all at a reasonable price.

The functional business group was being held accountable to drive some critical results and perceived the IT department as a delay, if not an outright barrier, to achieving their objectives. They could not understand why it should  take so long for their internal IT group to respond to their high-priority request (2 weeks), when the vendor seemed more than capable of providing everything they needed in a “turnkey” solution and was available to begin immediately.


Posted in IT Service Mgmt, Mindful ITSM, Project Mgmt.

Tagged with .

What We Need is a Great Big Melting Pot – of Best Practices

This post was inspired by a recent article by Ken Gonzalez entitled Best Practice: Are We Missing The Point?’

A discussion followed Ken’s posting on Back2ITSM and the question was posed ‘Why don’t organizations choose the appropriate practices from all of the best practices available and apply them to improve service delivery?’

I have an idea or two!

I said in response to Ken’s posting that I am working with a client that recently stated, ‘We are not doing ITIL any more. We are going to do COBIT instead’. I am sure you can imagine my reaction to that statement!

Unfortunately it is all too common. There seems to be a persistent belief that you choose one framework or methodology to work with and that it will meet all your needs.

There are a raft of frameworks and methodologies to choose from. Take your pick – ITIL®, COBIT®, OBASHI®, DevOps, P3O®, MSPV, Prince2®, PMBOK®etc. Not to mention standards such as ISO/IEC 20000.


Posted in Mindful ITSM.

Tagged with , , , .

Walk A Mile In Their Shoes

I had a conversation on Twitter recently regarding IT professionals spending time in other business units to spark innovation and the resolution of business challenges.

Twitter Karen FerrisA SaaStr article that said everybody in a SaaS company had to do 2+ hours in customer support once a quarter sparked the conversation. The tweets included suggestions that the CIO and IT managers should spend time on the Service Desk; everyone in Service Management should spend time on the Service Desk; and Service Desk staff should spend 2 hours per qu+arter shadowing someone in a business unit.

I don’t disagree with any of those suggestions.

I wrote a blog entitled ‘Walk A Mile In Their Shoes’ last year, which described some customer experience programmes for IT employees.

I don’t intend to repeat that content here, but rather augment it on the back of this recent conversation.

I think that a customer experience programme has two perspectives – that of the external customer experience and that of the internal customer experience.

External Customer

When was the last time you went on to your company website to see how easy it was to undertake a transaction whether that be to make a purchase or find the right person to contact to ask for further information?


Posted in IT Service Mgmt.

Tagged with .