Configuration Management - maturity of approach
What is configuration management and how do customers interpret the term?
Having a look at the definition we see that ITIL(r) defines Configuration management as ďTo ensure the provision of the information required to manage the quality of IT services by planning, identifying, controlling and verifying the structure, content and integrity of the information, the database and itís associated management processesĒ.
This is all well and true, but how do we do this and to what level do we unleash such a monster of a discipline in the ICT organization?
Myth, most customers regard a CMDB to be a database where some computer equipment is kept. In some aspect itís is true, but only a part of it, Iím afraid. Computer equipment is only a small part of the information that is gathered, maintained and managed in your CMDB. Customers must be made aware that their Processes-, Procedures-, Contact-, Service Classification configuration data, only to name a few, form an integral part when setting up your CMDB. It goes way beyond computer equipment data.
Another very important topic to stress with a customer when setting up a CMDB is that each of the steps that involve planning, identification, control and verification form a very crucial role to a successful implementation of configuration management within the organization. Customers often choose to focus most of their time and effort on one activity more than the others and itís often found that, for example, the neglect of analysis and planning leads to a poor control and verification.
Understand the CMDB and its role within the organization, and then...for each activity, think it, plan it and action it wisely to ensure that the business expectations are successfully met.