Panel Explores How the IT4IT Reference Architecture Acts as a Digital Business Enabler
Panel Explores How the IT4IT Reference Architecture Acts
as a Digital Business Enabler
Transcript of a discussion on the value and direction of The Open Group Reference Architecture
for managing IT as a business.
Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Get the mobile app. Sponsor: The Open
Dana Gardner: Hello, and welcome to a special BrieﬁngsDirect thought leadership panel
discussion coming to you in conjunction with The Open Group 2016. We'll now explore the
value and direction of The Open Group IT4IT initiative, a new reference
architecture for managing IT as a business.
IT4IT was a hot topic at the January 2016 conference, and the enterprise
architect and IT leader attendees examined it from a variety of different
angles. This panel now elevates the discussion to the level of digital business
And so to learn more about how IT4IT aids businesses, we are joined by Chris
Davis, Professor of Information Systems at the University of South Florida and also Chairman of
The Open Group IT4IT Forum; Lars Rossen, a Distinguished Technologist at Hewlett Packard
Enterprise (HPE) and a chief architect for the IT4IT program; Ryan Schmierer, Business and
Enterprise Architect for IT at Microsoft, and David Wright, Chief Strategy Ofﬁcer at
When we discuss IT4IT, I hear it described as a standard, a framework, a methodology, and a
business-enabler. Chris, is it all of those, is it more, is this a whole greater than the sum of the
parts? Help us understand the IT4IT potential.
Chris Davis: It could be seen as all of those. I have been academically in this space for 20 to 25
years, and the thing that is different, the thing that adds potential to this is the value-chain
As well as being a really potent technical standard, we've abstracted this to levels
that can be immediately appreciated in the C Suite. People like Kathleen come
along, they see it and get it, and that provides some traction. That is a very
positive thing, and will enable us to pick up speed as people like Toine invite real
penetration down to the CMDB level and so on.
We have this multilayer view. Lars and I articulated it as levels of abstraction, but I think the
integration of Mike Porter’s stuff really adds some perspective to this technical standard that
maybe isn’t present or hasn’t been present in other frameworks and tools.
Gardner: And as we explain this up the value chain into the organization, do you expect that
IT4IT is something you would take to a board setting environment and have them understand
this concept of a value stream and consolidating around that?
Davis: Yeah, I do. Some of the observations that were made yesterday about the persistence of
models like value chain, value stream, and so on, still make enormous sense to people at the CIO
level. That enables the conversation to begin and also provides the ability to see whereabouts,
how much of the standard, which particular value streams, where in the organization (the various
parts and perspectives) ﬁt.
As well as being very potent and very prescriptive, we have that conceptual agility that the
standard provides. I ﬁnd it exciting and quite refreshing.
Gardner: Lars, one thing that’s also interesting to me about IT4IT is that this was an organic
development within IT organizations, for and by them. Tell us how, at HPE, you developed this,
and why it was a good ﬁt for The Open Group as a standardization process?
Lars Rossen: A couple of things made us kick this off, together with Shell initially and then a lot
of members came over the years. For us in HPE, it was around consumption of our toolsets.
That’s where I came from.
I was sitting on the portfolio group and I said, well, we're all drawing all of these
diagrams around how it could ﬁt together and we have these endless discussions
with customers about whether this was right or this was wrong. I was completely
disagreeing with all our friendly partners, as well as not so friendly competitors,
about what was the right diagram.
Putting this into the open -- and we chose Open Group for that particular reason;
they have shown in the past that they can create these kinds of things -- allowed us to have that
common framework for deﬁning the To-Be architecture for our customers. That simply made it
much easier for us to sell our product suite. So it made a lot of business value for us.
And it also made it much easier for our consultancy service. We didn’t have to argue about the
To-Be architecture; it was a given. Then, we can talk about how to actually implement it, which
is much more interesting.
Gardner: And while we are speaking about HPE and your experience there, do you have any
tangible metrics of success as to how this improved? You went through a large business
separation of IT departments; that must have been a difﬁcult process. Was there anything that the
IT4IT approach brought to that particular activity that you can point to as a business driver or
Rossen: I can. A very large organization is compartmentalized in many different ways, and you
could say, well, how do all of these units interchange and work with each other, because it goes
both ways; it’s not only the split, but it’s also all the acquisitions we've been doing over the
And then we have the framework that we can use and plot things in to, and we have a
standardized toolset we can use and reuse over and over again.
Before we had IT4IT, we counted how many integrations we had
between our various IT management products, and it ran to about 500.
With IT4IT, we can drill down and see that there are only about 50 that are really
interesting. Then, we can double down on those. We can now measure how much these are the
ones that are being consumed moving forward, both internally within our service practice and as
well as with our customer base.
Gardner: Ryan, at Microsoft, I’m wondering about Bimodal IT and Shadow IT. Because you
perhaps have a more concentrated view on IT and you can control your organization, you don’t
have that problem – or maybe you do. Is there is any degree of Bimodal IT at Microsoft or
Shadow IT within your IT organization, have you addressed that, and has IT4IT been a use in
Consistency and repeatability
Ryan Schmierer: First, starting with the idea of Bimodal IT, we go back to some of the
research and the thoughts coming from Gartner over the last couple of years about different parts
of IT needing to work at different paces. Some need to be more agile and work
faster; others need to be the foundational stalwarts of the organization, providing
that consistency and that repeatability that we need.
At Microsoft, we tend to look at it a little bit differently. When you think about
agile versus waterfall, it’s not a matter of one versus the other. Should we do one or
the other? There's a place for both of these. They are tools within our toolbox.
Within IT, there are places where we want to move in a more agile way -- where
we want to move faster. There are also certain activities where waterfall is still an
excellent methodology to drive the consistency and predictability that we need.
A good example of that comes with large releases. We may develop changes or features in a very
agile way, but as we move towards making large changes to the business that impact large
business functions, we need to roll those changes out in a very controlled, scripted way. So, we
take a little bit different look at Bimodal than some companies do.
Your other question was on Shadow IT. One of the things that we have challenged a lot over the
last year or so is this concept the role of the IT organization relative to the rest of the enterprise.
As we think about that, we're not thinking about IT as a service provider to the enterprise, but as
a supporting function to the enterprise.
What does that mean? It means Shadow IT doesn’t exist. It just happens to be someone else
within the organization providing that function. And so it becomes less of a question of
controlling and preventing Shadow IT and more of embracing that outside-in approach and being
able to assimilate those changes and coordinate them in a more structured way to manage things
like risk and security.
Gardner: Well, we have heard that there’s a bridging of siloes beneﬁt to IT4IT in either Bimodal
or Shadow IT. Can you relay a way in which IT4IT helped you bridge silos and consolidate
culturally and otherwise your IT efforts?
Schmierer: Absolutely. Very similar to some of the experiences that Lars explained at HPE, at
Microsoft we've had a number of different product groups focusing on different products and
solutions and service suites over the last few years.
As we've moved to more of a One Microsoft approach, we're looking at, how to bring the
organization and the enterprise together in a cohesive way?
IT plays a role in enabling that as a supportive function to the company and the IT4IT standard
has been a great tool for us to have a common talking point, a common framework, to bridge
those discussions about not only what we do internally within IT, but how the things that we do
internally relate to the products and services that we sell out into the marketplace as well. Having
that common framework, that common taxonomy, is not just about talking with customers; it’s
about talking internally and getting the entire enterprise aligned.
Business service management
Gardner: Dave, as organizations are working at different paces toward being digital businesses,
they might look to their IT organizations for leadership. We might, as a business, want to behave
more like our IT organizations.
At ServiceNow I have heard you describe IT service management (ITSM) as one step toward
business service management (BSM), rather than just ITSM. How do you see the evolution from
ITSM to business service management and a digital business beneﬁt? And how do you foresee
IT4IT aiding and accelerating that?
David Wright: The interesting thing about IT4IT is the fact that it conceptualizes the whole four
stages that people go through on the journey. I suppose you could say the gift that ITIL gave IT
was to give it an operational framework to work with.
Most other parts of the business haven’t got an operational framework. If you want to request
something off most parts of the business, you will send them an email. If you want something off
legal, you want something off marketing, send them an email. They haven’t got a system where
they can request something.
If we take some of the processes described in IT4IT and publish that in a business-service
catalog, you effectively allow everyone to have a single system of engagement. They might have
their own back-end systems, they might have their own human capital
management system, their own enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, but
how do you engage and link all those companies together?
The other thing that IT has learned over a number of different implementations is
how important the experience becomes, because if you can generate an
experience where people want to use it, that’s what’s going to drive adoption of it
as a function.
Let’s take this room as a whole. If we all sat together and built Uber, it would be crap. It would
be really good for the taxi drivers, but it would be terrible for the people who actually wanted to
request the service, and that’s because we tend to build everything from the inside out.
The fact we have now got a way to elevate that position and look at it from above, and
understand all those components, and be able to track all those components from start to ﬁnish,
and give people visibility in where you are in that process, that’s not just a beneﬁt to IT; that’s a
beneﬁt to anyone who provides a service.
Gardner: As we also explore ways that we can evangelize and advocate for this in our
organizations, it’s helpful to have places where it works ﬁrst, the crawl-walk-run approach.
Chris, can you help us understand areas where applying IT4IT early and often as a beachhead
Need and competence
Davis: Where you have the need and the competence. Back to my earlier point about how the
standard can be envisioned, and the point that David just made, what we offer in IT4IT is
something that’s not only prescriptive and ready to hand, but it’s also ready to mind, so people
get it very quickly.
The quick wins are the important ones, not necessarily the low-hanging fruit, but the parts of the
business where opportunities like the ones that David just suggested -- if we were to try to do
something like Uber -- that would be too much.
If somewhere in an organization like Microsoft -- where Kathleen is in-charge -- there is a group
that can gain rapid traction, that would be most effective. Then the telling of the early success
stories; the work by Toine that shows how from the early stages in the development of the
architecture, it was useful at Rabobank, that adds momentum.
Gardner: Lars, same question, where did you see this as getting traction best? Maybe it’s new
efforts, greenﬁeld application development, mobile-ﬁrst type development, or maybe it’s some
other area. Where might you point to as a great starting point to build this into an organization?
Rossen: It’s pretty simple actually. We've done more than 50, maybe a 100 engagements now
using the IT4IT model with our customer base. Very often, it's the central IT. It comes out of
saying, "We're too inconsistent." It’s the automation story that comes ﬁrst, and then typically you
end up in a discussion around Detect to Correct. It’s a familiar area and people understand the
various components that are involved in that.
But back to what you mentioned before is the layer approach that allows us to go in with a single
slide. We can put it up in large format on the wall, and you can start to put Post-It notes on it.
You don’t need to understand architecture. That implies that we can have decision makers
coming in, and we break down a lot of siloes in the operations area, just with Detect to Correct.
That’s where 99 percent of our engagements have been starting.
Then, the Request to Fulﬁll with the experience is where people want to go. That’s the Holy
Grail, or one of the Holy Grails. There are actually two Holy Grails, and that’s just one of them.
The other one is to be able to do Strategy to Portfolio, and no longer just say, "I have this
application and I need to move it to the next version or whatever." It's understanding what are the
services, not the applications, but the services I'm delivering to the business.
It isn't until you have the value streams more in order that you can start building up that service
backbone that is so crucial to IT4IT.
Gardner: Is there an element of educating the consumer of IT in an enterprise to anticipate
services differently? Ryan, when you mentioned earlier the Request to Fulﬁll value stream, I can
understand how that makes a great deal of sense from IT out to the organization. But do people
have to make an adjustment in order to receive things as a value stream, to consume them, to
think of asking things through the lens of your being a broker organization? What must we do to
educate and help the consumer of IT understand that it might be a different ballgame?
Schmierer: We need to start with the goal of reducing friction within the organization.
Consumers of IT are operating in a changing landscape. I talked earlier about the network effect
and how the environment is constantly evolving, constantly changing. As it does, the needs and
desires of the people consuming technology and information will continue to change.
Request to Fulﬁll helps provide the mechanics for a corporate IT organization to become that
broker of services. But if we look at that from a consumption perspective (from the users of
services) it's all about enabling them to change their mind, change their needs, change their
business processes faster, and removing the friction that exists within the process of provisioning
If something is a new technology that they want to bring into their organization, because they see
a potential to it, how do we get that in there faster? The whole Request to Fulﬁll value stream is
about accelerating the time to value for new technology coming into the organization and
reducing the friction of the request process.
Gardner: Dave, anything to offer on that same side, the consumption side, rather than the
Wright: When you look at how people consume things now, there is deﬁnitely a trend going on,
where people are becoming more service-aware. We're getting this breakdown now, where
people are saying that it’s not about the CIs; it’s about the service that those CIs support, how
you can take something that can have not a CI-centric CMDB, but a service-centric CMDB. How
people can map those relationships. The whole consumption side of it is ﬂipping now, as people’s
expectations come in line.
The other thing I found speciﬁcally with the IT4IT concept is that people start to put together a
kind of business logic very quickly around things. So they'll look at the whole process. And I had
someone said to me a few weeks ago, "If I understand the cost elements of each of those, I truly
know what that service costs. Could I move and actually be able to manage my system based on
what it’s costing the business not the fact it’s a server on problem or it’s a red light? It’s costing
me x-amount of dollars a minute for this to be down and I’ve spent this much money actually
building it and getting out." But you have to have all those elements tied in, all the way from the
portfolio element right the way through to the run element.
Gardner: So it really seems as if it also offers a value of rationalization, prioritization, but in
business terms rather than IT terms. Is that correct?
Gardner: As I try to factor where this will work best, early, and often, not only would we look at
speciﬁc parts of IT within organization, but we might look at speciﬁc companies as a culture, as a
type of company but also vertical industries. I'll go back to you, Dave, because ServiceNow has a
fairly horizontal view of many different companies. Are there particular companies that you
think it would be, as a culture or a type of company, better suited for adoption of IT4IT or in
other vertical industries where this makes sense ﬁrst?
Wright: The people I have seen who would be most disciplined about wanting to be able to
look at things holistically right across the whole gamut have been the pharmaceutical companies.
Pharmaceutical companies have come along and they're obviously very regimented in the same
way ﬁnances are. They're the people who seem to be the early adopters of looking at this holistic
If I look at customers, the people who are adopting it ﬁrst, at a low level, tend to be the ﬁnancial
institutions, but after that, the conversation tends to go through pharmaceuticals. I don’t think
any one business has really nailed it, but this is a challenge of every company. Every company
has an IT division, and they run IT, but their business isn’t to run IT; their business is inherently
to provide ﬁnancial services or develop drugs.
Looking at what processes people do to drive their core business, the people who are very
regimented and disciplined tend to be the people who are saying there has to be a way we can
gain more visibility into what we're doing from an IT perspective.
Gardner: Ryan, thoughts on the similar question about where this is applicable either as a type
of company or a vertical industry?
Schmierer: I'd look at who is most threatened by the changes going on in the world today.
Where are cost pressures to drive efﬁciencies most prevalent because they're going to have the
most motivation to change quickly? I'd also look at companies that were early adopters of IT
who, through their early adoption, have ended up with a lot of legacy debt that they're trying to
manage and they now need to rationalize that in order to get their total IT cost proﬁle down.
In terms of speciﬁc verticals, there are pockets within each vertical or each industry that there are
opportunities here. I'd look at it from a scale perspective. If you go back to the scale model that I
shared this morning about the different sizes of organizations, a lot of small organizations don’t
need this, and a lot of start-ups can build it into their DNA. Some of the companies that have
more legacy (more mature enterprises) have more of a fundamental need for this type of
structure and are going to be able to reap some beneﬁts more quickly or with only a few pieces
It’s a scale question and it’s a risk question. Who is under the most pressure to improve their cost
Gardner: So if I do IT4IT correctly, how might I know a few months -- six months, a quarter or
two down the road – later that I can attribute improvement to that particular activity?
Rossen: There are a couple of different things that I believe can be done at an abstract level
where actually within IT4IT trying to make more concrete key performance indicator (KPI)
assessments of what would make sense in terms of measuring it. More abstractly, are you really
embracing the multi-supplier options that reside in IT4IT. That’s one of the reasons we kicked it
off. Shell has some good examples of what it costs to integrate a supplier. And that’s tremendous
high cost typically, because you have to design how to exchange an incident every time over-
and-over again, and then it becomes much more reusable.
That's a place where you see that the cost of working with your partner should go down, and you
can become a service broker. That's a particular area where we would see beneﬁts very quickly.
But it's also coming back to the original question or questions. That's also where we see the
typical companies that wants to pick it up are the companies that really are having that pain that
it's not a centralized IT any longer. It's lines of business IT, it's central, it’s suppliers and you
yourself are supplying to others. If you have that problem then IT4IT is really good for you and
you can quickly see beneﬁts.
Gardner: Chris, thoughts on this notion of how do I attribute beneﬁts in my IT organization at
the business level to IT4IT?
Holy Grail for academics
Davis: This has been another Holy Grail for academics. We go all the way back to the 1970s
constructive cost model and things like that. Lars hit the nail on the head. The other thing is what
Cathleen said this morning. It will be less easily measured, more easily sensed, there will be
changes in mindsets and so on. So it's very difﬁcult to articulate and measure, but we're working
on ways to make it much more tractable.
Wright: I've been implementing ITSM system since the mid-90s, but we still do one thing in the
same way that’s truly weird and you are kind of hitting on this question. Can we deﬁne the
Whenever anyone undertakes a project like this, they decide they're going to completely redeﬁne
the way that IT manages itself as a business. You probably should design the outcomes in the
metrics that you want before you put the system in. Almost everyone I can ever remember
implements a system and goes "Cool, let's write some reports." And then you take the reports you
can get and say, "We'd like a report that shows this," and the consultant who put it in says, "Oh,
you can't get that."
If only you step back and said, "Let's think what we want and build a system that delivers that
data," is would provide a lot more value to the business.
Gardner: Well, I've had a chance to ask lots of questions. Let's go now to our architects, the
people in the trenches. Dave Lounsbury, CTO at The Open Group, help us out with some
practical approaches to implementing IT4IT.
Dave Lounsbury: First off, I want to mention that it's really gratifying to see that new
participants like Ryan and David come in and adopt this technology, and give us their insights.
So thank you very much for participating, as well as our legacy folks. IT always
has a legacy, right?
Each speaker mentioned the need for better data management as part of this
process, and so this is a governance issue. And who in these evolving organizations
should be responsible for data governance; is it the business, is it IT, is it a third
entity that should be doing that? Any thoughts on that?
Schmierer: Let me take that one. We need to start by rethinking the idea of data
governance. We're trying to govern the data because we're trying to create too much data. We're
spending far too much time adding overhead tasks to people who need to do their day jobs,
people who are trying to execute on the value stream in order to generate data needed to make
decision-making. When we don't get the data that we're looking for to drive decisions, we apply
governance and we apply more overhead on top of it.
As we think about IT4IT and the fact that we have a value stream and a separate set of
supporting functions, it gives us an opportunity to ask "How can we reduce the amount of data
required to be generated within the value stream itself?"
The extra data points that someone collects as a part of a request or the status updates that are
created as a part of a project or an agile release, how do we get to the point that we can derive
that from the operational systems themselves and let people just do their jobs? If we're not asking
people to manually create data, there's no need to create governance processes for it. That's why
IT4IT has a lot of value here. We're going to get greater [quality] data by making people’s jobs
Rossen: I'd like to answer that, very much in line to what you are saying. One of the purposes
of the service backbone is that everything relates back to that. If you really follow it, everything
would be available. You don’t need to do anything further in terms of data skews, any log
message, any incident, or any report or set of data from the development. It can all be related
back to the conceptual service and then you can have fun with creating the reports you want to
do, but you don’t add any overhead to the individuals in the value chain.
Lounsbury: Can you elaborate on how best to address the people and mindset shifts you need to
make as you transition to this kind of a model?
Schmierer: From a Microsoft perspective, it starts with valuing the individuals, the contributions
they’ve made to the organization, and the opportunity for them to be a part of the future where
the company is going. We need to make sure that we talk with individuals and reinforce that
they are valuable and appreciated.
Change is always difﬁcult. When you talk about changing skill sets, asking people to learn new
skills, adopting new ways of working, it’s uncomfortable. We're moving people out of their
comfort zone and asking them to do something new. But I don’t think this one is difﬁcult at all;
it’s basic. Appreciate your people and tell them thank you.
Lounsbury: So given a complex service request demand by a business user, how will IT4IT
assist me in designing a service with say, ﬁve different vendors?
Rossen: Well, the ﬁrst thing is that within S2P, which is really where such a thing comes in, it’s a
new service that needs to be introduced. We now have the framework for working on the
conceptual service that we will make up whatever is requested. But everybody in the room here
should probably appreciate the fact. We're not throwing away all the good stuff that goes around
TOGAF and architecture in general for the business. If it's a very complex thing, you need to
have an enterprise architecture worked out for that.
But it feeds into the pipeline of that, executing it. You can split it up into projects. You can still
attract them as being part of the bigger things, but it does lead to that. A very important thing in
IT4IT and in the industry in general is that you have to design small things that are making
dependences to each other so one service depends on another service and so on. It’s not just an
app on top of the infrastructure or platform infrastructure. It becomes much more complex with
respect to that, but it’s the way the industry goes.
Lounsbury: What are the most important steps a small-to-medium sized enterprise (SME) could
take to move to this service broker model that’s been advocated in IT4IT?
Wright: If it’s an SME, typically they're going to be using multiple systems coupled together.
There won’t be any real formality around it. But the ﬁrst thing for them is to get a common place
where they can go and request these services. So that catalog is going to be structured in a way
that’s easy to use.
I have a funny story. We were looking at how we designed UI/UX for our customers to interact
with software, and we hired a group of people who were 23 or 24 years old to build the UI. We
were showing a lot of them a standard service-management type of process you go through, and
he said it was very complex, and I said it was. He asked how people learn to use it? I said, "What
typically happens is you roll the system out and then you send all your users on a training
course." He was horriﬁed. He said, "You're allowed to write a software that’s so bad, you have to
train people how to use it?" I said, "Yes, I’ve made a good living for 25 years doing that."
To be able to get a catalog, especially in a smaller business where you’ve perhaps got a younger
workforce, more rapid turnover, or a potential to expand, it's development system is where you
don’t have to train people how to use them where it’s very intrusive.
I go onto this, I request something, and then suddenly something pops-up. I've got a task I need
to do. It’s not like the going in sorting through records wondering what it all means and why
have I got like 300 ﬁelds on the form and a couple of tabs to go through. It’s making work as
simple as possible, that’s what’s going to drive the adoption of this.
But at a high level, what really drives the adoption is the visibility of the end result that you get
from this, having that clarity of information. Imagine everyone in this room used to seeing
incidents by category, so you can see a percentage of where you're spending your time, you are
on hardware issues, you are doing software upgrades. No other part of the business, especially in
this consolidated business model, can see that.
If you go to human resources and ask for a breakdown of percentages, how much you spend on
each different type of task, you'll get some tribal knowledge ballpark ﬁgures. Same for legal,
same for ﬁnance. Everyone who has been there for a while knows it, but there are no metrics. If
you can provide those metrics at a top level, that just drives it further and further into the
Lounsbury: One more, okay, so which one to choose? And of course people will be able to
interact with these folks at the breaks and at our evening reception if I don’t get to your question.
So how does IT4IT help in a situation where a company is trying to eliminate a data center and
move to the public cloud? As a broker of services who owns the system integration and process
services, how does that ﬂow in the IT4IT model?
Rossen: I'll take the ﬁrst crack. Again it’s a classical scenario around saying where can you
rationalize your portfolio? So do I outsource it, do I move the infrastructure to the cloud, do I
still maintain the actual application, etc. You can’t make these decisions without having
assistance of insight around what you're actually running, how it’s being consumed, what
business value does it bring, which goes back to strategy to portfolio, what conceptual services
do you have, how are they currently implemented, how are they running, what is the quality, how
many consumers are there on it?
If you have that data, it’s actually fairly easy to make these decisions, but typically most
organizations, this exercises require 60 spread sheets, half a calendar year 60 people trying to
ﬁgure that out and in the meantime it’s not really correct, right? And that’s again because you
don’t have a service backbone, you don’t really have connected information, so implementing
IT4IT will allow you to make these decisions much easier.
Schmierer: Let me add onto that a little bit. As we talked about, "If you want to move
something in a cloud, how can I get IT4IT to help me?" We have to remember that this is an area
where the industry is evolving. We haven’t got it all ﬁgured out yet. IT4IT is a great starting
point for having the conversation with those folks helping you in system integration and your
cloud service provider to step through the questions about how things need to change, what
needs to be done differently. "What are the things that the consuming IT organization no longer
needs to do because the cloud service provider is doing for them?"
For now, start by using IT4IT as a checklist, use it as a starting point for brokering the
conversation to ask if we've thought about everything. Over time, this will get repeatable -- it
will become a common pattern, and we'll just know and won’t need to have that conversation.
But for now, IT4IT is a great reference model to help us have that conversation.
Gardner: Would it not make sense for you as a consumer of cloud services to wonder whether
your cloud provider is using IT4IT and wouldn’t that give you a common denominator by which
to pursue some of these beneﬁts?
Rossen: That would certainly be in the future when we come to tool certiﬁcation within The
Open Group. A cloud provider would also need to be certiﬁed to saying, well, if you ﬁnd my
service, I can actually provide you with an incident interface according to the standards, so it's
easy for you to hand over and go back and forth if there are issues just to take one example,
Gardner: Any more to offer from anyone?
Schmierer: One thing I can offer is this: since the IT4IT standard launched in Edinburgh three
months ago, I can’t tell you how many emails I receive from our account teams and from
customers who are asking us this exact question.
Customers are asking the question about IT4IT, how it plays into the service provider landscape
and how they can use it to drive the conversation. So the word is getting out, and the best thing
you can do as a consumer of this stuff, as you go work with different service providers is to ask
the questions, and ask their opinion and their thoughts on it.
Gardner: I am afraid we will have to leave it there. We’ve been talking about the value and
direction of The Open Group’s IT4IT initiative, a new reference architecture for managing IT as
a business. And we’ve heard how the power of IT4IT can help businesses gain effective and
practical business transformation beneﬁts.
I’d like to thank our panelists, Chris Davis, Professor of Information Systems at the University of
South Florida and also Chairman of The Open Group IT4IT Forum; Lars Rossen, a
Distinguished Technologist at Hewlett Packard Enterprise and a chief architect for the IT4IT
program; Ryan Schmierer, Business and Enterprise Architect for IT at Microsoft, and David
Wright, Chief Strategy Ofﬁcer at ServiceNow.
Also, a big thank you to The Open Group for sponsoring this discussion. And lastly, a big thank
you to our audience for joining us.
This is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions, your host and moderator
throughout these Enterprise IT Thought Leadership panel discussions. Thanks again for listening,
and do come back next time.
Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Get the mobile app. Sponsor: The Open
Transcript of a discussion on the value and direction of The Open Group Reference Architecture
for managing IT as a business. Copyright The Open Group and Interarbor Solutions, LLC,
2005-2016. All rights reserved.
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