How to Develop an IT Service Catalog

Developing a service catalog may sound simple, but in order to encourage customer engagement and set proper expectations, it helps to consider the following tips to make it work:

1) Identify the services your business needs in order to operate

Developing a service catalog is an exercise in good communication. Know your company and learn about its wants and needs. Business unit managers and other decision makers should work with both end users and stakeholders to determine what they need to perform their jobs. Differentiate between the services that your service desk and other IT teams currently provide and what may be missing. Are they essential and, more importantly, do they align with company goals?

Category Service
Software Software Distribution, Licensing, Implementation, Licensed Software, Web Developer Tools
Support and Training FAQs, Online Help, Training Programs, Teaching and Learning, Knowledge Sharing
Networks and Connectivity Wi-Fi, VPN, LAN, WAN, Network Monitoring
Messaging and Collaboration Email, Instant Messaging, Mailing Lists, Calendar, File Sharing, Fax
Voice Mobile, Telephone, Audio Conferencing, Video Teleconference, Radio
Accounts and Access Identity Management, Guest Accounts
Cloud Services Provisioning
Data Center Off-site Storage, Facility Management
Hosted Services Web Hosting, Database, Data storage, Backup Services, Content Management
Security Security and Privacy Policy, Disaster Recovery, Network Monitoring
Video Video Equipment, Television
Print Printing, Copy, Printer Maintenance
Infrastructure Web Services, Wiring Services, Load Balancing, Mainframe
Hardware Desktop PC, Laptop, Mac, Mobile Device, Server, Accessibility Resources, Tape Management
Professional Services Strategy, Planning, Project Management, Document Management, Application Integrations, Digital Asset Management

 

2) Define security and access permissions

Who will have access to the service catalog and specific services? Restricting access to the service catalog or specific services is important. You may want to allow end-users to request a keyboard or mouse, but limit items with a higher price tag, such as laptops or tablets, to management.

3) Simplify the search process

Categorize services with your end user in mind. Simplify whenever possible and keep technical jargon to a minimum. For example, would a business user know to look under ‘infrastructure’ for backup services, or should ‘backup’ be front and center? Think about the intuitiveness of Amazon categorization. Confusion creates dissatisfaction, and dissatisfaction will defeat the purpose of your service catalog.

4) Optimize the user experience

Make the user experience a friendly one with an easy-to-access, simple-to-navigate IT self-service portal that contains all of the services that they will need to do their job.

5) Roll out in phases

Test a representative portion of your user pool with a small selection of services. Find out what works and what doesn’t.  Solve the “glitches” and slowly increase the user base and offerings within your catalog.

6) Invest in automation

Once you feel confident in the design of your service catalog and processes that support it, select a software product that best manages your company’s specific service needs – and automate delivery whenever possible.

 

 

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