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Strategy Management (ITIL 4)

Parent Process Reference Framework: ITIL 4

Service Value Stream Activities

Highly impacted Service Value System(SVS) Activities:

  • Plan

Description

The purpose of the strategy management practice is to formulate the goals of the organization and adopt the courses of action and allocation of resources necessary for achieving those goals. Strategy management establishes the organization’s direction, focuses effort, defines or clarifies the organization’s priorities, and provides consistency or guidance in response to the environment 

The starting point for strategy management is to understand the context of the organization and define the desired outcomes. The strategy of the organization establishes criteria and mechanisms that help to decide how to best prioritize resources, capabilities, and investment to achieve those outcomes, while the practice ensures that the strategy is defined, agreed, maintained, and achieved. 

The objectives of strategy management are to: 

  • analyse the environment in which the organization exists to identify opportunities that will benefit the organization 
  • identify constraints that might prevent the achievement of business outcomes and define how those constraints could be removed or their effects reduced 
  • decide and agree the organization’s perspective and direction with relevant stakeholders, including its vision, mission, and principles 
  • establish the perspective and position of the organization relative to its customers and competitors. This includes defining which services and products will be delivered to which market spaces and how to maintain competitive advantage 
  • ensure that the strategy has been translated into tactical and operational plans for each organizational unit that is expected to deliver on the strategy 
  • ensure the strategy is implemented through execution of the strategic plans and coordination of efforts at the strategic, tactical, and operational levels 
  • manage changes to the strategies and related documents, ensuring that strategies keep pace with changes to internal and external environments and other relevant factors. 

Strategy management is often seen as the responsibility of the senior management and governing body of an organization. It enables them to set the objectives of the organization, to specify how the organization will meet those objectives, and to prioritize the investments that are required to meet them. However, in today’s complex, fast-changing environment, traditional strategy practices, based on careful deliberation, extensive research, and scenario planning, are also evolving. Strategy is becoming more fluid and there is an increased focus on establishing the essential purpose and principles of an organization, which can serve as the guiding direction for all its actions, even as circumstances change. For example, a Lean strategy process can be used to balance the extremes of rigid planning and uncontrolled experimentation. The strategy provides the overall direction and alignment of the organization, serving as both a screen that innovative ideas must pass and a basis for evaluating the success of the SVS. It encourages employees to be creative, while ensuring that they are in harmony with the organization and pursue only valuable opportunities. 

Strategy must enable value creation for the organization. A good business model describes the means of fulfilling an organization’s objectives. The strategy of the organization should include some way to make its services and products uniquely valuable to its customers; it must therefore define the organization’s approach for delivering better value. The need for a strategy is not limited to larger organizations; it is just as important for smaller ones, allowing them to have a clear perspective, positioning, and plans to ensure that they remain relevant to their customers. 

Customers want solutions that break through performance barriers and achieve higher-quality outcomes with little or no increase in cost. Such solutions are usually made available through innovative products and services. The strategy should balance the organization’s need to deliver both efficient and effective operations with innovation and future-focused activities. 

The value of products and services from either the customer’s or the organization’s perspective may alter over time due to changing conditions, events, or other factors outside an organization’s control. Strategy management ensures a carefully considered approach to the organization’s relationships with customers, as well as both agility and resilience in dealing with the variations in value that define those relationships. 

A high-performance strategy is one that enables an organization to consistently outperform competing alternatives over time, across business cycles, during industry disruptions, and when changes in leadership occur. It should be focused on what needs to be done across the organization to facilitate value creation 

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