Tipu: a method for service management Continual Service Improvement (CSI)

ImageTipu is on Google+

Tipu tih poo or tee poo, short equal syllables (New Zealand Maori) n. growth, v. to grow Other unrelated meanings of "tipu"
There are so many aspects of running an organisation to deliver services, including dozens that directly deliver: sales, supplier management, facilities, infrastructure, human resource planning, stock control...

...and dozens more that are not directly part of the value chain: finance, design, monitoring, disaster recovery, security, audit, training, reporting, customer helpdesk...

Almost all of them would return nett benefit if you invested in improving them. It is likely you have multiple projects underway to improve a few of them. But there are only so many projects you can run at once. What of all the other areas?

There is an expectation that professional staff will make improvements in their own areas as a regular part of their role.
There is an approach known as Continual Service Improvement that identifies and plans for improvements.

Tipu™ combines both concepts. Tipu is a method for creating and executing a service improvement programme which centrally plans, prioritises and coordinates the efforts of staff to improve the organisation as part of business as usual. It has something to contribute to everyone wanting to improve Service Management.

By all means run as many formal improvement projects as you can. For the rest of the organisation there is Tipu.

Tipu is more about incremental improvement than transformational improvement, i.e. it's about all the other stuff that projects don't cover. You CAN include your formal improvement projects as part of the overall Tipu programme, but the main thrust is what you might characterise as "miscellaneous improvement". Transformational improvement - big changes - should really be managed as a project. Tipu is for "everything else".

Tipu is free, open content.

Tipu includes:

  • Advice and guidance on approaching CSI
  • SIP planning templates and method
  • A framework for decomposing SM into manageable tasks smaller than "processes"
  • An architecture for creating true practices not just "processes"
  • Other resources as we dream them up

Tipu is not getting further development right now. Help yourself, there are some good ideas in there for you:
- Agile CSI
- grass-roots champions
- doing CSI as BAU not project: it's "continual" dammit
- don't make one person or team own CSI, everyone else cops out
- don't "do ITIL"
- don't improve great lumps of process, get granular

Want Tipu? You can find Tipu core content and other resources here.

For more information on Tipu:

Easy Tipu - the basic approach
Tipu principles
Tipu value statement
Tipu and CSI, a discussion
Tipu and kanban?, a discussion
Tipu framework
Tipu tools, some suggestions for software

A presentation on Tipu:

and a 7-minute video:


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How many organisations..

are currently doing this in practise? I have started something here in our environment, but I have yet to actually meet anyone else running an ongoing CSI programme (specifically identified and supported as such) across their entire IT environment.


How many are doing CSI or how many are doing Tipu?

CSI is not common, because the book doesn't lay out a structured methodology.

Tipu is only in pilot with a few clients at this stage

The Case Against Radical Change

"radical change rarely works. It is neither strategy nor action, but rather cry of desperation. It’s a sign that someone who hasn’t been thinking seriously now yearns to be taken seriously. Most of all, it’s an indication that the worst is still yet to come...

The dirty little secret of revolutionary change is that it requires an evolutionary mindset. It’s the thankless day-to-day discipline, rigor and privation undertaken over a period of years that makes things happen, not grandstanding pronouncements and transformative visions. "

The Case Against Radical Change http://www.digitaltonto.com/2011/the-case-against-radical-change/

Sounds good

It would be good to see if Tipu addresses all the issues you have with ITIL. :-)

Implementing ITSM with Agile CSI

I have heard of the IT Skeptic for a while, and read some of his blog articles.

I have studied and implemented ITIL for over half of a decade now, and I have seen the many shortcomings of it. I like ITIL, but as any completeness-based framework, it is doomed to fail. Totality (or completeness) is not possible to manage without a dictatorship calling the shots.

My previous partner and I came up with a similar concept to Tipu last year: http://isene.wordpress.com/2010/08/25/people-focus-with-liquid/ But we failed to roll it out due to lack of focus.

Since then, I have switched employers to a Scrum-based consultancy firm who runs all projects by the Agile principles. I have recently established CSI here, based on the Agile methodology. From what I can gather here, Tipu seems like exactly what I have been working on. I have some takes on ABC in ICT (http://www.abcatwork.nl) as well, that perhaps should be a part of a framework like Tipu.

Feel free to contact me for a chat. :)


Watch this space

Yes i think you will like Tipu. You'll like its empowerment, its laissez faire management, and its emphasis on cultural change driving practices change. Hopefully I'll get some time over Christmas to deliver. Sadly I'll be without electricity for two weeks which won't help progress.