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  1. Leadership
April 27, 2021updated 04 May 2021 3:31pm

Ensuring future viability in the modern service economy

As technology continues to change how consumers interact with products and services, organisations need to adapt if they are to survive – and thrive – in the modern service economy.

By gemma

From the way we work, to how we shop, socialise and interact with products and services, technology has transformed society. These rapid innovations, along with the challenges that come with operating in an increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment, means organisations cannot afford to stand still if they want to harness the opportunities of the modern service economy.

Digital-native organisations have disrupted the sector. Businesses must take a flexible and customer-centric approach to the creation, design and management of IT-enabled products and services to anticipate the latest trends and evolving requirements.

It is vital for businesses to put in place measures that enable rapid response to new opportunities and challenges. (Photo by Connect World/Shutterstock)

Professionals and organisations must also develop and harness new skillsets. By 2022, the World Economic Forum estimates 133 million jobs will be created to meet the demands of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, while the OECD predicts that one billion jobs will be transformed by technology in the next decade.

Furthermore, the existing challenges organisations have always faced remain, including staying relevant to customers, reducing costs, mitigating risk and improving efficiencies, while maintaining, growing and reaching new markets, and organising remote and global workforces.

Co-create value and future-proof organisations

In this context, it is vital for businesses to put in place measures that enable rapid response to new opportunities and challenges.

It is no longer enough to deliver the quickest, cheapest option. Rather, organisations need to consider how their IT-enabled products and services can co-create value with all stakeholders, keeping in mind that value is subjective and will vary between different organisations and roles. Value is only realised if all relevant stakeholders see the benefits.

Improving employee experience and productivity

The 2019 ‘Disruption Drives Reskilling and Upskilling’ study by Lighthouse Research and Advisory and Human Resource Executive, found that 70% of respondents had left a job due to lack of career development, but 95% would have stayed if career growth opportunities had been available. Moreover, research by the Work Institute, cited in the same report, revealed the average cost of employee turnover is 33% of the position’s salary.

With the impending skills gap, organisations have the opportunity to reskill and upskill their employees to help ensure the future viability of their businesses, while retaining existing talent; boosting teams with up-to-date knowledge, and saving on time, resource and cost of re-hiring.

Remain relevant and meet customer demands

Technology has changed how we interact with IT-enabled products and services, fuelling new behaviours, demands and experiences. Today, consumers and users expect more. By taking a customer-centric approach to IT-enabled product and service delivery, organisations can ensure their clients feel valued and understood. Offerings should be available, accessible, reliable and functional and delivered through an omnichannel approach.

Customer experience is critical in the modern service economy, especially when there is competition from digital-native organisations. This means soft skills such as empathy, fairness and transparency are also important considerations when creating, designing and managing IT-enabled products and services.

Optimise digital product and service management

Cost-effectiveness, efficiency, flexibility, reliability and continual implementation are all must-have features for modern service economy offerings.

Forward-thinking leaders are now able to develop cross-functional multidisciplinary teams through training in certifications that provide broad and specialist knowledge of IT Service Management, proven and emerging technologies, and innovative ways of working. This enables leaders to embed a common language across teams for better collaboration, break down work siloes and build a culture for success.

Future-proofing your organisation with ITIL 4

ITIL 4 is a widely recognised framework for IT-enabled products and services, and has provided real-world best practice concepts, practices and proven guidance to organisations and professionals globally for more than 30 years.

It is composed of six core certifications and guidance publications that offer a comprehensive body of knowledge for optimising IT-enabled products and service management.

The globally recognised ITIL 4 certifications and guidance enable a structured approach to learning and development for professionals at any stage of their career and will equip them with a clear capability model aligned to an organisation’s strategy, desired outcomes and customer needs.

When adopted and adapted by an organisation, ITIL 4 will ensure cross-functional multidisciplinary teams learn the concepts, tools, techniques, and best practice guidance to establish core practices and behaviours for unlocking value.

There are two primary designations that employees and teams can obtain through the ITIL 4 certification scheme.

The ITIL 4 Managing Professional designation provides practical and technical knowledge about how to run successful IT-enabled products and services, teams, and workflows, for a variety of professionals working in IT, IT service management (ITSM) and other digital roles across the business.

Then, there is the ITIL 4 Strategic Leader designation, which enables current and aspiring leaders to recognise the value of adopting and adapting ITIL 4 for all IT-enabled products and services, not just IT operations. This designation also helps professionals to understand how IT can influence and shape business strategy and provides guidance on managing and operationalising the strategy across the organisation.

Certified and verified

Together, the five certifications that form the ITIL 4 Managing Professional and the ITIL 4 Strategic Leader designation provide deeper knowledge of the collaborative approaches for co-creating value, offer guidance on how to align IT strategies with business objectives, improve the customer experience, and build a digital culture with effective communication strategies.

Moreover, the certifications help organisations to adopt lean, agile and DevOps approaches within IT service management practices, optimise IT-enabled products and services in line with technological innovations including cloud, AI, and machine learning, and discover ways to plan and prioritise work to improve flow and reduce waste.

ITIL 4 Foundation is the prerequisite certification for all the ITIL 4 Managing Professional and ITIL 4 Strategic Leader certifications and is the first step for certifying your cross-functional multidisciplinary teams. ITIL 4 Foundation will introduce key elements, concepts and terminology which enables candidates to look at IT service management through an end-to-end operating model.

With ITIL 4, your organisation can understand what value is and unlock it; reduce downtime and wasteful work; improve employee experience and productivity; foster a culture of resilience and psychological safety; and effectively optimise, streamline, and deliver innovative IT-enabled products and services that are relevant and meet evolving customer needs.

Visit to learn more, including how to get your team trained in ITIL 4.

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