Today IT Operations Managers are faced with increased demands to deliver reliable and available IT services for the business. In addition to the day-to-day operational requirements, there are the increasing demands of providing a secure and compliant IT infrastructure based on an always changing landscape of corporate polices, regulatory compliance, and security recommendations such as those required in SOX, HIPAA, PCI, NERC, and others. Most organizations today, depending on industry, are dealing with one to six regulatory compliances.
So how does IT operations reconcile the many requirements in a cost efficient way? Most organizations have realized that the only way to manage this matrix of requirements is by adopting a framework like ITIL Service Management Framework or Microsoft Operations Framework, among others. This is a great solution, but these frameworks can be complex and require a certain amount of expertise to get started.
There is an easy way to get started. Most regulatory compliance initiatives have one thing in common; they are trying to protect the privacy of information and reduce the vulnerability of systems. IT Operations Managers can achieve improved controls by:
- Documenting your IT assets, including criticality
- Establishing secure baselines based on criticality
- Implementing strong change control processes based on best practices
- Monitoring for configuration changes on a regular basis
Implementing an ITIL-based solution for automating the change control and configuration management processes can help your organization automate these four steps while reducing the complexity of integrating the ITIL Service Management Framework into your IT operations. Since the best practices are built into the product you don't need extensive expertise to take advantage of the best practices. Once you get more experience, the processes can be adapted to meet more specific needs of your organization.
Get started automating your IT service management processes and you will find that continuous compliance is easier and less costly.