Report highlights service and support issues when adopting cloud computing

My latest article on cloud computing is available at the below links and is also reproduced here

Businesses adopting cloud computing services need ask a range of questions about support, backup and security to ensure that they receive adequate levels of service from their provider, according to a new report.

“Cloud computing and cloud based services are growing exponentially, yet many are unaware of the questions they need to ask to ensure quality of service,” said Mark O’Loughlin, head of cloud advisory and consulting at Auxilion and author of the report.

The IT service management and cloud computing report highlights key issues that need to be discussed with the provider before implementing cloud services, including the legal jurisdiction the data stored in and the level of service and back up provided.

“For example, customers may assume that their applications and services are fully resilient and backed-up, only to find out during a service outage that they have inadequate arrangements in place,” O’Loughlin said.

“The legal jurisdiction of where the data is stored also poses serious legal and compliance issues such as who has access to the data from a legal perspective and what data protection laws apply.”

The report advisers that cloud computing and cloud based services customers should expect, and demand, at least the same levels of service as those provided by traditional IT service providers and internal IT organisations.

And it recommends implementing ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) principles to support the adoption and use of cloud computing and cloud based services.

“Applied properly, cloud computing has huge cost and productivity benefits,” said O’Loughlin. “For example, businesses no longer need to procure, operate and maintain full and complete back-end IT infrastructure and applications. In addition, smart phone and tablet devices have enabled new mobile business models which did not exist ten years ago, via cloud enabled applications and improvements in data communications and broadband access and speeds.

“However, when adopting cloud computing and cloud based services, businesses should not forget the basic principles of IT service management.”

Speaking at itSMF UK conference and exhibition 2014

ITSM14, the annual conference and exhibition of itSMF UK, returns to the Novotel London West in Hammersmith on 10th and 11th November 2014.

This year I will be speaking on the topic of “Cloud Service Management – A New Beginning. What You Need to Know”.

This session continues on from my presentation at last year’s event.

What you will learn:

Whether we like it or not, cloud computing is both disruptive and here to stay for a long time. The disruptive nature of cloud introduces the idea of Hybrid IT where the design, development and management of cloud services and traditional ITSM services converge. The question so how do you adapt today, what you need tomorrow to manage IT and cloud based services?

The overarching tenant of this presentation is to inform attendees how to utilise their existing investment in ITIL processes, functions, structures and training while taking advantage of cloud computing and cloud based services.

The presentation will provide relevant examples to the attendees on issues, pitfalls, and easy wins when adapting to deliver and support cloud based services. The message is clear. Do not throw out your ITIL / ITSM setup. I plan to explain how to do this with practical examples.

I will be speaking on Monday 10th November between 15:20-16:20. The agenda can be found here.

All attendees to my session will have the opportunity to win a number of free vouchers for an e-book courtesy of Van Haren publishing.

The voucher entitles the lucky winner(s) to download a free e-book from the extensive Van Haren Library.


itSMF UK Conference 2013 – ITSM13

It’s Getting Cloudy in IT Service Management

“I had the pleasure of chairing a session Mark ran at the itSMF UK conference.  Over the years I have seen many presentations purporting to demystify cloud operations, but Mark’s was the first to really deliver.  His explanations were clear, his examples were credible and his suggestions both practical and pragmatic.  He easily engaged the audience and although representing a company selling cloud solutions, he never came across as selling anything other than his obvious passion for the subject”

Martin Neville

Head of Service Management Integration

Jaguar Land Rover

itSMF Canada – Conference 2013

There were no clouds to be seen in Toronto on May 6th when Mark presented.

In the sphere of ITSM – Cloud best practices are still emerging.   Mark provided just the right amount of balanced insight and relevance into how Cloud is changing the role of IT in the delivery of services, and how it affects our relationship with our suppliers and the business.

Judging by the terrific audience engagement during the Q & A period, Mark clearly hit a few key Cloudy points of interest – the importance of understanding up front the value of Cloud for the business; the costs associated with increased business demand over time; the new challenges of end to end SLAs and Change Management in a Cloud model; and the changing roles within IT – less control and more focus on being a strategic ‘broker’ between the business and external service providers.

Mark’s presentation re-enforced to me that while Cloud introduces new challenges in the delivery of IT Services, the ITSM V3 framework becomes even more relevant in executing great service delivery.  A great presentation Mark!

Consultant, Intact Financial Corporation

itSMF Ireland and ISACA Ireland Conference – IT Governance 2012

itSMF Ireland are running our first conference in conjunction with
ISACA. As a member of the board of directors of itSMF Ireland,  I am delighted that we have the opportunity to run this event for our members. We are looking forward to hearing from some excellent speakers.

The event is open for both members and non-members of itSMF Ireland and ISACA. The cost for attending the event represents great value for money considering how much other day long events and conferences cost.

Friday, 12 October 2012, at 9am

Friday, 12 October 2012, at 5pm

Alexander Hotel Dublin


itSMF Ireland and ISACA are delighted to announce that the two chapters will host a full-day conference on IT governance.

The conference will feature both local and international speakers, vendor exhibits and IT service management simulation games and provides an opportunity to network with colleagues from IT service management, audit and security.

The conference will cover topics such as governance, ITIL, mobile security, service improvement, professionalism in service management and COBIT 5. In addition, there will be a panel discussion featuring industry experts.

The keynote speaker is Billy Hawkes, Ireland's Data Protection Commissioner.

Derek McCullagh, chairman of itSMF Ireland, said itSMF Ireland is delighted to be collaborating with ISACA in staging this conference.

ItSMF Ireland

The Irish chapter of ISACA was formed in 1998 to cater for the growing group of people in Ireland interested in information systems audit and security issues.

The itSMF is the only truly independent and internationally recognised forum for IT service management professionals worldwide. itSMF Ireland is a not-for-profit organisation and is a prominent player in the on-going development and promotion of IT service management best practice, standards and qualifications.

To book your place for the conference and for more information on both organisations and this event, please visit the itSMF Ireland website and the ISACA website.


Member fee: €50

Non-member fee: €70

Irish chapter of of itSMF raises much needed funds for local charity.

Latest press release from itSMF Ireland.

Irish chapter of IT Service Management Forum (itSMF) raises €3,200 funds for Laura Lynn House.

Fundraising event marks announcement of the itSMF supported charity.

Dublin, 8th August, 2012: The Irish chapter of the IT Service Management Forum (itSMF) has raised €3,200 from members and sponsors for the Laura Lynn House following a recent itSMF event held in Dublin.  Laura Lynn House is the supported charity of itSMF Ireland.

itSMF Ireland, an independent forum for IT Service Management professionals, holds regular events throughout the year promoting the on-going development of IT Service Management best practice, standards and qualifications.  The next diary event is a one day conference in partnership with ISACA and is to be held on Friday 12th October 2012 (   The Irish chapter also announced a new call for members as the forum continues to gather traction in Ireland.

Funds for Laura Lynn House were raised through a raffle and donations from members attending the event and support from key corporate sponsors including Arkphire, Davern ITSM, Fujitsu, Irish Life & Permanent, Van Haren Publishing, Vero Solutions and Bank of Ireland.

Bank of Ireland matched the money raised on the night through its community investment and charity initiative, “Give Together” bringing the total raised to €3,200.

Mark O’Loughlin, Director at itSMF Ireland said “We are delighted to have the opportunity to support Laura Lynn House and raise these much needed funds for such a deserving cause. Thank you to all our members who participated and those who provided the prizes for the event.”

Supporting children with life limiting conditions and their families, the Laura Lynn House( provides high quality transitional care, home support, respite, crisis and end of-life care, thereby making the last days of a child’s life more bearable for children and their families.

Pictured is Derek McCullagh, Chairman itSMF Ireland, Johnny Cox, Bank of Ireland and Sarah Meagher, Children’s Sunshine Home & Laura Lynn House.