ITIL and the Cloud

There is no doubt that a current shortfall of a defined global best-practice for cloud computing is creating challenges. However previous investments in IT management structures and best practices such as ITIL® can be capitalized on and provide a solid foundation for managing cloud based services and hybrid IT environments.

Click here to read my latest blog for Auxilion, and watch the interview on how ITIL best practices can be utilised in cloud computing.

Cloud Showcase Event

See what an ISO20000 certified & ITIL aligned IT operation looks like in the cloud.

Auxilion provides 24x7 IT Support Services to some of the largest Irish and international organisations around the globe – entirely from the cloud.

Join us on Friday June 26th at our Service Operations Centre in Park West where Cloud Service Management experts Karl Howley and Mark O’Loughlin will host a special workshop on getting best practice IT operations and support into the cloud

For more details

Webinar. Understanding IT Service Management for Cloud Computing.

I recently delivered the following webinar for AXELOS where I provide an overview of the IT Service Management and Cloud Computing White Paper which I wrote for AXELOS.

The webinar provides a brief history of cloud computing and identifies areas that should be adapted to yield the benefits of cloud computing. Recommendations are provided throughout the webinar.

Great News. Professional Cloud Service Manager

Great to see @PinkElephantUK delivered another Professional Cloud Service Manager #PCSM  course.

Excellent feedback was received from the delegates and Pink retain their 100% exam success rate with this course.

This is great news for me personally as both the author and creator of the course and as the trainer who delivered this course for Pink Elephant UK.

More news on this great achievement to follow.

If you would like details about the Professional Cloud Service Manager course, please let me know.

Additional details can be found here.

Cloud Computing. A Brief History in Time

At a recent speech I gave at an event in Dublin, I discussed the history of cloud computing and its origins.

I was speaking on behalf of Auxilion, an Irish IT managed services company moving and supporting organisation in the cloud.

As I was talking to a room on non-technical people I purposefully kept the details light, high-level and of a non-technical nature.

Basically the origins of cloud computing are very simple, but require the latest technologies to enable people to receive the benefits of using the cloud.

I have saved the details up to Slide Share where you can download a or view a copy of the presentation.

Download a copy from here now!

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.


The IT profession and the cloud. Are technical competencies on their way out?

I was interviewed recently by AXELOS (owners of ITIL) regarding the disruptive nature of cloud computing and its effect on traditional IT jobs. A transcript of that interview is included below with a link to the complete interview.


Cloud computing is a disruptive innovation for business and IT, changing how technology services are provided for both consumers and service providers.

In practice, cloud computing promises to deliver various IT and compute services quicker, faster and cheaper - without the need for ownership of the whole IT infrastructure. Even typical IT service providers may no longer own certain parts of their IT infrastructure. They may choose to outsource that to a cloud provider in order to capitalize on the economies of scale and lower costs.

But what are the competencies needed to manage this shift in the IT landscape?

Organizations are slowly becoming aware of the need to upskill both their technical and business knowledge in order to 1) understand the shift cloud computing introduces 2) understand how to capitalize on the benefits that cloud adoption brings and 3) understand how to manage procure, integrate and manage cloud computing and cloud based services.

Even if the organization outsources various elements of its IT to a cloud provider it is true to say that, in this hybrid IT cloud model, training and education will be needed for practitioners to understand, work with and benefit from cloud computing.

Staff within technology and outsourced IT providers will absolutely need to be upskilled and certified to handle the requirements of designing, transitioning and managing cloud computing and cloud based services in hybrid IT environments.

Want to know more? Read the complete article here:

Congratulations - Winners

Congratulations to the following people who recently won free e-Book vouchers after attending my session on Service Management for Cloud Computing.

A big thank you to to Ivo van Haren for providing the e-Book vouchers.

Vouchers can be used to obtain a free e-Book from here:

The winners are:

Gediz Curgul
Savita Robert
Barry O'Sullivan
Daytinn Kros
Stig Bjørling Ellingsen

Well done all, and thank you for attending.


Positioning Cloud Credential Council’s Professional Cloud Portfolio for Rapid Adoption

I recently delivered a webinar with Mark Skilton discussing the new portfolio of professional cloud training courses and certifications available from the Cloud Credential Council.

The webinar is available here, with a chapter listing below if you would like to skip to a relevant section quickly.

Webinar Recording


Q&A with Mark O’Loughlin discussing Cloud Computing for ITSM

 The following is Q&A with Mark O’Loughlin discussing Cloud Computing for ITSM. This interview was held in advance of the itSMF Estonia conference.

On December 2nd, itSMF Estoniais hosting their 9th annual full-English conference, presenting a wide range of topics around ITSM, including DevOps and Cloud. Delegates will be able to enjoy a truly international selection of speakers, including Kevin Behr (co-author of The Phoenix Project) and Adrian Cockcroft (previously Cloud Architect at Netflix).

Attendance fees range from €50 to €100, which is more than a bargain, and to top that, Van Haren Publishing will be giving a free e-book to every delegate.

Leading up to this event, Mark O’Loughlin, as recognised industry leader in the field of service management and cloud computing, shares his view on Cloud Computing. He explains how Cloud Computing is changing IT Service Management, with a Q&A of his presentation at the itSMF UK Conference this November.


Q. Can you give a quick recap of the intro to your session at the itSMF UK Conference?

A. Cloud computing is changing how IT is provided, moving many elements of ownership and control away from in-house and individual IT providers. Therefore this shift in the industry brings about changes which organisations need to be aware of in order to address them.

I provided an overview of the effect of cloud computing on existing IT management practices, including IT service management (ITSM) and ITIL best practices


Q. Why is cloud computing important?

A. Cloud computing is a disruptive innovation in business and IT models. It is disruptive because it is changing how IT products and services are being provided for both the consumer and the service provider. Cloud computing is moving organizations away from the traditional software licensing models and premises-based data centre hosting to ‘pay-as-you-go’ or utility based pricing.

Over time, as the adoption of cloud computing increases, organizations will see a reduction in the IT infrastructure which they would have previously bought, operated and maintained.

Cloud computing does not fit every scenario, but where it does, the promise is one of scalability, lower cost, flexibility and reliability. Please note, it is incumbent on any organisation moving services to the cloud to check how these promises will be delivered.


Q. What does this mean to IT service management and service providers?

A. Cloud service providers are no different to traditional IT service providers in relation to their need to provide quality, cost-effective, secure and available IT services. When you move your services ‘to the cloud’, certain elements of how an organisation traditionally managed IT services will have to change. The difficulty is the lack of knowledge beforehand of what organisations need to change and how to make those changes.

In my presentation I provided a number of considerations and scenarios where organisations will have to adapt and change their processes and working method after outsourcing to a cloud provider, be it a full or partial outsource engagement.


Q. Does this mean organisations have to reinvent the wheel, so to speak, regarding how they run and manage their IT services?

A. Absolutely not. IT organizations using ITIL and other frameworks and standards, will be required to adapt certain elements of their operations to cater for the disruptive nature and benefits of cloud computing.

For those organizations using ITIL best practice and other frameworks and standards the message is clear: there is no need to undo the current IT organization and how it operates. The important thing is to identify the areas that need to be updated, changed or modified. This way organisations can profit from the added value that cloud computing can bring to the organization as well as to the customers and consumers.

These concepts and ideas are further explored in the recently released white paper by AXELOS.

Download a free copy here.


About Mark O’Loughlin:

Mark O’Loughlin is the founder, Managing Director and Principal Consultant of Red Circle Strategies. At Auxilion, Mark is Service Architect and principal consultant.

He is the former director of itSMF Ireland and one of the first people to be globally awarded with the ITIL® Master accreditation.

At the Cloud Credential Council, Mark is as director actively involved in creating and promoting best-practice for cloud computing and service management. He is also the Lead Author and Architect of the Professional Cloud Service Management course and certificate for the Cloud Credential Council. For further details click here.



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. Details of my 2013 presentation can be downloaded from here

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

Free white paper - IT service management and the cloud


Download a free copy of the AXELOS white paper on IT Service Management and Cloud Computing. This white paper was comissioned by AXELOS and written by Mark O'Loughlin of Red Circle Strategies.

What challenges and opportunities does cloud computing present for IT service management? White Paper Cover Page

Cloud computing presents both challenges and opportunities to IT organizations, businesses, customers and consumers. A current shortfall in best practice for the design, development, operation, management and improvement of cloud-based services may be seen as challenge for some within the industry. This is especially true for hybrid IT environments.

However, previous investments in IT management structures and best practices such as ITIL® can be capitalized on and provide a solid foundation for managing cloud based services and hybrid IT environments.

Do you want to find out the answers to these questions?

  • Why is cloud computing important?
  • What questions should be asked of a cloud service provider?
  • How can ITIL be adapted for cloud computing?

Answers to these questions are available in the new whitepaper published by AXELOS, the owners of ITIL.

Click in the link below to download this whitepaper for free.





Save the date. Cloud breakfast briefing. 3rd October 2014, 8.00am - 9.30am

Save the date. I will be attending the following breaskfast briefing. It will be great to see you there.

Auxilion, in conjunction with Microsoft, are hosting a breakfast briefing in the Convention Centre, Dublin to show you how organisations can gear their business for growth through four key shifts in modern technology.

Attendees will receive some excellent takeaways and a nice surprise. More details to follow.

Date: 3rd October 2014, 8.00am - 9.30am

Location: Convention Centre Dublin

Professional cloud certifications launched

ITpreneurs has officially launched their Professional Cloud certification trainings. These courses are accredited by the Cloud Credential Council (CCC), the world's premiere industry representation body in the cloud computing domain. Leverage these trainings to meet the increasing market demand for cloud professionals. Build the cloud-proficient capabilities of your clients' IT team in key roles.

Five professional-level training courses are now available leading to professional certification examinations delivered by the Cloud Credential Council.


Unique advantages to ITpreneurs Professional Cloud Portfolio include:

Business-focused: Most cloud trainings focus exclusively on technical skills. ITpreneurs Professional Cloud Portfolio focuses on how the cloud fits into business goals and strategies, and takes a 'whole-business' perspective; 

Vendor-neutral: Offers a 'big picture' that is not limited by vendor products or processes (making these trainings appropriate for clients who have previous vendor-based Cloud trainings);

Expert Lead Authors: Authors and peer review panels are international leaders in cloud computing, making the comprehensive, cutting-edge course books 'worth the price of the training';


Expand trainings with current clients:   You can offer Professional Cloud training to existing clients as a complement to other frameworks (including ITIL®, TOGAF®);

ITpreneurs sales enablement and operational support facilitate quick adoption of these trainings;

Training roadmaps help you to position the training to clients and end learners;

3-day Course delivered in Classroom or Virtual Classroom format; convenient eBook course book functions as an on-going reference for learners; instructors, instructor training guides, and Train the Trainer (TTT) programs are available.

Interested to learn how you can position and sell the CCC Professional Cloud Portfolio for rapid adoption? View this presentation by myself and Mark Skilton, lead authors of the courses.

Please let me know if you would like more information regarding these courses.

Normal service will be resumed

It has been a very exciting end to 2013 and 2014. I had taken a back seat to numerous activities including social media to work on something very special, and at the end take a well deserved break.

News of my adventures has already started to reach the light of day. So what is this I hear you ask.

I will be posting updates shortly and normal serivce will be resumed.