Last weekend I had the pleasure of shopping at our local IKEA to purchase a flatpack bookshelf. No this blog is not about the process itself in trying to navigate your way through the maze of IKEA (though don’t get me started on their pick up process).  Rather this blog is about the whole process of  providing an end to end service of designing, manufacturing and constructing my 4 shelf, mahogany, veneer, click, snap and screw mdf bookshelf… as it relates to ITIL® Continuous Service Model…of course!

Before I start, it’s ironic, but what better way to demonstrate CSI than through that wonderful world of IKEA

Stage 1 – Service Strategy – I can just imagine the round table strategic planning meeting with key stakeholders, plotting how to take the clone the concept of Lego and child’s play and continue it into adulthood – welcome the DIY method of building furniture, ensuring that the philosophy of “hours of fun” is considered – aka customer needs – hands rubbing, considering financial management(aka profit) as well as the grand plan of offering every product needed for a house( excluding exterior – too much cardboard packaging – environmental issues here). – Welcome Service Portfolio.

Stage 2 – Service Design – When considering world flatpack domination, they had to consider can they accommodate this future grand plan – do they have the capacity for growth, those ideas in the “pipeline”? But hang on – when they do – how will they cope with the demand for these heavy, cumbersome and “easy to assemble” pieces of technology?

Stage 3- Service Transition – Testing, Testing Testing – IKEA’s primary objective – and to prove it to you – they even simulate hours of use of the ergo dynamic comfort chair just to show you the level of testing they go through.  However – I don’t recall seeing then demonstrate the hours of use of that little thing called the allen key.  I wonder if the saying “Here’s one that I prepared earlier” was generated in the IKEA showroom? To ensure that quality of product was rolled out to the same specifications, every flatpack came with its own visual instructions – ensuring knowledge management (and later KEDB) was consistent, no matter who the customer was ( gamut approach – 7-70year – no difference in approach…)

Stage 4 – Service Operation – This would have to be the biggest phase for IKEA.  They must have known that when you give the average Joe Blow a flatpack, allen key and picture instructions, that you are going to need one hell of a service desk operation, containing all sorts of management functions – right down to spare plastic clippie things departments. 

CSI – this is my all time favourite phase for IKEA. If the focus is on CSI – they would have to make sure that there is always room for improvement.  This is where the IKEA as we know it really comes to the fore…. How many times have you tried to put together a piece of IKEA furniture, and either had pieces missing, or worse – pieces left over – or cursed because it “just didn’t fit”? – if it was perfect – how could they improve?


So – if anyone knows how to fix my leaning tower of mahogany veneer – I would appreciate advice!


Till next time Cheers from the ITIL® Australia Team at The Art of Service