Establish and maintain descriptions of the organization’s defined standard services.


Establishing the properties of standard services is not sufficient. These properties should also be packaged into specific descriptions. In addition to a set of descriptions used by the service provider, a separate version is typically needed for customer use. A common failure mode with the use of standard services is that they are defined and described to meet the needs of some staff in the service provider organization but not described in a manner that is effective and appropriate for all intended users of standard services. For successful use, standard services should be appropriately described for the full range of intended users of the descriptions.

Example Work Products

  1. Descriptions of services
  2. Service catalog or menu
  3. Adjunct materials such as instructions for delivery staff, sales force instructions, proposal and pricing information, and contracting information


1. Develop the descriptions of standard services for all relevant users.

Additional materials related to the standard services can also be developed if they do not already exist. These materials can include information for those who develop specific services, service delivery staff, or sales and other business staff.

2. Conduct peer reviews on the descriptions with relevant stakeholders.

Customer and end-user representatives can be included in these peer reviews to ensure that the descriptions meet their information needs.

3. Revise the descriptions as necessary.

4. Store the descriptions in a location and medium where all intended users have access.

To be effective, standard service descriptions should be available and accessible in a consistent location that encourages use by the full range of intended users. The location can be a large, complex online repository or a single sheet of paper, depending on the characteristics of the services and organization.

While the catalog or menu of services is often in an electronic format, many organizations also produce a paper version. Adjunct materials can be stored along with the descriptions, such as the tailoring guidelines or instructions for the delivery staff, sales force, proposal authors, and contract specialists. Variants of the service catalog or menu may be required for customers and staff of the service provider organization.


Examples of locations for a standard service repository include the following:
  • Configuration management database
  • Web pages
  • Document portfolio or library
  • Process asset library