The IT service management model represents a paradigm shift for IT organisations as it deemphasizes the management of IT assets and focuses on the provision of quality end-to-end IT services. This paper presents part of an in-depth study that examines the experience of a government agency, Queensland Health, in the implementation of a centralised IT service management model based on the ITIL framework. The paper sheds light on the challenges and breakthroughs, distils a set of critical success factors and offers a learning opportunity for other organisations. Outsourcing some activities and tool requirements to vendors was seen as one contributor to success although ensuring effective technology transfer to in-house staff was also necessary. Another success factor was centralisation of IT services. Commitment of senior management was also crucial as was a recognition of the need for effective change management to transform the organisational culture to a service-oriented focus.