ITIL v3 – An Introduction

The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is a best practice IT Service Management framework developed by the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) within the UK government. It has been developed in collaboration with leading industry experts, consultants and practitioners over the last 20 years.

Since its launch, ITIL has been widely accepted throughout the world as the de facto standard for best practice in IT Service Management. ITIL Version 3 adopts a greater business focus for IT because IT assets are integrated with the Business Strategy and Business Outcomes.

While ITIL V2 served its purpose of making IT organizations aware that IT service management could be done better, ITIL V3 provides the detail on how to make them better. By carving IT up into silos of purpose of Strategy, Design, Transition, Operation and Improvement, ITIL V3 provides guidance on how to:

  1. Align service delivery team members (internal and external) with the domain silo they are responsible for within their respective departmental silos.
  2. Build out the process areas to ensure that team members are operating within the ITIL guidelines specified for each domain.
  3. Select and implement products and or services that will automate any or all aspects of the domain workflow and task requirements.


The figure below represents the five domains of ITIL’s IT Service lifecycle.

It is important to note that most of the processes defined do not get executed within only one lifecycle phase. As an example:

1. Service Strategy Phase:

Determine the needs, priorities, demands and relative importance for desired services. Identifies the value being created through services and the predicted financial resources required to design, deliver and support them.

2. Service Design Phase:

Designs the infrastructure, processes and support mechanisms needed to meet the Availability requirements of the customer.

3. Service Transition Phase:

Validates that the Service meets the functional and technical fitness criteria to justify release to the customer.

4. Service Operation Phase:

Monitors the ongoing Availability being provided. During this phase we also manage and resolve incidents that affect Service Availability.

5. Continual Service Improvement Phase:

Coordinates the collection of data, information and knowledge regarding the quality and performance of services supplied and Service Management activities performed. Service Improvement Plans developed and coordinated to improve any aspect involved in the management of IT services.

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