The ITIL qualification scheme provides a modular approach to the ITIL framework, and is comprised of a series of qualifications focused on different aspects of ITIL best practice to various degrees of depth and detail. ITIL is a widely accepted approach to IT Service Management (ITSM), which has been adopted by individuals and organizations across the world. ITIL provides a cohesive set of best practice, drawn from the public and private sectors internationally.
Because ITSM is driven both by technology and the huge range of organizational environments in which it operates, it is constantly evolving. ITIL 2007 edition (previously known as version 3) is an extension of ITIL v2 and fully replaced it following the completion of the withdrawal period on 30 June 2011. ITIL 2007 provides a more holistic perspective on the full life cycle of services, covering the entire IT organization and all supporting components needed to deliver services to the customer, whereas v2 focused on specific activities directly related to service delivery and support. Most of the v2 activities remained untouched in 2007, but some significant changes in terminology were introduced in order to facilitate the expansion. The course covers the following five lifecycle stages:
The center and origin point of the ITIL Service Lifecycle, the ITIL Service Strategy (SS) volume, provides guidance on clarification and prioritization of service-provider investments in services. More generally, Service Strategy focuses on helping IT organizations improve and develop over the long term. In both cases, Service Strategy relies largely upon a market-driven approach. Key topics covered include service value definition, business-case development, service assets, market analysis, and service provider types.
The Service Design (SD) volume provides good-practice guidance on the design of IT services, processes, and other aspects of the service management effort. Significantly, design within ITIL is understood to encompass all elements relevant to technology service delivery, rather than focusing solely on design of the technology itself. As such, service design addresses how a planned service solution interacts with the larger business and technical environments, service management systems required to support the service, processes which interact with the service, technology, and architecture required to support the service, and the supply chain required to support the planned service. Within ITIL, design work for an IT service is aggregated into a single Service Design Package (SDP). Service design packages, along with other information about services, are managed within the service catalogues.
Service transition (ST), as described by the ITIL service transition volume, relates to the delivery of services required by a business into live/operational use, and often encompasses the “project” side of IT rather than business as usual (BAU). This area also covers topics such as managing changes to the BAU environment.
Service Operation (SO) aims to provide best practice for achieving the delivery of agreed levels of services both to end-users and the customers (where “customers” refer to those individuals who pay for the service and negotiate the SLAs). Service operation, as described in the ITIL Service Operation volume, is the part of the life cycle where the services and value is actually directly delivered. Also the monitoring of problems and balance between service reliability and cost etc. are considered. The functions include technical management, application management, operations management and service desk as well as, responsibilities for staff engaging in Service Operation.
Continual service improvement, defined in the ITIL continual service improvement volume, aims to align and realign IT services to changing business needs by identifying and implementing improvements to the IT services that support the business processes. It incorporates many of the same concepts articulated in the Deming Cycle of Plan-Do-Check-Act. The perspective of CSI on improvement is the business perspective of service quality, even though CSI aims to improve process effectiveness, efficiency and cost effectiveness of the IT processes through the whole lifecycle. To manage improvement, CSI should clearly define what should be controlled and measured.