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What is ITIL?

Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is the only consistent and comprehensive documentation of best practices for IT Service Management (ITSM). It is a customizable framework of good practices designed to manage IT systems, with an emphasis on the contribution of IT to business practices. ITIL is a top-down, business-driven approach to the management of IT Services, and specifically addresses the strategic business value generated by the IT organization and its delivery of high-quality IT services. ITIL is designed to focus on the people,  processes, and technology that IT organizations handle.

ITIL is primarily aimed at the following:

  • IT service providers
  • IT directors and managers
  • Chief Information officers

The terms ITIL and IT Infrastructure Library are registered trademarks of the United Kingdom’s Office of Government Commerce (OGC).

ITIL History:

What is now called ITIL version 1 was developed under the auspices of the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA), and expanded over several years to 31 volumes in a project. The publications were renamed to indicate their use as guides rather than as formal methods.

Though ITIL was developed during the 1980s, it was not widely adopted until the mid-1990s. This wider adoption and awareness has led to a number of standards, including ISO/IEC 20000, which is an international standard covering the IT Service Management elements of ITIL. ITIL is often considered alongside other best-practice frameworks such as the Information Services Procurement Library (ISPL), the Application Services Library (ASL), Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM), and the Capability Maturity Model (CMM/CMMI). It is often linked with IT governance through Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT). In December 2005, the OGC issued notice of an ITIL refresh commonly known as ITIL v3, which became available in May 2007.

Overview of ITIL V3 Library:

ITIL v3 is comprised of the following five parts:

  1. Service Strategy is the identification of market opportunities for which services can be developed in order to meet requirements from internal or external customers. The output is a strategy for the design, implementation, maintenance, and continual improvement of the service as an organizational capability and a strategic asset. Key areas of this volume are Service Portfolio Management and Financial Management. Service strategy is the hub of the ITIL core.
  2. Service Design focuses on the activities that take place in order to transform strategy into a design document that addresses all aspects of a proposed service, as well as the processes intended to support it. Key areas of this volume are Availability Management, Capacity Management, Continuity Management, and Security Management.
  3. Service Transition focuses on the implementation of the output of service design activities and the creation of a production service or modification of an existing service. There is an area of overlap between Service Transition and Service Operation. Key areas of this volume are Change Management, Release Management, Configuration Management, and Service Knowledge Management.
  4. Service Operation focuses on the activities required to operate the services and maintain their functionality as defined in the Service Level Agreements. Key areas of this volume are Incident Management, Problem Management, and Request Fulfillment. A new process that has been added to this area is Event Management, which is concerned with normal and exception condition events.
  5. Continual Service Improvement focuses on the ability to deliver continual improvements to the quality of the services that the IT organization delivers to the business. Key areas of this volume are Service Reporting, Service Measurement, and Service Level Management.

Certification Program:

There are currently three levels of certification in the ITIL qualification scheme:

  • The Foundation Certificate is designed to provide a foundational level of knowledge in IT Service Management, and is aimed at all personnel who wish to become familiar with the best practices for IT Service Management, as defined in ITIL. The Foundation Certificate in particular enables people to understand the terminology used within ITIL.
  • The Practitioner’s Certificate is aimed at those who are responsible within their organization for designing specific processes within the IT Service Management discipline, and for performing the activities that belong to those processes. The Practitioner’s Certificate focuses on the depth of understanding and application of those subjects, treating each subject as a specialization.
  • The Manager’s Certificate is aimed at those who need to demonstrate a capability for managing ITIL-based solutions across a range of Service Management subjects.

ITIL Certifications are managed by the ICMB (ITIL Certification Management Board) which is composed of the OGC, IT Service Management Forum (itSMF) International, and two examination institutes – EXIN (based in the Netherlands) and ISEB (based in the United Kingdom).

SAP IT Service Management:

With the new The specified item was not found. in SAP CRM 7.0, SAP enables the implementation of ITIL aligned processes and functions: 

  • IT Service Desk
  • Incident and Service Request Management
  • Problem Management including Knowledge Articles in SAP CRM
  • Change and Approval Management
  • IT Object (and Asset) Management
  • Service Contract and Service Level Management
  • IT Financial Management
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