ITIL is a great place to start when you want to improve the quality of your IT service management. ITIL stands for “Information Technology Infrastructure Library,” and the framework has been around since the late 1980s. It is often referenced in national and international standards, such as ISO/IEC 20000-1:2011, the world standard for IT Service Management.
There are also plenty of books on this subject, so it’s no surprise that many organizations have already started their improvement journey with ITIL. That said, if you’re feeling in over your head when it comes to the technical jargon of ITIL, here’s a key concepts guide that should help fill in the gaps.
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Service quality depends on knowledge of ITIL key concepts
At times, what seems surprising is how little agreement there can be between different sources on what some key concepts in the framework mean. And while it might not sound like a big deal initially, having an incorrect understanding of essential terms could lead you down the wrong path on your quest for improved service quality.
The importance of ITIL certification
The widespread misinformation about the meaning of key concepts is one of the reasons why earning a certification in ITIL can be beneficial for yourself and your organization.
Securing an ITIL certification gives you the ability to help businesses plan and support their IT services in a manner that enhances their overall efficacy.
Businesses will likely choose an individual with ITIL certification because management understands that they can effortlessly focus on the things that matter, like the needs of the customers and their user experience.
Even though other frameworks align with some of its contents, none go into as much detail as ITIL does. When it comes to explaining how processes interact with each other or how they are designed to meet the customer’s needs and drive overall business success, ITIL leads the charge.
There are five distinct levels of ITIL certification one can choose based on their current experience and preference. They are ITIL Foundation, Practitioner, Intermediate, Expert, and Master. ITIL training is available through experienced providers like Beyond20.
While obtaining an official certificate that says you’re an ITIL expert might not be sufficient when it comes to convincing people of your competence, being able to say that you’ve passed the ITIL Expert level certification will boost your credibility and increase your chances of accomplishing work with the businesses of your choice.
What are the key concepts of ITIL?
The five core concepts of ITIL are service strategy, service design, service transition, service operation, and continuous improvement.
The service strategy concept focuses on ensuring that your IT service management strategy outlines how you plan to create value for the business while considering what services are needed and how you should provide them.
It also pays attention to determining which services the company should handle in-house, which could mean outsourcing them or even creating new departments within your organization.
Service design is all about designing processes to deliver valuable functionality for your customers and internal users. It’s more than just designing incident management, problem resolution, or change management.
This process also considers governance principles of Service Management (such as responsibility, authority, and communication), policies that outline acceptable behavior in certain areas of operation (like availability), and agreements with third parties required to provide certain services.
Service transition considers the changes that happen between two different lifecycle stages, like moving from service design to operations or making adjustments due to new requirements. It also pays attention to supporting these changes successfully so that they don’t become disruptions instead.
The service operation step focuses on improving how each process is done by constantly monitoring internal and external factors to gain insights about areas for improvement.
Feedback loops are essential here as, without them, processes would be difficult to improve upon, and critical stakeholders would not know whether their needs were met or not.
Finally, continuous improvement looks at ways of maximizing current value within your organization while continuously delivering new functionality through developing new services and decommissioning old ones.
What is ITIL used for?
ITIL’s primary goal is to provide a set of processes and their interactions with each other, which ultimately help you manage your service more efficiently and effectively. It can be applied in any organization that has some kind of offering.
ITIL concentrates on providing good practice guidance and encouraging implementation by showing what others have done.
However, getting certified as an ITIL expert will place you as someone who understands the functionalities required by each process and give you the foundation you need to execute your plans. With the certification, you minimize your margin of error.
Benefits of ITIL implementation
The ITIL framework provides you with a reference model and vocabulary that teams and organizations can use to describe their operation, change management, or incident response. For example, if someone asks you what “SLA” means – you’ll be able to give them the answer without any issues.
Having this standard in place will help your organization avoid confusion regarding sharing information, especially in larger deployments where multiple departments provide different types of services at various stages of the lifecycle.
ITIL also looks at improving customer satisfaction by aligning your service offerings with your customers’ needs, which leads to better relationships between all parties involved.
Finally, ITIL does a great job of reducing costs within an organization thanks to always
looking to work smarter, not harder, and streamline each part of the process without sacrificing service.
The five most significant ITIL concepts are service strategy, service design, service transition, service operation, and continuous improvement. ITIL certification is an essential step in establishing your expert status within the service management industry, as it’s a globally recognized and accepted standard.