What is ITIL V3?

ITIL is a framework consisting of best practices and processes that can be adopted in order to provide IT service management (ITSM). Since its first publication in the 1980s, ITIL has become one of the most widely used framework by organizations to provide ITSM. The framework places importance on improving customer satisfaction by providing effective service delivery while being cost effective.

Over the years, the different versions of ITIL have released in order to stay aligned with changing business requirements. Termed ITIL V3 the third version of ITIL best practices framework was released in 2007. An update to ITIL V3 was made in 2011, because of which, ITIL V3 is also called ITIL 2011 V3. This latest version is more suited for today’s business environment because it includes strategic elements so that the IT service management is more aligned to the business requirements.

ITIL V3 Fundamentals

ITIL V3 Incident management

In today’s business environment, it is imperative to ensure the business operations are conducted seamlessly without any hurdle. In case of an unexpected disruption to a service within the organization, productivity gets compromised. ITIL V3 Incident Management process adopts a set of best practices for effective incident handling and incident resolution to ensure smooth business operations with minimal or no downtime.

ITIL V3 Change management

Change is inevitable in every organization; technologies continually change and have to be replaced, existing solutions/applications have to be upgraded, etc. ITIL V3 provides a set of best practices termed Change Management to handle, prioritize and roll out changes efficiently. By utilizing change management effectively, downtime can be avoided.

ITIL V3 Problem management

The Problem Management team is responsible to perform a Root Cause Analysis (RCA) and to find a permanent fix/workaround for recurring incidents. It is recommended to have an effective communication strategy and to follow a proactive approach to avoid any major incident occurrence. Problem is one or more incidents with an unknown root cause. Problem management maintains a known error database, KEDB whose solution is unknown.

ITIL V3 Framework

The core of the ITIL v3 framework revolves around the ITIL Service Lifecycle and a set of supporting processes and best practices for each stage. The 5 ITIL Stages are:

  • ITIL Service Strategy
  • ITIL Service Design

  • ITIL Service Transition

  • ITIL Service Operation

  • ITIL Continual Service Improvement

ITIL was designed such that the lifecycle stages together form a closed-loop process. This is important because most service management activities aren’t performed when creating services from scratch, they are activities that fix or enhance an existing service. Each stage of the service lifecycle is represented by one of the ITIL volumes and is self-contained while at the same time integrating into the overall ITIL framework.

ITIL Service Strategy Chart ITIL Service Strategy Chart

ITIL Service Strategy

The purpose of Service Strategy is to provide a strategy for the service lifecycle and to ensure that the service is fit for purpose and fit for use. The strategy should be in sync with the organizations business objectives as well as customer needs. Starting from an assessment of customer needs and the marketplace, the Service Strategy lifecycle stage determines which services the IT organization is to offer and what capabilities need to be developed.

Within Service Strategy, Service Portfolio Management helps the organization manage services as a holistic portfolio; demand management is concerned with understanding and influencing customer demand by modeling user profiles and patterns of business activity; Financial Management is concerned with understanding costs and opportunities associated with services in financial terms. Working together, these processes provide the capability for your organization to make informed decisions about what services to provide and how they should be constructed.

ITIL Service Design

The Service Design lifecycle phase is about the design of services and all supporting elements for introduction into the live environment. The scope of the Service Design lifecycle stage includes the design of new services, as well as changes and improvements to existing ones.

The purpose of ITIL Service Design is to ensure that the services being developed fulfill the organizational intent described in service strategy and take into consideration things like supportability, risk management, and business continuity. The more service integration and management issues that can be addressed during service design, the easier service transition becomes.

ITIL Service Transition

The objective of ITIL Service Transition is to build and deploy IT services and ensure that changes to services and service management processes are carried out in a coordinated and safe way.

In this phase of the lifecycle, the design is built, tested and moved into production to enable the business customer to achieve the desired value. This phase addresses managing changes and transition planning to ensure that all stakeholders are prepared for the service release.

ITIL Service Operation

The objective of ITIL Service Operations is to make sure that IT services are delivered effectively and efficiently by fulfilling user requests, resolving service failures, fixing problems and carrying out routine operational tasks

Service operations oversee the daily overall health of the services that are delivered to users and business functions. This includes managing disruptions to service and ensuring restoration after incidents; and determining the root cause of problems. It also includes service desk activities such as handling end-user requests and managing service access permissions.

ITIL Continual Service Improvement

The Continual Service Improvement (CSI) process uses methods from quality management to learn from past successes and failures and improve the overall quality, cost performance and/or usability features to an existing service.

The Continual Service Improvement process aims to continually improve the effectiveness and efficiency of IT processes and services. Companies will often structure their improvement efforts into CSI Initiatives which are prioritized and managed ad projects as compared to other service management tasks that are treated as ongoing operations. The objective of CSI initiatives is to define and execute specific efforts aimed at improving services and processes based on the results of service reviews and process evaluations.

These 5 stages of the ITIL Service Lifecycle work together to support all aspects of service management including the creation of new services and making changes to existing services. Deciding which lifecycle stages are most important for your organization requires a solid understanding of your organization’s culture, strengths, and weaknesses so you can focus on the processes that will have the greatest impact on your company.

What’s the difference- ITIL V2 vs ITIL V3

Essentially, ITIL V3 or ITIL 2011 builds on the operational processes and best practices of ITIL V2 and strives to ensure IT service management is more comprehensive to suit today’s business climate. ITIL V2 was established in the 2000s and was more process focused.

ITIL V3 retains the five lifecycle publications that was was part of the previous versions. However, ITIL V3 has a very critical upgrade- it places great emphasis on aligning ITSM with business goals by focusing on strategic elements. Let us take a closer look at how ITIL V3 differs from the previous version ITIL V2.

ITIL V2 was process oriented. Essentially, it modeled the organization and their ITSM approach   Emphasis is more on a service lifecycle approach to ITSM
Process areas had been grouped in ITIL V2 Clearly defines roles and responsibilities in each process
Had 7 core books Has 5 core books
ITIL V2 had 1 function and 10 processes Includes 4 functions and 25 processes
The processes in ITIL V2 were efficient and cost effective Here, the processes were not only aimed to be efficient and cost effective but also include a strategic emphasis on service approach

ITIL V3 Certification

Over the years, the popularity of ITIL V3 has increased significantly; it has become one of the widely used methodology to ensure a seamless flow of ITSM process. ITIL V3’s wide acceptance globally and its popularity has made ITIL V3 certification one of the most coveted certification in the IT industry. As mentioned above, ITIL V3 is more aligned to the business requirements of today and ITIL V3 certification can be achieved after completing five levels:

Foundation Level

This is the entry level certification that provides the candidate taking the certification with a general background on the fundamental terminology and concepts in ITIL service lifecycle, interaction between the different lifecycle stages and the processes adopted for ITSM.

Practitioner Level

The second stage in the ITIL certification level is the Practitioner level. This level will equip the candidate taking the ITIL certification with capabilities to adopt and sustain ITIL.

Intermediate Level

IT industry recognized qualification level is the Intermediate level where module level focus in provided on IT service management.

Expert Level

Candidates completing the Expert level certification will be able to showcase superior ITIL V3 best practices skills and possess a detailed and in depth knowledge on the entire ITIL V3 process.

Master Level

Candidates vying to complete the Master level in ITIL V3 certification should aptly demonstrate their knowledge on ITIL V3 and provide supporting documentation including successes achieved in practical assignments where ITIL V3 was implemented for IT service management.



ITIL V3 Foundation

ITIL V3 Foundation is the first level of certification that is provided when a candidate beings their quest to Master ITIL V3. Essentially, the ITIL V3 foundation level will provide an overall understanding of ITIL V3 terminology, basic definitions and concepts.
The ITIL V3 foundation level can be taken by candidates who want to:

Format of ITIL V3 Foundation Level Examination

The certification can be taken by anyone who wants to learn about ITIL processes and there is no eligibility criteria. ITIL foundation acts as a prerequisite to take other level exams. This enables individuals to start their career path in IT profession.Please note that there are no prerequisites to take the ITIL V3 foundation level exam. The format of the exam would be as follows.

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