ITIL, an acronym for Information Technology Infrastructure Library, is an extensively accepted approach to IT service management (ITSM), which focuses on aligning IT services with business needs. It directs the professionals and the organisations in using IT as a tool that facilitates business growth and transformation. The ITIL portrays various procedures, tasks, processes, checklists that are not specified by an organisation. But an organisation can apply them to establish integration with the organisation’s strategy and by delivering a value. It facilitates building a baseline for an organisation for planning, implementation, and measurement. The ITIL framework is outlined to standardise the IT services in terms of selection, planning, support, and delivery to business needs. The ITIL transforms ‘IT’ into a business-service partner rather than just a back-end support by achieving its goal to improve efficiency. The ITIL guidelines regulate the IT actions and budget according to the business needs and also enable changes to them even if there is a shift or change in the business. Here’re important things to know about ITIL Foundation
ITIL originated in the 1980s, with the dissolution of data centres and more geographical and diverse architectures gaining importance. The Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) of the UK government developed a set of recommendations after recognising that the private sectors and government agencies have started to implement their own IT-management practices. The IT Infrastructure Library encompasses a framework of five core publications or a collection of books, each of which covers a specific practice in the IT service management. The essential books comprising ITIL version 3 (V3) are as follows:
Service Strategy: This book looks at the overall business aims and expectations, and provides advice and prioritisation of service-provider investments.
Service Design: Service Design provides good advice on the design of IT processes, services, and other aspects of the service management. Starting with a set of new or alternated business needs, it ends with a solution that is designed to meet the recorded needs of the business.
Service Transition: Service Transition relates to the delivery of services needed by a business for its operational use. It focuses on management of change, risk, and quality assurance during the deployment of service designs.
Service Operation: Service Operation enables the delivery of negotiated levels of service to the customers and end users. Also, the problems are monitored, and a balance is restored in between service reliability and costs.
Continual Service Improvement: Continual Service Improvement (CSI) looks for ways to improve the overall process and service provision. It facilitates alignment and realignment of IT services to accommodate the changing business needs.
Benefits of ITIL in Management Practices
Many prominent organisations are adopting and implementing the ITIL practices, as ITIL has become a leading framework of best service-management practices. Following are the benefits:
1. ITIL has gained recognition worldwide
The common terms and concepts defined in ITIL form a set of practices that develop gradually to meet the market needs in a cycle of continual improvement. All the organisations—small or large, private or public, centralised or decentralised—can be benefitted from ITIL. ITIL can be adapted for utilisation and implementation in all businesses and organisations, regardless of size or scope. ITIL is scalable and flexible, so organisations, no matter big or small can implement parts of ITIL-delivering organisational benefits in various stages.
2. ITIL provides customer satisfaction
ITIL provides a base for quality IT Service Management. The services offered by ITIL are based on efficient principles and adequately fulfils the business requirements. ITIL has been programmed emphasise focus on customer needs and user experience instead of focusing on technology issues. ITIL comprises of a consistent set of processes, highlighting the potential weakness that occurred in the previous operations, and suggests proactive improvements. ITIL allows better access to services for users and speedy responses to customer enquiries and complaints. This helps improve customer satisfaction and build a better relationship with the customer.
3. ITIL provides a reliable quality of service
ITIL provides better management and control over the IT system infrastructure and management. The adoption of ITIL standards facilitates the service providers to deliver services regularly and effectively. Better identification of the areas of improvement and a proactive approach to service provision makes ITIL a reliable and best practice in the IT Service Management.
4. ITIL enables development of delivery of service
ITIL enhances efficiency of services for the trading partners. The processes provided by ITIL help the service providers work with their clients and suppliers which enables them to make wise decisions on cost optimisation, investment opportunities, risk management, and various other priorities.
5. ITIL provides a decisive advantage by creation of value
ITIL has improved the service quality by shortening the resolution time, providing better management control and implementing permanent solutions to acknowledge problems. By managing the customer and service portfolios, ITIL enables growth and prosperous business transformation that increases an organisations’ competitive advantage. Some of the benefits include:
• Quantifies and clearly demonstrates the true value of the services
• Minimizes service disruption
• Obtains value for money from the service providers
• Benchmarks the services and maximizes the returns on investment
• Forecasts, responds, and influences the demands of services in a cost-effective way
• Ensures that the business and customers remain unaffected by the unexpected service failures