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ITIL Service Desk Guide: Process, Best Practices

31st Jan, 2024
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    ITIL Service Desk Guide: Process, Best Practices

    A popular saying by Bill Gates “The advancement of technology is based on making it fit in so that you don't notice it, so it's part of everyday life" does stand true in today’s scenario. Especially in business, where technology plays an important role in day-to-day operations. However, maintaining that necessary technology can be difficult without a solid foundation of best practices. To establish these best practices and processes, the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) and ITIL processes come in handy.

    The main point of contact for coordinating actions between the end user and the IT service provider is the ITIL service desk. This blog will teach you about numerous service desk procedures, IT service desk software, the significance of service desks, etc. Let us together explore the numerous facets of the ITIL service desk along with Best ITIL Course.

    What is the ITIL Service Desk?

    An essential instrument for information technology service management is a service desk. It provides this facility as the user's only point of contact with the IT organization. Any stakeholder, whether an employee or a customer, could be the user. Their service desk can be internal or externally managed by an IT provider.

    Service desks deal with incidents as well as routine service requests, such as. 

    • A disruption in the service's quality or availability
    • Password changes for users 
    • Adding new users to company systems and providing them with the necessary login information 
    • It could also include configuration and change/release management tasks. 

    What is ITIL?

    Organizations highly value processes and technology to offer top-notch customer service. By following industry standards and best practices, businesses can quickly reach their objectives. This directly affects productivity and raises client happiness.

    However, the key here is only to implement best practices that are necessary and appropriate for your business model. This contributes to excellent service support and delivery, such as the ITSM ticketing system.

    The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) is a collection of best practices designed to help businesses provide IT services to their customers. ITIL is a widely used framework created by the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA), a British government agency; AXELOS Ltd currently owns it.

    ITIL enables organizations to maximize customer value by aligning IT resources with business requirements. It helps organizations reduce costs by measuring, monitoring, and optimizing IT services and service provider performance, and it demonstrates how to standardize service management across their enterprise easily. Even though each organization's IT infrastructure and governance are unique, ITIL's guidelines are flexible enough to help any organization achieve ITIL service desk management system objectives.

    ITIL 4, the latest edition of ITIL released in 2019, introduced 34 management practices to achieve these goals. These practices, formerly known as processes, are collections of organizational resources to achieve a specific goal. They are detailed in procedures that outline who is involved in the processes and how they are carried out. These 34 practices are classified as general management practices, service management practices, and technical management practices. Check out Online ITSM Courses to further boost your IT career!

    ITIL Service Lifecycle Overview

    There are five stages in the ITIL service lifecycle. Each stage has its own set of ITIL service desk processes, and it is critical to understand the purpose of each before implementing it. On the other hand, companies may selectively implement a few necessary processes.

    The five stages of the service lifecycle—Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition, Service Operation, and Continual Service Improvement—are how ITIL V3 (ITIL 2011) organizes the ITIL procedures. The five stages each concentrate on a certain step of the service lifecycle:

    Choosing a customer service strategy is the main goal of the service strategy process. The Service Strategy process decides which services the IT organization will offer and what capabilities need to be created after evaluating client needs and the market. Making the IT organization think, and act strategically is its ultimate goal.

    ITIL Service Desk Stages

    1. Service Strategy

    Service strategy entails a thorough understanding of the needs of the customer and the market. This article advocates for a long-term market-driven approach to IT support. The four "Ps" of strategy - perspective, position, plan, and pattern, are extensively covered by ITIL. They each symbolize a distinct way to approach your service strategy.

    Service strategy includes IT service strategy management, service portfolio management, demand management, financial management for IT services, and customer satisfaction-focused business relationship management.

    itil service desk stages

    2. Service Design

    It is a thorough strategy for developing a support service. The proper service design strategy leads to higher usability and client satisfaction. Some ITIL service design procedures include service level agreements, service catalog management, availability management, and IT service continuity management.

    3. Service Transition

    This stage ensures that changes in the service lifecycle are handled with the least risk and impact, resulting in little or no downtime. Change management, release management, configuration management database, and knowledge management are some of the processes covered here. 

    4. Service Operation

    ITIL service operation ensures a consistent level of service in day-to-day business operations. During this stage, actual service delivery and consumption take place. This has a direct impact on end-user productivity. Examples of typical processes include incident management, request fulfillment, and problem management. 

    5. Continual Service Improvement

    CSI aims for continuous process review and improvement throughout the service lifecycle. This applies to all stages of service delivery, including strategy, design, transition, and operation. At this stage, metrics are defined, and performance is reviewed, allowing businesses to revisit existing processes.

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    What are the ITIL Processes?

    ITIL processes define a set of detailed practices for IT service management (ITSM) that align IT services with business needs: 

    • When Should the ITIL Process be Implemented?

    There is no single answer as to when ITIL Processes should be implemented. They vary across situations. It's critical to assess and implement ITIL standards in a way that complements its business's distinct characteristics and constraints. When used effectively, the results might include cost reduction through resource optimization, enhanced customer happiness and service delivery, and better alignment between IT and business units.

    Organizations are free to embrace as much of the ITIL framework as they find useful because ITIL is a collection of best practices rather than a set standard. However, a business will see larger benefits the more ITIL-compliant its procedures are.

    • ITIL Service Desk Framework

    One essential component of service operation is the service desk. It offers all IT users a solitary, central point of contact. Service desk staff carry out the incident management and request fulfillment operations to swiftly return users to normal service. Restoring normal service may entail resolving a technical issue, attending to a service request, or responding to a question - whatever is required to allow users to get back to work. The service desk provides an interface to various service operation processes and activities, which also handles and records customer contacts. According to ITIL 2011, a service desk has the following specific duties: 

    1. Logging, classifying and ranking every call. 
    2. Performing initial research and problem diagnosis 
    3. Whenever feasible and resolving complaints or service requests as soon as they are received. 
    4. Incidents and service requests that are not resolved within the predetermined time frame are escalated.  
    5. Putting an end to completed requests, incidents, and other calls keeping users aware of developments, upcoming changes, scheduled outages, and other similar announcements.

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    What are the Types of Service Desk in ITIL?

    A service desk can be implemented in a variety of ways. Each sort of ITIL services desk structure has its own set of potential applications and restrictions. Given below are a few service desk applications: 

    1. Centralized Service Desk 

    An interaction hub for query resolution is essentially what a centralized service desk is. 

    This IT service desk maintains everything in one place and guarantees that all queries are resolved through a single point of contact. It is very useful in the following domains: 

    • Settlement of tickets quickly.  
    • Simple ticket management, regardless of volume.  
    • Consolidation of local service desks under centralized control 

    2. Local Service Desk

    As the name implies, a local service desk is situated on or very close to a business's premises. It mostly meets the needs of small and medium-sized businesses in terms of customer service. The best uses for this kind of service desk are: 

    • taking care of a small number of support tickets 
    • resolving challenges at the business location 
    • Easy ticket resolution, but only for a small number of tickets 

    3. Virtual Service Desk

    The most common service desk utilized by businesses nowadays is the virtual service desk. A virtual service desk essentially relies on internet connectivity. You may effectively use your service desk for your business from any device, no matter where it is deployed or located. An online service desk guarantee: 

    • No matter where you are, you can easily resolve tickets. 
    • Simple geographic location-based ticket organization and classification 
    • Effective tracking of agent performance


    It is clear why prestigious organizations from all around the world have adopted ITIL. ITIL benefits include increased communication, lower costs, better customer service, and fewer service disruptions, to mention a few. These are just a few reasons why ITIL is one of the most trusted and widely used service management frameworks.

    Finding a course that provides you with this knowledge can be a challenge. With KnowledgeHut Best ITIL Course, learn how to set up, manage and run an ITIL service Desk Guide in a fun way. The best part is that it is affordable!

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1What is the main function of the service desk?

    The customer and IT teams communicate through the service desk. 

    2What are the types of service desks?

    There are three types of service desks, i.e., Centralized Service Desk, Local Service Desk, and Virtual Service desk.   

    3Is the service desk a technical job?

    Yes, the service desk is a technical job; however, one cannot ignore the role of soft skills.  

    4What is the difference between a helpdesk and a service desk?

    A service desk is available to aid with break-fix as well as service requests (inquiries for new services) and information requests (such as "how do I do something?"). A help desk is thought to be focused on break-fix ( incident management).


    Manikandan Mohanakrishnan


    Manikandan Mohanakrishnan is a highly skilled corporate trainer, consultant, and content developer with expertise in a wide range of areas including ITIL 4, PRINCE2, Agile/Scrum, PMP, DevOps, and soft skills. With a passion for delivering exceptional training experiences, Manikandan offers a comprehensive suite of training services covering service management, project management, business simulations, and more. With over 20+ years of experience, he has successfully facilitated numerous programs, including business communications, emotional intelligence, team building, and organizational change management. Manikandan's dedication to empowering individuals and organizations shines through his motivational talks and impactful training sessions.

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