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Introduction to ITIL

ITIL offers a common and widely accepted approach to managing business and IT services. ITIL best practices cover a service lifecycle in five core publications: Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition, Service Operation and Continual Service Improvement.

ITIL provides access to world-class service management expertise, a comprehensive qualifications scheme, together with accredited training and consultancy.

Challenges in Service Operation

A key challenge in service operation is to deliver services day-day whilst responding effectively and efficiently in a way that adds value for customers and users. Operational activities need to be properly conducted, controlled and managed. 

Operations staff need processes and support tools to allow them to have an overall view of service operation and delivery to be able to detect any threats or failures to service quality or security. One challenge is to provide an overall view of an end to end service that includes the business perspective and technical perspective, rather than just the separate components or ‘silos’.

Many services are provided by one or more internal or external suppliers. A significant challenge is to understand and manage the end-to-end service with components that are provided externally as well as managing process workflows across organizations.

Service providers also need to adapt and respond effectively to changes in demand needs to customers and users as demand for services changes.

Benefits of adopting ITIL for Service Operation

Selecting and adopting the best practices in the Service Operation publication will help an organization to deliver significant benefits such as:

  • Reduce unplanned resource and costs through better handling of service outages and identification of their root causes
  • Enable the business and customers to add value from the services they are receiving by reducing downtime
  • Enabling continual improvement and better investment decision making by providing operational results and data for decision support
  • Enable users to improve their productivity or the quality of business services and products by providing quick and effective access to standard services
  • Meet the objectives of the organization’s security policy by ensuring that IT services will only be accessed by those authorized to use them.

ITIL Service Operation publication

The ITIL service operation publication covers the following

  • Management of the delivery and support of services at agreed service levels to ensure value for the customer and users
  • Activities required to deliver and support the services including the supporting processes, technology and people
  • Maintaining stability whilst also responding to changes in business needs and technology.

About the Author

Shirley Lacy is Managing Director of ConnectSphere. ConnectSphere provides consulting and professional development services to help organizations to apply ITIL service management best practices in order to deliver value for customers. Shirley is an ITIL expert and project mentor tor the ITIL V3 Update project.See Shirley's bio.

If you want to find out more about applying ITIL best practices, contact ConnectSphere and see our services. For more information on managing verndors across the service supply chain see our multi-vendor services.

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