ITIL A Pocket Guide 2011 Edition
ITIL A Pocket Guide 2011 Edition
2 Introduction to the service lifecycle
2.1 Definition of service management
ITIL is presented as " best practice" . Best practice is an approach or method that has been proven in practice. Best practices can be a solid backing for organizations that want to improve their IT services.
The ITIL service lifecycle is based on ITIL's core concept of "service management" and the related concepts "service" and "value". These core terms in service management are explained as follows:
- Service management - A set of specialized organizational capabilities for providing value to customers in the form of services.
- Service - A means of delivering value to customers by facilitating outcomes the customers want to achieve without the ownership of specific costs or risks. Outcomes are possible from the performance of tasks and they are limited by a number of constraints. Services enhance performance and reduce the pressure of constraints. This increases the chances of the desired outcomes being realized.
- Value - Value is the core of the service concept. From the customer's perspective, value consists of two core components: utility and warranty. Utility is what the customer receives, and warranty is how it is provided. The concepts "utility" and "warranty" are described in the Section on service strategy.
2.2 Internal and external customers
Internal customers are people or departments who are part of the same organization as the service provider. These customers may be business units, departments, teams, or any other type of organizational unit.
External customers are people who are not employed by the organization, or organizations that are separate legal entities. The agreements between a service provider and external customers are legally binding contracts. External customers pay with 'real money' (or goods).
Both internal and external customers must be provided with the agreed level of service, with the same levels of customer service.
2.3 Internal and external services
There also are internal and external services. Internal services are delivered to customers in the same organization. External services are delivered to external customers.
2.4 Overview of the service lifecycle
ITIL approaches service management from the lifecycle aspect of a service. The service lifecycle is an organizational model that provides insight into:
- the way service management is structured
- the way the various lifecycle components are linked to each other
- the impact that changes in one component will have on other components and on the entire lifecycle system.
Thus, ITIL focuses on the service lifecycle, and the way service management components are linked. Processes and functions are also discussed in the lifecycle stages.
The service lifecycle consists of five stages. Each volume of the new core ITIL volumes describes one of these stages. The related processes are described in detail in the stage where they have the strongest association.
The five stages (domains of the core books) are:
1. Service strategy - the stage that defines the requirements for a service provider to be able to support the business requirements. It describes the strategy of delivering and managing services to the customer, in the perspective of added value to the customer's business.
2. Service design - the stage where services are designed, and planned for introduction into the service delivery environment. It includes several practices, making sure that servic