Published On: 1 July 2022By Categories: Tags: 4.5 min read

What is ITIL 4 and what are the benefits?

The ITIL 4 Framework for Service Management is the de-facto best practice for service management. Ever since the ITIL framework was created, it has grown rapidly in adoption. Today, it is adopted and adapted my almost every large organization in the world.

ITIL 4 is a framework that explains how service providers can create a structured service offering to deliver value to their customers. Since most IT organizations deliver dozens, if not hundreds of different services, the management of all these services can become quite complex quite quickly. How to deal with different vendors? How do we define a ‘good’ service? And how can an organization ensure that it has the right knowledge, skills, and resources to deliver quality services consistently?

The ITIL 4 framework provides answers to these questions. Based on almost 40 years of experience, the framework details how some of the leading organizations in the world have structured their service management operations. ITIL 4 provides recommendations and a whole set of processes (in ITIL 4 they are called ITIL Practices), that organizations can adopt and adapt to their preference.

ITIL 4 as a Toolbox

The fact that ITIL 4 is a best practice, makes it easy to embrace and easy to adopt. The whole set of ITIL practices can be seen as a toolbox. In the latest ITIL 4 framework, there are 34 different practices, each of which that provides guidance for specific situations. There is best practice guidance on Incident Management, Problem Management, Change Management, and many other common service management topics.

Just like a car mechanic does not need all his tools for every car that needs to be fixed, IT service delivery organizations do not need all the ITIL practices to function properly. Most service provides pick and choose a selection of ITIL Practices (frequently 10 to 15 of the most common practices) and adopt these practices in their organization.

The fact that the ITIL 4 Framework is flexible is the key to its success and adoption. Even though the practices in the core guidance are standardizes, every organization is free to make changes to the templates and customize them to fit their individual needs. Whereas the ITIL 4 framework provides a common reference to every organization, it will still be tailored to match individual needs of organization.

Upskill to the latest version of ITIL

In 2019, the ITIL 4 framework was introduced as a replacement for ITIL V3. The new framework includes many strong improvements, including more focus on the way that DevOps, SRE and Agile are changing a the traditional ‘service operation’ function. Ever since 2019, most organizations have started the transition towards the new framework. 2022 saw an acceleration of this trend, driven by the fact that AXELOS, owner of the ITIL 4 framework, has decided to phase out the ITIL V3 certification scheme (you can no longer take an ITIL V3 exam).

As the transition to ITIL 4 is taking place in most organization, knowing about the ITIL 4 framework and corresponding best practices is not only a good idea, but gives you an advantage. There is a vast and steady demand for service management professionals, and the ITIL 4 Foundation course will provide you with essential knowledge to operate in a modern ITSM environment. Knowing how ITIL fits within the wider IT organization, and where its benefits and limitations are, will provide you with a broader perspective on the value of creating and delivering world-class services.

Learn about integration with other best practice frameworks

As second main benefit of the new ITIL 4 Framework is that it integrates with other standards and best practices. Most notably, ITIL 4 now embraces and integrates with Agile approaches and Lean management process optimization. New frameworks and movement, such as DevOps, DevSecOps, SIAM and SRE now also have a place within the framework.

By embracing these different frameworks, ITIL 4 has become a stronger framework. Instead of an isolationist approach, it is now focused on embracing other leading methodologies. The ITIL 4 Foundation course will enable you to learn about the bigger picture and place these different framework and methodologies into the right context.

Take the first step towards ITIL MP or ITIL SL

Finally, the ITIL 4 Foundation course is the steppingstone for any IT professional that aims to make a career in the service management domain. The reason the introduction module of the ITIL 4 framework is called ‘ITIL 4 Foundation’ is because it provides the foundational concepts and knowledge to service management. This certification is therefore also the official prerequisite for service management professional who aim to get certified at higher levels.

The ITIL 4 Certification Scheme | The ITIL 4 Framework

In the new ITIL 4 certification scheme, there are two distinct designations: the ITIL Managing Professional (ITIL MP) and the ITIL Strategic Leader (ITIL SL). For both these qualifications, the ITIL 4 Foundation certificate functions as a prerequisite. The requirements for both qualifications are as follows:

ITIL Managing Professional

ITIL Managing Professional

As you can see from the ITIL 4 certification scheme, the ITIL 4 Foundation course is the first step to take, no matter in which direction you aim to specialize. Taking part in his certification will therefore lay the groundwork for any further specialization in service management.

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