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An Introduction to the ITIL® Service Lifecycle

The introduction of the Service Lifecycle was a transformational time for IT Service Management (ITSM). ITIL® best practices moved from a segregated process-driven view into a more holistic, lifecycle-oriented approach.  This article will provide a brief overview of the 5 stages of the ITIL Service Lifecycle.

Service Lifecycle Stages:

Service Strategy

The Service Strategy phase of the Service Lifecycle is focused on developing strategies and plans to create value for the business through the delivery of services. The objective of this phase is to build a vision and clearly define expected outcomes.

Service Design

The Service Design phase of the Service Lifecycle is where the organization takes what was built in the Service Strategy phase and creates a set of project plans. The deliverables from this stage include high level and detailed process documentation, tool automation requirements, a project transition plan, project guidance and an organizational adoption plan.

Service Transition

The Service Transition phase requires a high level of collaboration across IT and the business. During this phase, the design becomes a reality. Key activities of this phase include validation and testing, preparing the organization for the new or changed service, defining and testing the implementation plan through pilots, and completing the Transition plan with the organizational rollout.

Service Operation

Now is when all the planning and hard work comes to fruition. At this point, it is vital that the governance and controls are in place to ensure management and staff move from the old behaviors and ways of doing things to the new behaviors and practices.

Continual Service Improvement

No project or implementation reaches perfection “out of the box.” It is important and critical to monitor process or service performance, compare that performance to established standards and, if there is a significant deviation from actual to desired, make the necessary decisions to improve the process or service performance.

Completing a cycle of the ITIL Service Lifecycle does not mean that your program is complete. A critical piece to the Service Lifecycle is that it is an iterative process that is continually being reevaluated and updated. The IT organization must continually evolve to meet the changing needs of the business.

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About this author:

Jon Francum

Jon is the Director of Training at Ashford Global IT.

One response to “An Introduction to the ITIL® Service Lifecycle”

  1. […] people are content to take these schemas at face value, those who apply and innovate new methods based on the Service Lifecycle find it much easier to advance their careers. Here are a few tips to keep in […]

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