Lionel Grealou Digital 2 minutes

What is ITIL

Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) provides a framework for organizing service management in an IT environment and incorporates processes such as configuration, change, capacity and release management.

ITIL standards are published by the UK Office of Government Commerce (OOGC) and provide a holistic view of delivering and managing services. ITIL is referred to when it comes to (new) orientation, structuring, optimization and efficiency increase in IT organizations, providing:

  • A process framework including IT rules and standards, such as definitions, roles, processes and procedures to achieve savings potentials or cost effective and targeted further developments.
  • An operational platform to manage support services and business excellence with controlled actions and operation, clear roles, responsibilities and interfaces, structured processes, standardization and potential automation, transparency, quality increase, representation of significance, image and justification, avoidance of unnecessary activities, and continuous improvement of services.

ITIL informs how IT departments define, build and operate services, especially relating to operations support with processes and tool covering: incident management, service request management, dashboards and analyticsasset and configuration management, and capacity management

What is ITSM

Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) is the framework for delivering technology within a business. ITSM refers to the organizational implementation of a management model used to design, implement and manage quality services for business customers. It is a library of process standards that guide the delivery and support of IT services in terms of service strategy, design, transition, operation, and continuous service improvement.

ITSM is to align to:

  • IT strategy – an organization that is required to support and deliver on the IT Strategy
  • Demand management – a very large part of ITSM is understanding what customers/ business users need and translate those requirements into cost effective and value driven services.
  • Governance – managing a portfolio of services, managing customer expectations and having the mechanisms to make effective and timely decisions.
  • Sourcing – staying abreast of where the industry is going and delivering the portfolio of services in the most cost effective and value driven manner, regardless of the source.
  • Vendor management – managing multiple vendors to deliver the products and services in a manner that allows IT to meet their customer satisfaction.

ITSM is a foundation for delivering IT and provides a basis for better management controls, improved operational efficiencies, value-based services and integrates well with service providers. It enhances the relationship between IT organizations’ internal and external service providers while increasing the linkages across functions and improving service levels.

What is the difference between ITIL and ITSM

ITIL and ITSM together make up the IT services eco-system that create the capability to deliver and manage a portfolio of quality services. While often interchanged with ITIL, the two are different.  ITSM is the organizational function, while ITIL is the process function.

What are your thoughts?

This post was originally published on LinkedIn on 7 December 2015.

About the Author

Lionel Grealou


Lionel Grealou, a.k.a. Lio, helps original equipment manufacturers transform, develop, and implement their digital transformation strategies—driving organizational change, data continuity and process improvement, managing the lifecycle of things across enterprise platforms, from PDM to PLM, ERP, MES, PIM, CRM, or BIM. Beyond consulting roles, Lio held leadership positions across industries, with both established OEMs and start-ups, covering the extended innovation lifecycle scope, from research and development, to engineering, discrete and process manufacturing, procurement, finance, supply chain, operations, program management, quality, compliance, marketing, etc.

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