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ITIL  reference framework, training and certification and tools have been used by IT Service Management practitioners around 30 years. ITIL 4 is the latest revision of ITIL framework released in 2019.  ITIL 4 has revisited practices in the wider context of customer experience, value streams, and digital transformation, as well as embracing new ways of working, such as Lean, Agile, and DevOps.

The life cycle phases (strategy, design, transition, operation) in ITIL v3 are not used in ITIL 4

ITIL 4 introduces Service Value System (SVS) comprising activities and practices. The ITIL SVS describes how all the components and activities of the organization work together as a system to enable value creation. Each organization’s SVS has interfaces with other organizations, forming an ecosystem that can in turn facilitate value for those organizations, their customers, and other stakeholders.

The six value chain activities are:

  • plan
  • improve
  • engage
  • design and transition
  • obtain/build
  • deliver and support.

These activities represent the steps an organization takes in the creation of value.

A practice is a set of organizational resources designed for performing work or accomplishing an objective. These resources are grouped into the four dimensions of service management.  The dimensions are:

  • organizations and people
  • information and technology
  • partners and suppliers
  • value streams and processes

Please note the following changes in the concepts and terminology between ITIL v3 and ITIL 4.

Life cycle approach Value stream approach
Service Excellence: Provider deliver services to the consumer organisation by providing efficient services Value co-creation: Provider co-creates value by collaborating with the consumer organisation
Life cycle phase contains processes Value Stream activities contain practices. Practices have four dimensions: organizations and peopleinformation and technologypartners and suppliers value streams and processes
One to one relationship between process and life cycle phases (though relationship with other processes are defined) A practice is often grouped under many Value Stream activities
Often interpreted as linear model promotes iterative, agile approach
5 life cycle phases, 26 processes 6  Service Value Stream Activities, 34 practices General Management practices: 14 Service Management: 17 Technical management: 3  

Context diagram

Summary Ratings

Please refer the Rating Criteria

Longevity5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Industry Adoption2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)
Tool support3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)
Training Support5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Assessment support2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Industry adoption: ITIL 4 is released in 2019.

Assessment support: ITIL is not intended for Compliance or Maturity Assessment. There are third party providers who can do assessment for self-improvement. If the organisation needs a standard assessment, they need to consider ISO/IEC 20000 or  CMMI-SVC.

ITIL Service Value System (SVS)

ITIL 4 introduces a Service Value System. The concept is different from Service Life Cycle of ITIL v3. 

Please refer ITIL4 Service Value System description for more details

General management practices Service management practices Technical management practices
Architecture management
Continual improvement
Information security management
Knowledge management
Measurement and reporting
Organizational change management
Portfolio management
Project management
Relationship management
Risk management
Service financial management
Strategy management
Supplier management
Workforce and talent management
Availability management
Business analysis
Capacity and performance management
Change control
Incident management
IT asset management
Monitoring and event management
Problem management
Release management
Service catalogue management
Service configuration management
Service continuity management
Service design
Service desk
Service level management
Service request management
Service validation and testing
Deployment management
Infrastructure and platform management
Software development and management

Technology Tools

ITIL has a very good tool support. Please review Tools category.


There are multiple skills needed to master ITIL. Please refer to individual processes that map to specific SFIA skills.


ITIL is supported by a well established training and certification scheme. The certification is managed by Axelos.





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