ITIL v3 Service Operation: FAQs on Book 4

ITIL expert Don Cox answers user questions about ITIL Core Practice Book 4: Service Operation.

The IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) version 3 Service Operation book offers guidance on how your organization can successfully manage a service through its production lifecycle. Following a live expert webcast on SearchCIO.com, Don Cox answered the following user questions related to the book:

More on ITIL v3 Book 4
ITIL v3 Core Practice Book 4: Service Operation -- Expert Webcast

ITIL v3 Core Practice Book 4: Service Operation -- Expert Podcast
What are some of the concepts introduced in ITIL v3 Service Operation?
Cox: There are several new processes and functions introduced in ITIL v3 Service Operation, as well as a few conceptual guidances and principles. One area given attention is the issue of balancing between conflicting motives in operations: internal IT view vs. external business view; stability vs. responsiveness; quality of service vs. cost of service; and reactive vs. proactive. These conflicts are given special attention, as they can make or break IT operations.

What has happened to many of the service management processes of ITIL v2?
Cox: In ITIL v3, most of the service management processes from ITIL v2 remain the same, except that they have been enhanced to be more aware of the service lifecycle. As a consequence, they have been reorganized into the different service lifecycle phases. A few processes were also added, and new functions were created to handle activities that have been seen to require a separate focused group of people.

How are service requests handled in ITIL v3, as compared with ITIL v2?
Cox: In ITIL v3, service requests are handled by a new, independent process called Request Fulfillment. In ITIL v2, all service requests were handled as part of Incident Management, and in that scenario, these service requests would either get badly delayed due to other more important incidents, or unnecessarily passed through too many checks and balances that were more appropriate for handling problems and outages. With the Request Fulfillment process, service requests are handled similar to incidents, but with their own records as well as prioritization and fulfillment approach.
Ref: ITIL Service Operation book, 2.4.5

Is building of an application under the Application Management function?
Cox: No, it's not. Application Management is responsible for managing applications throughout their lifecycle, and is focused on managing and supporting operational applications. It may also help in the design, testing and improvement of applications that are part of IT services, providing inputs related to improving their manageability, but is not intended to take over the job of the application development teams.

Don Cox is CTO at Pultorak & Associates Ltd. in Seattle.

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