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ITIL: what is it and how to start using it?

It is not enough to be aware that Information Technology (IT) is a strategic area for companies to achieve more expressive performance. It is also essential to adopt good management practices for services related to this segment to be within or above expectations. This scenario strengthens the need to bet on the ITIL methodology.

Currently, it is one of the most requested by IT managers, because it serves as a basis on how to manage the tasks of a team and keep the activities being performed in an exemplary way.

In this article, we are going to cover several points about this method of managing IT services, in order for you to adopt it in your business efficiently. Check out!

O que é ITIL

What is the best answer about what is ITIL?

Certainly, a good way to define this IT management methodology is to say that it is a library with the best practices for managing Information Technology services.

It is also common to call ITIL a library, that is, a set of works in which the most successful actions around the world on IT management are documented, after decades of knowledge acquisition.

It is worth noting that the meaning of the acronym ITIL is: Information Technology Infrastructure Library. In Portuguese, it means Information Technology Infrastructure Library.

However, ITIL does not specifically refer to IT infrastructure. The focus is a broad approach to technological management, which also covers activities related to software development.

With the emergence of an information base related to the IT Governance and the management of technological services, this methodology started to gather a wider range of knowledge, an essential aspect to add value to the work of Information Technology managers.

Understand the ITIL V3 concept

To implement this ITIL method of IT management, it is recommended to know the modalities that can be implemented in a company. One of them is ITIL V3, which was adopted from 2011.

In it, the life cycle of activities is divided into five principles (service, processes, functions, measures and performance. For you to fully assimilate this, we will address the most relevant stages in the adoption of ITIL V3. Follow along!


The goal is to establish the strategy for a company to offer digital services to customers and keep activities running smoothly. For this, there is also a focus on implementing a culture focused on actions aimed at the most impactful results.  


This is the time when the service strategy must be transformed into concrete activities. This is done through the launch of new services or the improvement of those already offered.


The intention is to gather all the assets of a service to test and integrate them. This work aims to verify the quality of a new service so that it is launched according to the best market practices.


This stage prioritizes the adoption of initiatives that enable the provision of responsive services. For this to be achieved, it is essential to structure incident management and the call center, which helps a company to be more dynamic in maintaining activities.

continuous improvement

The works are aimed at expanding the effectiveness and efficiency of IT processes and activities in a corporation. This stage aims to make the practices of the other phases look for alternatives to continually improve.

Get to know ITIL 4

It consists of the most updated version of the ITIL methodology, being released in February 2019. It is worth mentioning that there were profound changes in the method's architecture.

With the intention of exposing this more clearly, we are going to show you how ITIL 4 is composed. Therefore, it is important to read this content very carefully!

organizations and people

As much as IT services involve software and hardware, it is impossible to ignore the relevance of customers (internal or external), suppliers and the Information Technology team.

Therefore, it is very important to have a focus on how the management of services can provide a good experience for stakeholders from the continuous improvement of the work.

Information and Technology

The activities are aimed at managing the IT sector to promote greater availability of digital systems and services, with a focus on information security. 

partners and suppliers

To overcome the challenges of digital transformation, the Information Technology area needs partnerships and high-level suppliers. This factor favors the hiring of consultants, equipment, software houses and even a software factory.

Value streams and processes

At this stage, the focus is on IT processes. Thus, the possibilities of improving them are greater, taking into account the needs of customers. This posture shows a more proactive behavior in the face of market changes.

It is valid to say that these four stages of ITIL 4 can suffer economic, environmental, legal, political and technological influences. In addition, this new version is characterized by a greater focus on stakeholders rather than the structuring of the service itself.

Evaluate how to implement this methodology

In addition to the focus on continuous improvement of processes and services, it is necessary to have a close eye on employees for ITIL to become a real practice in the daily life of a company.

From the knowledge of the most used versions of the method, it is possible to think about the necessary steps for the implementation. However, there must be a priority in the qualification of the team for good IT practices to be fully implemented.

This scenario makes companies focus on encouraging employees to obtain the ITIL Foundation, certification necessary to follow the best Information Technology management procedures.

Currently, the ITIL 4 Foundation certification is a gateway to adopting the most up-to-date version of the ITIL framework. This is because it allows an understanding of how IT management involves the creation, delivery and continuous evolution of services.

For IT professionals, this certification helps to understand the ITIL structure and how it can be useful in improving the administration of Information Technology services.

As a company has properly qualified professionals, it will be faster and simpler to implement the ITIL methodology in the short term.

See some advantages of adopting ITIL in your company 

There are several benefits to employing a work method focused on the continuous improvement of IT services. And understanding this will undoubtedly help you understand how investing in an advanced management methodology can make a difference.

A significant advantage of ITIL involves clarity and speed in prioritizing demands. When executing this correctly, the team will have a direction of what needs to be done in a more agile way. This contributes to increased productivity and focus on results. 

With a better structured team, it is also feasible to reduce IT costs and risks. If good practices for monitoring and preventing cyber attacks are adopted, a company will consequently have less maintenance expenses. In addition, it will minimize the probabilities of losses with unforeseen interruptions in services.

Another outstanding benefit of the ITIL methodology is to make the IT sector more aligned with the business strategy. This is because the Information Technology team will act in accordance with the main objectives of the organization, which is crucial for the permanent evolution of the services.

There are many factors that justify an investment in ITIL. After all, it is necessary to ensure that the management of IT activities is within institutional perspectives and needs.


Responding to growing dependence on IT, the UK Government's Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) in the 1980s developed a set of recommendations. It recognized that without standards, government agencies and private sector contracts began to independently create their own IT management practices.

The IT Infrastructure Library originated as a collection of books, each covering a specific practice within IT service management. ITIL was built around a process model-based view of controlling and managing operations often credited to W. Edwards Deming and his PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act) cycle.

After initial publication in 1989-96, the number of books quickly grew within version 1 of ITIL to over 30 volumes.

In 2000/2001, to make ITIL more accessible (and accessible), ITIL Version 2 consolidated the publications into nine logical “sets” that grouped related process guidelines to match different aspects of managing IT, applications, and services.

The Service Management suites (Service Support and Service Delivery) were by far the most widely used, disseminated and understood of the ITIL Version 2 publications.

  • In April 2001, CCTA was merged into the OGC, a UK Treasury office. 
  • In 2006, the ITIL Version 2 glossary was published.
  • May 2007, this organization issued ITIL version 3 (also known as the ITIL Refresh Project), comprising 26 processes and functions, now grouped into just 5 volumes, organized around the concept of a service lifecycle framework. ITIL Version 3 is now known as ITIL 2007 Edition.
  • In 2009, the OGC officially announced that ITIL Version 2 certification would be withdrawn and launched an important consultation on how to proceed. 
  • In July 2011, the 2011 edition of ITIL was published, providing an update to the version published in 2007. The OGC is no longer listed as the owner of ITIL, following consolidation of the OGC into the Cabinet.

The 4th edition of ITIL starts with the book ITIL Foundation, released on February 18, 2019.

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