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ITIL V3 and ITIL 4 differences and similarities

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ITIL 4: Simpler, Easier to adOpt, Easier to adApt

Since the announcement that ITIL V3 would be updated to ITIL4, I had the opportunity to do quite a bit of training in ITIL 4 and also had the opportunity to use new concepts and practices in my Service Management assignments with customers which resulted in the first feedback.

The ITIL V3 Lifecycle is retired?

I must admit: “abandoning” the V3 lifecycle  came a little bit as a shock! The ITIL V3 Service Strategy, Service Design, Service Transition and Service Operation phases were also the decomposition used for the ITIL V3 books! I hear you think: “what about Continual Service Improvement (CSI) then?”. Well, it stays more or less intact, although not completely. ITIL V3 experts will directly notice some differences (..), but agree that the core idea remains the same.

So, how do we look at service management now if these phases are abondonned in ITIL 4?

The lifecycle comes back in an altered form, but this is not what mostly supports the new ITIL 4. It is mainly the ITIL4 Service Value System that supports this new ITIL 4 update. The Service Value System of ITIL 4 is presented as a big “process” in which demands and opportunities are input and value is output: makes sense and is, of course what Service Management should be about!

In order to deliver value to stakeholders, the Service Value System encompasses Principles, Governance, Practices, a Service Value Chain and of course Continual Improvement: most of these will also be present in many other practices (..). The centre, or maybe I should say “heart” of the Service Value System is the Service Value Chain: quite interesting and a complete “picture”!

Service Value Chain, the heart of the Service Value System in ITIL 4

Those who studied Lean, will recognise the idea of creating or focussing on value by eliminating waste. In the same way ITIL 4 builds Value Streams from a Service Value Chain based on best practices ITIL processes and other, that remain pretty much the same.

Dictsolutions-Service Value Chain the heart of the Service Value System in ITIL 4

Based on AXELOS ITIL® material. Reproduced under licence from AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

D-ICT Solutions & ITIL

D-ICT Solutions has been typecasted for more than 20 years as thé expert on ITIL and PRINCE2. Many training organisations around the world use trainers/ consultants from D-ICT Solutions to provide their ITIL and other courses. D-ICT Solutions is seen as the “manufacturer of trainers and materials”, always in the first parties to certify and can provide you not only practical training but also practical consultants who may help you in management topics as Agile (all variants), Project Management (all sorts), Governance, Quality (ISO20000, ISO27001,..) and of course all (also very specialised) topics within Service Management: NOT as a messias of one Best Practice, but as a experienced user. Take a look at our website or contact us for more information.


Based on AXELOS ITIL® material. Reproduced under licence from AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

Drs Jean-Yves R.A. Depaus: the author, is a Certified ITIL Service Management Expert and ISO/IEC20000 Service Management auditor, with more than 20 years as a trainer, as a management consultant and as a lead auditor.

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