Service Design in ITIL®

 Feb 12, 2016

Service Design is the ITIL® lifecycle stage that logically happens after the Strategy phase and before Transition. During the Design phase, we create new services align them with our strategic objects and prepare them for operation.

ITIL Service Design

Why Design?

Why shall we bother with the design process? Why not just push our new service to operations? That would seem to be an excellent idea as operations know what the customer needs and requires after all. This is how it was done in the early years of IT Service Management and is now considered to be bad practice, ITIL® is all about good practice.

What is required is a set of skills, knowledge and processes that will assist us in creating efficient, effective services aligned with the big picture.

In order to do that, Service Design must consider the effective and efficient use of the four Ps:

  • People – human resources involved
  • Processes – what and how
  • Products – services, technology and tools
  • Partners – suppliers, manufacturers and vendors

ITIL Service Design

Design processes

There are eight we look at in design. Once we have made our definitions in strategy we look to evolving them in design and here is what we look at:-

















  • Design Coordination – This is new to the ITIL® 2011. It is main area of controlling the communication and control during the design phase. It looks after all design components, ensuring consistency of the design of services. These would be aligned with strategy and in preparation for testing and deployment in transition.
  • Service Portfolio Management – This is the management of services that are in the pipeline, services that are currently available to the users and those service that are going to be retired. It has accurate information to the business about services, how and where they are being used and which business processes they support.
  • Service Level Management (SLM) – This is an important design process. This where service level agreements, operation level agreements, underpinning agreements are negotiated to ensure services are delivered as agreed with the business.
  • Availability Management – This is the process to ensure that the services delivered are available enough as per the agreements devised in service level management in a cost effective and timely manner.
  • Capacity Management – This ensures the IT infrastructure and services meet the requirements agreed in service level management. It also spans through all of the ITIL® lifecycles.
  • IT Service Continuity Management – This is to ensure that the business can continue in the event of a disaster. This involves a business impact analysis to understand the implications of a major impact event.
  • Information Security Management (ISM) – This is to ensure that the information security policy is aligned with business security.
  • Supplier Management – This ensures getting value for money from suppliers, works in conjunction with service level management to negotiate the best underpinning agreements.


Designing services according to design principles within this module, will enable the organisation to create business/customer focused, efficient and cost-effective services.

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About the Author:

Steve Wiggins  

Steve is a highly experienced technical trainer with over 10 years of specialisation in Software Application Development, Project Management, VBA Solutions and Desktop Applications training. His practical experience in .NET programming, advanced solution development and project management enables him to train clients at all levels of seniority and experience. Steve also currently manages the IT infrastructure for New Horizons of Brisbane, providing him with daily hands-on experience with SCCM, Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8.

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