ITIL v3 Foundation Certification Notes: Service Design

itil v3 foundation notes: service design

[ITIL® v3 Foundation Notes] The Service Design lifecycle stage is an important area as the design is often accountable for the success or failure of the services. The Service Design stage begins with customer requests and ends in service design ready for the transition phase. Below are the important concepts and facts for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification.

Purpose, Objectives and Scope of Service Design

  • Service Design is involved in both planning new services and changing existing services to ensure service strategy are fulfilled.
  • A service needs to provide utility and warranty (level of service, including security, service continuity, capacity, etc.) in order to deliver value. Poor design means the service cannot deliver both utility and warranty.
  • Service Design requires planning (e.g. risk management) to be successful.
  • Good design aligns the outcome to business objectives with a lower total cost of ownership of the service and smooth service transition and operation. It also allows continual improvement of service by gathering useful metrics. The processes are also designed to be efficient and effective.

Purpose of Service Design

  • The purpose of Service Design is to deliver a new service / service amendment that can deliver the strategic outcome required, the design of both the services and the service management processes need to be included.
  • Need to ensure the service will run within budget and meet/exceed customer requirements.

Objectives of Service Design

  • Deliver a service that would required little improvement later on by learning from lessons learned of previous projects.

Scope of Service Design

  • Consider not only the current requirements but also future needs (e.g. take advantage of technical advancements, can be easily adapted to future needs)
  • Describes how to identify requirements (functional and service level) and ensure the delivery of such requirements
  • Processes include:
    • Design coordination
    • Service catalog management
    • Service level management
    • Availability management
    • Capacity management
    • IT service continuity management
    • Information security management
    • Supplier management
  • Note: these processes may be involved in more than one phase in the lifecycle

Key Output of Service Design – Service Design Package

  • A service design package consists of one or more documents that describe all aspects of the service throughout its lifecycle, for use in transition (as requirements for testing) and operation of the service.
  • Documents of a service design package may include:
    • Original agreed business requirements for the service  (but not the organizational business strategy)
    • How the service will be used
    • Key contacts and stakeholders
    • Functional requirements
    • Management requirements
    • Service level requirements
    • Technical design of the new or changed service including hardware, software, networks, environments, data, applications, technology, tools, and documentation
    • Sourcing strategy
    • New or changed processes required to support the service
    • Organizational readiness assessment – need for training and supplies
    • Service lifecycle plan, including the timescales and phasing, for the transition, operation, and subsequent improvement of the new service
    • Service program – an overall plan of the lifecycle of the service
    • Service transition plan
    • Service operational acceptance plan
    • Service acceptance criteria (SAC)
  • Another output is service solution

Service Composition

Services are composed of the following elements (utility, warranty, resources and capabilities):

  • the business processes involved
  • utility requirements as well as governance / reporting requirements
  • service level agreement / supporting requirements
  • technical components and how they are linked as well as environmental requirements
  • the applications to provide functional requirements as well as the data required
  • dependencies with other services
  • service management processes

Key Elements of Service Design

  • People
  • Processes
  • Products
  • Partners


  • the availability and capability of the people using or supporting the service
  • training needs analysis and budgeting for training are to be considered


  • new service may require additional processes (e.g. authorization / procurement services)
  • all processes should be documented with the interfaces in between
  • identify changes required to existing services


  • the service itself plus the technology and tools used in design or support


  • specialist suppliers / vendors which are managed through supplier management process

Major Aspects of Service Design

  • Service solutions
  • Tools and systems for management information
  • Architectures
  • Measurement systems
  • Processes

Service Solutions

  • the functionality offered by the service itself
  • deliver the solution within the technical and financial constraints, and corporate rules
  • the approach must be structured but flexible enough to accommodate future changes

Tools and Systems for Management Information

  • these are used to support and automate processes (e..g quality management system, information security system)
  • ensure the service will integrate with existing management tools and systems


  • compatible with existing architectural platform and technical standards
  • [definition] Architecture is defined as the fundamental organization of a system, embodied in its components, their relationships to each other and to the environment, and the principles guiding its design and evolution.

Measurement Systems

  • collecting metrics to allow assessments for efficiency and effectiveness


  • any services will require processes – existing or new
  • either change the processes to suit the service design or vice versa

Conclusion: ITIL® v3 Foundation Service Design

This ITIL® v3 Foundation study note discusses how Service Design fits in the service lifecycle, its purpose, objectives and scope as well as the output – service design package. Factors to be considered during service design are also mentioned including four key elements (people, products, processes, partners) and five aspects (the solution itself, the processes and management information systems to support it, the architecture, and the metrics).

Service level management (SLM) will be discussed in the next part of the Service Design study notes.


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Edward Chung

Edward Chung aspires to become a full-stack web developer and project manager. In the quest to become a more competent professional, Edward studied for and passed the PMP Certification, ITIL v3 Foundation Certification, PMI-ACP Certification and Zend PHP Certification. Edward shares his certification experience and resources here in the hope of helping others who are pursuing these certification exams to achieve exam success.

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5 Responses

  1. Priya says:

    Hi Edward,

    Just want to clarify $300 is for the online course and take the exam for certification.

    Is the online course self paced?

    Do we need to the exam with one year of expiration of the course material?

    Would appreciate your clarification to make my decision.

    Thank you

    • Edward Chung says:

      Yes, the package includes a self paced online course as well as the official ITIL Foundation exam voucher allowing you to take the ITIL Foundation exam online. The descriptions of the package says that you need to take the official exam within the 1-year validity period. But you may ask GreyCampus directly for any exception cases.

      Wish you ITIL success!

  2. Amaar Malik says:

    Hi Edward,

    can you please email me a document of all the complied notes of ITIL V3 Foundations. Please and Thanks so much

    [email protected]

    • Edward Chung says:

      Sorry as I do not have a compiled notes document, I cannot email you one. But you can actually download a PDF file of the notes by sharing. Hope this helps.