AXELOS ITIL® Research: The Story

AXELOS ITIL® Research: The Story


Hopefully you will all have seen the research that AXELOS recently published around the perception of ITIL in the current market. If you haven't had a chance to see it yet, you can download it from the box to the right of this page.

The research has been well received by the community, however it's worth understanding how this all came about, the criteria used and the message that we believe it gives us regarding ITIL.

After the joint venture was resolved in the latter stages of 2013, AXELOS went into "listening mode", talking to the community about where we were at the time and where we thought ITIL should go in the future. We attended events, co-ordinated workshops and started to initiate dialogue with as wide a cross-section of our stakeholders as we could. From these discussions we were able to formulate our plans, publishing the "Onion", the ITIL roadmap and also establish the need for a formal and independent set of research. We approached Enterprise Management Associates (EMA), a well-respected organization, to conduct this research on our behalf.

In order to ensure the research represented a balanced viewpoint from a wide range of participants, we requested that:

  • There was a global view from all of the main regions
  • 40% of respondents had no ITIL qualifications
  • No more than 30% were qualified at Intermediate level or higher A wide range of business size and types were to be included
  • There must be some representation from ITIL V2, V3 and ITIL 2011.

When the results came back we spent a period of time looking at what they told us and again reviewed our plans internally and with partners. We can now share this with you, the practitioners. So what did we find?

Those organizations that saw ITIL as growing in importance were also more likely to see an increase in IT budget

This is vital because, from an ITIL perspective, it's important that IT is seen as a value provider to the business and not simply a cost. You are more likely to have your budget cut if you are seen as a cost whilst a value provider is worth investing in.

ITIL is seen to be more relevant when Cloud and Agile are taken into account

It has long been the view that ITIL maintains and, in fact, increases, its relevance when new innovations like Cloud and Agile are introduced. The research confirms that this view also holds true in the real world; in real organizations working with real projects.

This applies even more so in emerging markets. Indeed 71% see ITIL as having a tangible role in the introduction and support of new initiatives such as DevOps and Agile.

Executives were most likely to view ITIL as very or extremely valuable and also understood the importance of ITIL in relation to new innovations.

It is vital that the "C" level understands the benefits of service management to the health of the business for ITSM to be a success. We were very pleasantly surprised at the strength of support and understanding from the "C" level in the research. This area remains critical for us at AXELOS and we need to continue to enhance the value proposition for businesses using ITIL.

Growth in support for enterprise services leads to a stronger appreciation of ITIL's value

It was of interest that the corporate (non-IT) responders also recognized the value of ITIL. It was also shown to be more relevant to new innovations where integrated enterprise management is actively undertaken.

Business Service Management is seen as important to the business with 67% of - respondents having some form of integrated service management and, of those, three-quarters see ITIL as important or vital in this process, proving its value beyond the IT department.

How are ITIL resources seen now and how can they be improved?

ITIL resources are shown as valuable to the community, with 68% of respondents finding ITIL resources very or exceedingly valuable. The question remains how we can improve this value: as the survey suggests, the potential ways forward include more modularization, guidance related to new and changing technologies plus clearer and simplified content. This re-affirmed our view that we need more complementary guidance, white papers and case studies to show how the core guidance relates to new innovations and how our plans for more modularization will assist both practitioners and businesses to understand and implement our guidance.

How did respondents first hear of ITIL and what is important to them and their organization?

Half the respondents started using ITIL due to an organizational decision but over a third did so because of their own professional goals. ITIL has been proven to enhance the career prospects of its practitioners and this has been recognized by AXELOS as we move towards showing a clear career path for ITSM professionals. Tied in with this is the desire for more role-focused modules, showing the importance for practitioners to see personal development encompassed in ITIL. Interestingly the need for Continuous Personal Development (CPD) was as also highlighted, with over 70% seeing it as important to the organization, individual or both. We are currently looking to introduce a CPD programme enabling relevance to be maintained and contribution rewarded.


What have we learned?

The views expressed in the roadmap have been validated and remain current.

ITIL is seen as a valuable asset, giving value to organizations and individual practitioners.

ITIL is seen as becoming more relevant as the world changes and continues to reward those that use it and adopt it as a cultural change.

We need to show how ITIL interacts with new innovations, through modules and complementary guidance. Even though this research was better than we could have hoped.

We must not get complacent. We are going in the right direction, but there is a long way to go and we need the community to help us to get to where we need to be.

ITIL Research Webinar

We are planning to host a webinar soon to discuss these findings further and to give you the option to speak to some of our ITIL experts. If you would like to take part in the session, please register your interest by emailing [email protected] with your name, email address and time zone, along with any questions you may have. We will confirm a date and time in the coming weeks that best suits the majority of participants.

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The ITIL Research

Its Purpose and the Results

Please download our research findings into the current global perceptions of ITIL.

Based on the research findings, the good news is that ITIL remains highly regarded and considered a valuable investment both now and for the future in all different types of companies across the world.