Any organization implements the information technology infrastructure library framework to ensure that it strictly follows and aligns IT services with the major goals. This framework includes the best practices to manage digital services and IT systems. By understanding the ITIL framework, you can improve the effectiveness and results of your IT department and minimize business expenses.

This article discusses the Agile vs ITIL comparison to determine which IT framework is suitable and more likely to propel your career to greater and novel heights.

Importance of Frameworks in IT Management

The IT framework structures guidelines, operating principles, and best practices to boost IT organizations' success and help them achieve key business goals. With the IT framework, organizations ensure alignment between the procedure of delivering IT services and the value they offer.

These frameworks are essential as IT procedures can be complex and large. Without well-structured operating principles, governance practices and records, service delivery can become inconsistent. Hence, frameworks help protect from service failures by laying out best practices and ensuring that the crucial stages aren’t ignored.

Some of the major IT frameworks are as follows:

  • ITIL
  • IT4IT
  • Six Sigma
  • ISO20000
  • Balanced Scorecard
  • Continual Service Improvement

All the IT frameworks mentioned above aim to align organizations' operational efficiency with their outcomes. However, each framework has a different focus. 

For instance, Six Sigma utilizes data analysis to minimize defects. On the other hand, ITIL focuses on IT service management, and ISO20000 covers organizational risk. Moreover, functions-specific and industry-specific frameworks address areas like telecommunications, government, and healthcare.

Core Principles of Agile

Some of the core principles that can help organizations manage their projects and achieve their goals are as follows:

Frequent Delivery of Working Software

To embrace the change, organizations must give up on their old, monotonous schedule and try to create a shorter range of functions for their tasks. Agile cuts out extreme documentation needed with traditional project management while planning their schedule before starting a task. Hence, a lot of unnecessary paperwork creates trouble and slows things down. This is why you must reach a desired agreement with your stakeholders and team to bring up Agile release planning that will satisfy both parties.

Customer Satisfaction With Continuous and Early Delivery of Valuable Software

By reducing the time between project documentation and customer reporting and then receiving feedback, you can solely focus on the major goal of your project, which is delivering according to the customers' requirements rather than according to your plans.

Welcome Required Changes

To embrace the change, you must implement changes as per your customer, even if it is an additional last-minute effort. Hence, do not wait for another project to implement changes when they can be done in the present project and achieve the desired result instantly. Agile focuses on making you stay on your feet so that you pivot without constantly reinventing the wheel.

Developers and Business People Must Work in Collaboration

The developers and business people talk in different, meaningful languages, representing both sides of the project, which is essential for success. Organizations must build a bridge between the stakeholders and developers so that they can understand each other and work together. 

Encourage Face-to-face Conversations

Creating emails, documenting conversations, and using collaboration software, such as Slack, are all good and effective. However, when moving swiftly, you cannot sit back and wait for a reply. You must talk to your team members in person to get immediate answers. This can be achieved by having distributed teams or working in a single physical space, creating a collaborative environment.

Constant Attention Towards Good Design and Technical Excellence Enhances Agility

Whether your organization is working on coding or something concrete, you must ensure that after each iteration, it keeps improving. You do not need to come back and fix things after each step. Implementing scrum, an agile framework, to complete complex projects helps review and continuously improve and evolve the project.

Benefits of Agile

To provide you a sense of why Agile methodology is popular among project managers and software developers, listed below are some of the major benefits of Agile:

Customer Satisfaction

By including customers in the development process, agile teams keep them in the loop and represent the value of their opinions. Stakeholders also want to stay engaged in the entire project lifecycle to provide feedback and ensure that the result aligns with their needs. With these tailored deliverables, the overall user experience and customer retention will likely increase and improve.

Better Quality

Agile methodologies implement an integrative approach to project management, promoting process improvement at every time and interval. Constantly focusing on quality and improvement is the major principle of Agile, and it helps create superior and better products.


Flexibility is the central theme of Agile. Agile teams can respond to and adapt to changes without disruption, even at the last minute. As project deliverables are not strictly set in stone, teams can reassess and edit their plans and manage their priorities according to the new or updated goals. To be adaptable means that teams can offer consistent delivery and manage the changes put forward by the client accordingly. 

Improved Risk Management

One crucial measure of agility is an organization's approach to risk. If management meditates on communication between customers and developers, the chances of customers becoming dissatisfied are lower. Risk comes from not delivering things in a timely manner. In addition, risk also comes from constantly working on something for months to years and not knowing the results and the reactions of the customers. 

Hence, to control risk accurately, company leaders must step back and promote direct communication between the development team and the customers so that they can receive early feedback and work accordingly.

Increased Cross-Functional Collaboration

Replacing all the procedures of designing things, offering ideas to the engineering team and later engineering things, forwarding those ideas to a testing team, and so on, employees must focus on self-organizing themselves into cross-functional teams with mixed expertise or professionals to handle a specific project at each stage.

Better Job Satisfaction

Agile boosts job satisfaction among developers, so it is pitched as a humane management style. When teams are free to react to customers' needs in real-time, they can seek more value in the software they build.

Challenges With Agile

Some of the common challenges noticed by developers and product owners in the process of implementing Agile project management are:

Inadequate Planning

Several company leaders require a detailed strategy with its benefits and anticipated final cost before approving the project. However, multiple leaders believe that acknowledging the final cost of a project until its completion is insufficient. 

Leaders should inherit a more agile attitude and understand that the plans are important for agile projects but can be executed differently. It can be planned according to the requirements of scoping, project architecture, design work, and cost and time estimates for milestones and sprints. 

Changing Requirements 

Changes can be implemented to the specifications or requirements of a product. Mostly, these modifications are managed, but if they land up at the end of the project, they get postponed until the next sprint, constituting the burden on testers and developers. The testing team must consider risk analysis and begin by monitoring the most crucial features. Moreover, regression testing can also be used to check whether other code sections are impacted and can be automated.

Regular Testing

Testing is a constant process that starts before the development phase instead of being restricted to a particular stage. Testers are expected to start best in features before development or during the process, which results in difficulty. However, developers, testers, and product owners must determine each product's specifications together before building effective acceptance criteria. Hence, before starting development, teams must ensure that each narrative comes with enough acceptance criteria and that everyone understands the story's context. As a result, it becomes easy to develop tests when the features code is complete and implemented.

Core Components of ITIL

The core components of ITIL include:

Service Strategy

The service strategy defines the objectives, vision, and principles of an organization's IT services. It helps align IT services with the business's goals and requirements and plan how to effectively use capabilities and resources.

Service Design

Service design focuses on developing and designing IT services that align with the expectations and requirements of stakeholders and customers. It covers the major aspects, including standards, service architecture call mom, policies, security, continuity, and service level agreements.

Service Transition

The service transition deals with deploying and implementing changed or new IT services. This component of ITIL ensures that all your IT services are validated, tested, and verified before getting released into the live environment.

Service Operation

The service operation covers the regular functions and activities of your IT services. It supports and delivers IT services that are efficient, effective, and reliable for your users and customers.

Continual Service Improvement

The continual service improvement focuses on enhancing the performance and quality of your IT services over time. It includes monitoring, measuring, analyzing, and reporting your IT services and fetching opportunities for improvement on the basis of best practices, feedback, and benchmarks.

Benefits of ITIL

To explore the key benefits of ITIL, refer to the points discussed below:

Data-driven Decision Making

ITIL emphasizes metrics and data, helping organizations grab insights into IT services' performance and enabling data-driven decision-making.

Better Communication

ITIL promotes clear communication channels, fostering collaboration and defining roles, boosting the flow of communication between stakeholders and IT teams.

Superior Service Quality

ITIL sets strict processes, reducing downtime, enhancing service delivery, and ensuring customer satisfaction.

IT-Business Alignment

ITIL covers the gap between business and IT by ensuring alignment of IT investments with business objectives.

Challenges with ITIL

Some of the challenges that come along with ITIL are:

  • Implementation of ITIL is time-consuming.
  • ITIL implementation needs resources from across the organization.
  • Organizations must have a keen understanding before implementing ITIL.
  • Integration of ITIL with other frameworks should be planned carefully.

Common Similarities Between ITIL and Agile

Some common similarities between ITIL and Agile are:

  • Both frameworks emphasize continuous improvement.
  • Both ITIL and Agile consider the great importance of customer satisfaction.
  • Both frameworks use metrics to measure success.
  • You can use both Agile and ITIL together to achieve great results.
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Agile vs ITIL: 7 key differences

To learn the seven key differences between agile vs ITIL, refer to the table given below:





Align IT services with the goals and needs of the business.

Emphasizes flexibility, customer feedback, and collaboration for delivering high-quality software.


It covers a wider range of IT service management processes, including transition, operation, design, service strategy, and continual improvement.

Primarily focuses on the software development process, including methodologies like extreme programming, scrum, and kanban.


It provides a standardized and structured approach, which is less flexible than agile.

Agile methodologies are highly adaptive and flexible, allowing teams to manage the changes rapidly.

Project Management

Focuses on IT processes and services management but does not offer detailed guidance on project management.

Agile methodologies and frameworks include project management practices.

Customer Focus

Aims to deliver higher value to the customers but does not prioritize frequent feedback from customers.

Emphasizes customer feedback and collaboration throughout the entire development process.


It promotes communication through formal and predetermined channels.

Frequent meetings, stand-ups, and reviews precede communication.


Thorough procedure and documentation are needed in addition to following duties and roles.

In agile methodologies, working software is for documentation.

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ITIL 4 vs Agile: Which Holds a Better Future?

By availing yourself of an ITIL certification and becoming an ITIL expert, you can optimize your digital service and deliver the highest value to your customers. On the other hand, by enrolling for an Agile certification and becoming an Agile expert, you will grow towards innovation and shorten the project management cycle for regular delivery.

Hence, when discussing Agile methodology vs. ITIL frameworks, we see that both play major roles and hold a growing future in their respective fields.


Both Agile and ITIL are different frameworks, offering multiple purposes to organizations. Based on a business's needs and goals, it must consider the most suitable framework to achieve those goals. 

To assist organizations in implementing the right framework with the right principles, become an IT expert by enrolling for the Agile and ITIL certification at Simplilearn.


1. Can Agile and ITIL be used together? 

Agile and ITIL can work very well together. Despite their differences, both concepts have multiple similarities.

2. How long does it take to see results from ITIL vs Agile? 

Even though there is no specific timeframe within which Agile or ITIL will show results, Agile promotes self-organizing teams, which are free to work as they please. On the other hand, ITIL facilitates the realignment and alignment of IT services according to the fluctuating needs of the business.

3. What are the costs associated with implementing Agile and ITIL?

The cost of implementing agile depends on key factors such as project duration, team size, team member rates, and other costs. However, location, size, and budget play a major role in calculating the cost of implementing ITIL, and no specific cost can be acknowledged beforehand.