Beyond Job Titles: ITIL® V3 Roles and Responsibilities

Beyond Job Titles: ITIL® V3 Roles and Responsibilities

Vijay Reddy

Last updated September 12, 2018


In any organization, quality service delivery depends on people and the roles they play. The value of creating roles and responsibilities is especially important in IT organizations.

A role includes a set of responsibilities, activities, and authorities granted to a person or team, defined in a process or function. One person or team may wear many hats by playing multiple roles—for example, incident manager and problem manager roles may be performed by a single person. 

A role is often confused with a job title; however, they aren’t always the same—different organizations use different job titles and job descriptions which suit their needs, and the people holding these job titles may perform one or more roles.
In this article, we’ll describe the various ITIL v3 job profiles and ITIL roles that are available along with the responsibilities associated with these jobs in IT firms across the globe.

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ITIL v3 Service Strategy Roles

Service Strategy provides guidance on clarifying and prioritizing a service provider’s investments in services. Here are the major Service Strategy roles:

IT Steering Group (ISG)

• The IT Steering Group (ISG) sets the direction and strategy for IT services. It includes members of senior management from business and IT.
• The ISG reviews business and IT strategies in order to make sure that they are aligned.
• It also sets priorities of service development programs/projects.

Financial Manager

The Financial Manager is an ITIL role responsible for managing an IT service provider’s budgeting, accounting, and charging requirements.

Service Portfolio Manager

The Service Portfolio Manager decides the strategy that needs to be used to serve customers in cooperation with the IT Steering Group and develops the service provider's offerings and capabilities.

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ITIL V3 Service Design Roles

Service Catalogue Manager

The Service Catalogue Manager is responsible for maintaining the service catalogue, ensuring that all information within the service catalogue is accurate and up-to-date.

Service Level Manager

  • The Service Level Manager is responsible for negotiating service level agreements (and making sure they are met), along with IT Service Management processes, operational level agreements, and underpinning contracts are appropriate for the agreed service level targets.
  • The Service Level Manager also monitors and reports on the service levels.

Service Owner

  • The Service Owner is responsible for delivering a particular service within the agreed service levels.
  • Typically acts as the counterpart of the Service Level Manager when negotiating Operational Level Agreements (OLAs).
  • Often, the Service Owner will lead a team of technical specialists or an internal support unit.

Service Design Manager

The Service Design Manager’s ITIL role includes responsibility for producing high-quality, secure, and resilient designs for new or improved services. This includes producing and maintaining all design documentation.

Applications Analyst/ Architect

The Applications Analyst/Architect is responsible for designing applications that are required for a service; this includes the specification of technologies, application architectures, and data structures as a basis for application development or customization.

Technical Analyst/ Architect

The Technical Analyst/Architect is responsible for designing infrastructure components and systems that are required for a service, including specifications for technologies and products as a basis for their procurement and customization.

Risk Manager

The ITIL V3 role of Risk Manager is responsible for identifying, assessing, and controlling risks. This includes analyzing the value of assets to the business, identifying threats to those assets, and evaluating how vulnerable each asset is to those threats.

Capacity Manager

  • The Capacity Manager is responsible for ensuring that services and infrastructure are able to deliver the agreed capacity and performance targets in a cost-effective and timely manner.
  • Considers all resources required to deliver the service, and plans for short, medium, and long-term business requirements.

Availability Manager

  • The Availability Manager is responsible for defining, analyzing, planning, measuring, and improving all aspects of the availability of IT services.
  • Responsible for ensuring that all IT infrastructure, processes, tools, roles, etc., are appropriate for the agreed service level targets for availability.

IT Service Continuity Manager

  • The IT Service Continuity Manager is responsible for managing risks that could seriously impact IT services.
  • This person ensures that the IT service provider can provide minimum agreed service levels in cases of disaster, by reducing the risk to an acceptable level and planning for the recovery of IT services.

IT Security Manager

  • The IT Security Manager is responsible for ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of an organization’s assets, information, data, and IT services.
  • Is usually involved in an organizational approach to Security Management which has a wider scope than the IT service provider, and includes handling of paper, building access, phone calls etc., for the entire organization.

Compliance Manager

The Compliance Manager’s responsibility is to ensure that standards and guidelines are followed, and that proper, consistent accounting or other practices are being employed; this includes making sure that external legal requirements are fulfilled.

IT Architect

The IT Architect defines a blueprint for the future development of the technological landscape, taking into account the service strategy and newly available technologies.

Supplier Manager

  • The Supplier Manager is responsible for ensuring that value for money is obtained from all suppliers.
  • Ensures that contracts with suppliers support the needs of the business, and that all suppliers meet their contractual commitments.

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ITIL® V3 Service Transition roles and boards

Change Manager

  • The Change Manager authorizes and documents all changes in the IT Infrastructure and its components (Configuration Items), in order to maintain a minimum amount of interruptive effects upon the running operation. 
  • In the case of further-reaching changes, involves the Change Advisory Board (CAB).

Change Advisory Board (CAB)

The CAB is a group of people that advise the Change Manager in the assessment, prioritization, and scheduling of changes. This board is usually made up of representatives from all areas within the IT Service Provider, the business, and third parties such as suppliers.

Change Owner

  • Change Owner is the person backing a change and holding a budget for its implementation.
  • In most cases the Change Owner is identical with the RFC initiator.
  • Typically, changes are owned by Service Management roles (e.g., the Problem or Capacity Manager) or members of IT management.

Emergency Change Advisory Board (ECAB)

As the name of the role suggests, the ECAB is a subset of the Change Advisory Board that makes decisions about high impact emergency changes.

Project Manager

The Project Manager is responsible for planning and coordinating the resources to deploy a major release within the predicted cost, time, and quality estimates.

Application Developer

  • The Application Developer is responsible for making available applications and systems which provide the required functionality for IT services.
  • This includes the development and maintenance of custom applications as well as the customization of products from software vendors.

Release Manager

The Release Manager is an ITIL role responsible for planning, scheduling, and controlling the movement of releases to test in live environments. The primary objective is to ensure that the integrity of the live environment is protected and that the correct components are released.

Configuration Manager

  • The Configuration Manager is responsible for maintaining information about configuration items that are required to deliver IT services.
  • Maintains a logical model, containing the components of the IT infrastructure (CIs) and their associations.

Knowledge Manager

  • The Knowledge Manager ensures that the IT organization is able to gather, analyze, store, and share knowledge and information.
  • The primary goal is to improve efficiency by reducing the need to rediscover knowledge.

Test Manager

The Test Manager ensures that deployed releases and resulting services meet customer expectations and verifies that IT operations are able to support the new service.

ITIL® V3 Service Operation roles and groups 

Service Operation focuses on the principles, processes, functions, and operational activities that enable individual and organizations successfully manage how their products and services perform. In the Service Organization, you’ll likely find these roles: 

1st Level Support

  • The responsibility of First Level Support is to register and classify received incidents and to undertake an immediate effort in order to restore failed IT Service as quickly as possible.
  • If no ad-hoc solution can be achieved, First Level Support will transfer the incident to expert Technical Support Groups (Second Level Support).
  • First Level Support also processes Service Requests and keeps users informed about their incidents' status at agreed intervals.

2nd Level Support

  • Second Level Support takes over incidents which cannot be solved immediately by First Level Support.
  • If necessary, they will request external support, e.g., from software or hardware manufacturers.
  • The aim is to restore the failed IT service as quickly as possible.
  • If no solution can be found, the Second Level Support passes on the incident to Problem Management.

3rd Level Support

  • Third Level Support is typically located at hardware or software manufacturers.
  • Their services are requested by Second Level Support if required for solving an incident.
  • The aim is to restore the failed IT Service as quickly as possible.

Major Incident Team

A dynamically established team of IT managers and technical experts, usually under the leadership of the Incident Manager, created to focus on the resolution of a Major Incident.

Incident Manager

  • The Incident Manager is responsible for the effective implementation of the “Incident Management” process, and carries out the respective reporting procedure.
  • Represents the first stage of escalation for incidents, should these not be resolvable within the agreed Service Levels.

Problem Manager

  • The Problem Manager is responsible for managing the lifecycle of all Problems.
  • The primary objectives are to prevent incidents from happening and to minimize the impact of incidents that cannot be prevented.
  • Maintains information about known errors and workarounds.

Service Request Fulfillment Group

  • Service Request Fulfillment Groups specialize in the fulfillment of certain types of Service Requests.
  • Typically, First Level Support will process simpler requests, while others are forwarded to the Specialized Fulfillment Groups.

Access Manager

  • The Access Manager grants authorized users the right to use a service, while preventing access to non-authorized users.
  • The Access Manager essentially executes policies defined in IT Security Management.

IT Operations Manager

An IT Operations Manager is needed to take overall responsibility for all of the IT Operations Management activities, which include operations control and facilities management.

IT Operator

  • IT Operators are ITIL roles responsible for performing day-to-day operational activities.
  • Typical responsibilities include performing backups, ensuring that scheduled jobs are performed, and installing standard equipment in the data center.

IT Facilities Manager

  • The IT Facilities Manager is responsible for managing the physical environment where the IT infrastructure is located.
  • This includes all aspects of managing the physical environment, for example power and cooling, building access management, and environmental monitoring.

ITIL V3 roles within Continual Service Improvement

CSI Manager

  • The Continual Service Improvement (CSI) Manager is responsible for managing improvements to ITIL® V3 roles within Service Strategy IT Service Management processes and IT services.
  • Continually measures the performance of the service provider and design improvements to processes, services, and infrastructure in order to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and cost effectiveness.

Process Manager

  • The Process Manager is responsible for planning and coordinating all process management activities.
  • Supports all parties involved in managing and improving processes, in particular the process owners.
  • This role will also coordinate all changes to processes, thereby making sure that all processes cooperate in a seamless way.

Process Owner

  • A Process Owners is a person responsible for ensuring that a process is fit for purpose. The Process Owner’s responsibilities include sponsorship, design, and continual improvement of the process and its metrics.
  • This role is often assigned to staff holding one of the major Service Management roles (e.g. the Incident Manager is the Process Owner of the Incident Management process).

ITIL V3 Role Outside the IT Organization

As you can probably guess, a Customer is someone who buys goods or services. The Customer of an IT Service Provider is the person or group who defines and agrees the service level targets.


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About the Author

Vijay Reddy has several years of experience in delivering and managing IT Services, Software Development, Product and Production Support and has expertise in IT strategy consulting, Governance and risk management, IT security, cloud computing and implementation around large customer accounts, managing the delivery of large outsourced IT Service and software development engagements and in depth understanding of deal structures and delivery options and models. His experience has been across diverse industry segments – Banking, consumer products, Retail, Oil & Gas and Hospitality. Vijay is an APM Group International certified and accredited Project Management (Prince2®), Programme Management (MSP®) and IT Governance (COBIT5®) Trainer, Exams Proctor, Supervisor and Invigilator. He is also EXIN accredited trainer for ITIL – 41 credits (All Modules leading unto expert), ISO 20000, ISO 27002, Lean IT and Cloud Computing.

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