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What Are the Most Common ITIL Interview Questions?

Itil interview questions

Knowing ITIL interview questions before the actual interview can go a long way towards improving the outcome of the interview – and lowering the chances you’ll make a mistake.

To help you better prepare for that interview, we’ll cover some of the essential topics, concepts, questions, and answers to expect.

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What Are the Most Common ITIL Interview Questions?

ITIL is one of the most common interview topics to expect for jobs that are involved in IT service management (ITSM).

Question types include:

  • Basic questions that assess candidates’ knowledge about ITIL
  • Detailed questions that assess knowledge of specific processes and components within ITIL
  • Scenarios or example questions that assess how you would use ITIL to solve specific problems
  • Questions about past history and experience

Here are a few examples of the types of questions to expect:

What is ITIL? ITIL stands for Information Technology Infrastructure Library. It is a set of principles and best practices designed to help IT plan, deliver, maintain, and change IT services. 

What are the advantages of ITIL? ITIL allows IT teams to define organizational structure clearly, enhance customer satisfaction, improve service availability, improve decision-making, manage finances more efficiently, and control IT services better.

What is Service Strategy? Service Strategy provides an overarching strategy for IT services and aims to align those services with business goals. This stage, or category, focuses on sub-tasks that include Service Portfolio Management, Demand Management, Financial Management, and Strategy Operations.

What are the processes included in Service Design? Service Design, another stage of the ITIL service life cycle, focuses on designing services before deploying them to a production environment. Processes in this stage include Service Catalog Management, Service Level Management, Availability Management, Capacity Management, Service Continuity Management, IT Security Management, and Supplier Management.

Describe Service Transition. Service Transition is the stage designed to manage the transition of new or changed services. This stage aims to perform tasks such as evaluating risk, maintaining service integrity, planning resources, building service deployment mechanisms, and ensuring that services can be supported by the specifications outlined in Service Design.

What are the processes in Service Transition? Transition planning and support, change management, service asset and configuration management, release and deployment management, service validation and testing, and knowledge management.

Describe change management. ITIL’s change management approach, a process within the Service Transition category, is a systematic set of procedures designed to control, manage, and authorize service changes. Changes are first proposed, evaluated, planned, and, after approval by select committees, they are executed and reviewed. 

Outline the differences between standard, normal, and emergency changes. These are categories of change within change management. Standard changes are everyday, low-priority changes that require no authorization or review. Normal changes are those that must be reviewed and approved by the Change Advisory Board (CAB). Emergency changes are critical changes that must be reviewed, approved, and implemented immediately, often to avoid system or service failure.

What is the difference between a process and a function? There are 26 processes and 4 functions in ITIL V3. Processes define policies, standards, guidelines, activities, and instructions, while a function is a group of people or tools needed to deliver certain activities or processes.

What is Continual Service Improvement? Continual Service Improvement (CSI) is an ongoing process of review and improvement aimed at ensuring services stay aligned with business goals. Its steps include identifying business goals, measuring the appropriate data, analyzing that data, presenting findings, and implementing corrective action.

What is the difference between an operating level agreement and a service level agreement? A service level agreement (SLA) describes an agreement between a service provider and their customer. An operating level agreement (OLA) is an agreement between the IT service provider and another unit within the same organization.

What is an event, an incident, a problem, and a known error? Events are occurrences that can be detected and have an impact on IT service delivery. Incidents are disruptions to services, and problems are unknown causes behind incidents. Known errors are existing problems that are well-known and documented.

How does ITIL compare to COBIT? ITIL is focused on ITSM, while COBIT – which stands for Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology – is an IT governance framework. This IT framework covers some of the same territory, but focuses more on top-down organizational needs, such as IT governance, corporate governance, and enterprise architecture.

Tips and Pointers

Preparation can make a big difference in the outcomes of an interview, so it is important to get ready beforehand – in other words, don’t just “wing it,” even if you already have ITIL experience.


  • Jot down every possible question and answer you can think of, including those unrelated to ITIL
  • Rehearse those questions, even in front of a mirror, to improve answer times and the smoothness of your answers
  • Practice questions that focus on specific scenarios, such as those that discuss how you would apply ITIL in certain situations, such as digital transformation programs
  • Answer questions concisely and definitively
  • Research the company and their needs, in order to better understand what they’re looking for and better predict what types of questions they’d ask
  • Choose background stories and experiences, such as prior accomplishments, to deliver when asked certain types of questions
  • Prepare a few questions to ask the interviewer

Ultimately, interviewing is more about establishing a relationship and “feeling out” the other party, rather than simply fielding answers to questions.

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