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Configuration Management within the ITIL framework

Configuration Management is addressed in ITIL’s Service Transition publication. The document describes Configuration Management as the process responsible for managing services and assets to support the other Service Management processes.

Configuration Management is planned and implemented in conjunction with Change Management and Release Management to ensure that the service provider can manage its IT assets and configurations effectively. Configuration Management enables enterprises to efficiently identify, control, maintain, and verify the versions of CIs that exist in their infrastructure. Planning is an important part of Configuration Management, because planning ahead enables you to understand the impact that an incident or change could have on your infrastructure.

Responsibility for implementing controls can be delegated, but accountability remains with the responsible manager. Those authorizing the change should provide the manager with information on the cost, risks, and impact of a proposed change and a list of resources required for its implementation.

Configuration Management defines and controls the components of services and infrastructure and maintains accurate configuration information about the historical, planned, and current state of services and infrastructure.

Effective Configuration Management provides the following benefits:

  • Accommodates changes to and reuse of standards and best practices.
  • Significantly reduces incident resolution time by using a central repository for critical infrastructure data that can be accessed by other applications.
  • Includes configuration grouping and business relationships.
  • Enables you to meet business and customer control objectives and requirements.
  • Provides accurate configuration information to enable people to make decisions at the right time. For example, to authorize changes and releases or to resolve incidents and problems faster.
  • Minimizes the number of quality and compliance issues caused by improper configuration of services and assets.
  • Optimizes the use of service assets, IT configurations, capabilities, and resources.