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Service Validation and Testing from an ITIL perspe
Service Validation and Testing defines the testing of services during the Service Transition phase.  This will ensure that new or changed services are fit for purpose (this is known as utility) and fit for use (this is known as warranty).
Service Validation and Testing's goal is to make sure the delivery of activities adds value that is agreed and expected.  If testing hasn't been carried out properly, additional Incidents and Problems will arise.
There are a number of activities for Service Validation and Testing, these include:
  • Validation and Test management - This consists of planning and managing/controlling and then reporting on the activities that have taken place during all phases to ensure they are fit for purpose/use.
  • Planning and Design - Test planning and design activities take place in the early stages of the Service Lifecycle.  These correlate to resources, supporting services, scheduling milestones for delivery and acceptance.
  • Verification of Test Plan and Design - Test plans and designs are validated to ensure all activities are complete (this also includes test scripts).  Test models are also verified to minimise the risks to the service.
  • Preparation of the Test environment - Prepare and make a baseline of the test environment.
  • Testing - Tests are carried out using manual or automated testing techniques and procedures.  All results are registered.
  • Evaluate Exit Criteria and Report - Actual results are compared with projected results.
  • Clean up and Closure - Ensure the test environment is cleaned.  Learn from previous experiences and identify areas for improvement.


2010-09-30 by "robert.kaiser3"

I am confused about the term "testing" In this context "Testing" refers to established services or components within the service like for instance printers computers and scanners?
Reply on 2010-10-01
The introduction of a new service or simply a modification (Change) to an existing service must ensure that the change verified and has delivered as expected without any detrimental effects to existing and or established services, whether that be functionality of hardware or software interfaces with other services or existing components of the service itself. Failure to undertake such an activity increases the risk to the 'production' or 'live' services, which can potentially undermine the confidence in the service by its customers and potentially the credibility of the company in the marketplace.

If the validation and testing identifies a failing an informed decision can be taken to either back-out the Change or possibly continue with the Change in production and manage the identified issue accordingly. Such decisions are based around risk to the production environment and its customers.

Wherever possible validation and testing should be undertaken and not left to the 'User' of the service to tell you that it has failed, doing so often results in reactive as opposed to proactive activities having to take place, potentially at the expense of other customers - often a prime example of a 'Major Incident'. All this is very stressful, costly and damaging to any organization.

2010-11-29 by "karla.kilian"

Hello, why is not much material available regarding service validation & testing? Is it because noone really engages into the process? Or is it that we have still the idea that testing is for software, not for the service? Or could it be that we just simply don't understand the difference of the software testing, and this "service validation" thing?
Reply on 2010-12-06
More often than not we find that validation and testing is focused on the software as opposed to the actual 'Service' that is to be delivered. Inevitably the validation and testing takes place post 'go-live', and if it fails the overall success of the significant or major change is tarnished. See more info here; The Missing Link.

2011-07-17 by "osadiot"

So after validation and testing, evaluation process can take place... or evaluation is done as part of validation / qualification ?
Reply on 2011-07-22
The 'Evaluation' takes place after validation / testing. The results of the validation and testing are evaluated against the 'predefined and agreed expectations' - the validation and testing are designed to prove or disprove the 'expectations'.

2011-11-09 by "zizofam"

I think "evaluation" takes place in several places during the service transition lifecycle not only after validation and testing. It also occurs during development as well as before the final transition.
Reply on 2011-11-14
Many thanks for your comment regarding the Service Evaluation and Testing.

I would support your comment, but would also say that it does depend on the maturity of the organization in question.

2013-05-14 by "riker"

This defintion of Service Validation and Testing is large, and the best, especially compared to my ITIL Foundation 2011 book. It mentions SV&T just 11 times through whole book, the largest entry is a small paragraph within the Glossary. In contrast Service Level Management is mentioned 47 times and is covered in 21 pages. Seems that most of the processes for SV&T are very individualized per organization and may be beyond the scope of ITIL.

2013-07-11 by "cortitto"

You may find that SV&T is best served as a feature of a CSI program.

I would be surprised to find human capital and ITSM cycles dedicated to SV&T as an "out of the box" process for Service Transition. However it does fit well with the effort required to establish a sustainable, value-adding service improvement initiatvie.

2014-02-06 by "imanthabet"

So, after creating process maps to reflect the to-be state/service. What is the most effective way of testing that the maps really cover most of the real business scenarios and also to discover any possible gaps?
Reply on 2014-02-17
From our experience (Support perspective) we find it extremely beneficial to have all the parties in one room (if possible) and work the scenarios through.

Provide the scenarios in advance of the meeting asking those attending to consider their roles and responsibilities in advance of attending. Having the parties together really does breakdown potential barriers and establishes 'bridges' in advance of going live.

You may find some of your materials will need to be updated accordingly.

2015-03-03 by "yashikvimal"

After going through ITIL Service Transition Book it is interesting to see that Service Validation and Testing topic comes after the Release and Deployment Process. This to me does not follow a logical sequence.

I thought usually the service validation and testing comes first and then release and deployment later. Can someone provide a better insight on these 2 processes ?

2015-08-09 by "yashikvimal"

Hey is it right to say that the Service Validation and testing process is not neccessarily a day to day process but used only when new service is implemented or an existing service goes through a major enhancement. Can anyone comment or explain further on this process.

2015-09-02 by "jon.shuker"

In reply to Yashikvimal - If an organization has any standard SDLC process in place then SV&T has a part to play regardless of the size of the change.

In a project utilizing a Software Development Life Cycle, Testing comes before Release and a lot of the types of testing would be covered (including UAT and Post Validation)to satisfy the business owner.

For small changes - business as usual; release and change control usually verifies that the change has followed a due process, has the required approvals and can go into production.

In summary, SV&T is usually covered if an organization's processes are robust.
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