ITIL Demand Management (Steps Involved and Challenges)

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ITIL Demand Management

Ensuring sustainable service levels can be a daunting task. It’s hard to know where to start and what steps to take to ensure our services are always up and running.

By using ITIL demand management, we can create a framework for ensuring that our service levels are always maintained. In addition, it helps us identify and track current and future service demands so we can plan accordingly.

This process also allows us to optimize resources and prevent over or under-servicing customers.

In this blog post, we will explore the steps involved in the ITIL processes, the pattern of business activity (PBA), its activities, benefits, challenges, and tips for success.

What is ITIL Demand Management? 

Information Technology Infrastructure Library demand management is the process of planning, tracking, and controlling the continuous delivery of IT services against agreed-upon service levels. It includes capacity planning, service portfolio management, ordering, and fulfillment strategies.

It simplifies providing customer service in a quality-oriented, cost-effective manner. Demand management is an essential part of ensuring sustainable service levels.

What are the Steps Involved?

There are five steps involved in the ITIL demand management process:

Infographics on Steps involved in the ITIL Demand Management


  1. Identify customer service requirements- This step involves understanding customers’ needs and determining their expectations of the organization’s services. 
  2. Translation of these requirements into operational service levels- Once customer requirements have been identified, they must be translated into measurable operational service levels. 
  3. Forecasting and planning to meet these service levels- This step involves ensuring that the organization has the resources and capacity to meet the forecasted demand. 
  4. Tracking and trend analysis- It can track changes in customer demand over time. This information can be utilized to identify trends and forecast the future market. 
  5. Continual review and optimization of the process- It is essential to continually review and optimize the ITIL demand management process to ensure it is effective and efficient.

The Pattern of Business Activity (PBA)

The Pattern of Business Activity (PBA) concept in ITIL demand management refers to how an organization’s resources are used throughout the year. 

Organizations typically have peak periods in their business activity, and the PBA helps identify these patterns so businesses can better plan their IT resources accordingly.

For example, suppose an organization knows its website usage typically increases significantly during the holiday season. In that case, it can plan accordingly by ensuring its servers handle increased traffic.

Based on PBA, we can measure the following aspects of customer service usage.

Measuring Aspects of Customer Service Usage
  • Frequency-Frequency is the number of times an activity occurs over some time.
  • Volume-Volume is the number of units involved in an activity.
  • Duration- It is the amount of time taken to complete an activity.
  • Location-Locations are places where activity is conducted.

Demand management vs. capacity management vs. availability management in ITIL

There is a slit difference between demand management,  capacity management, and availability management in ITIL.

Demand management focuses on the volume and frequency of the service needed for the customer. 

Capacity management focuses on the speed and efficiency of the service.

Availability management focuses on service availability to support the client in fulfilling their business requirements.

ITIL Demand Management Activities

The process includes the following activities:

  • Establishing and maintaining a service catalog
  • Identifying and qualifying new service requests
  • Determining the business impact of service requests
  • Prioritizing service requests
  • Allocating resources to meet service request demands
  • Monitoring and reporting on service request demands

ITIL Benefits

There are several benefits of using this process, including the following: 

  • First, organizations can create a framework for ensuring their service levels are always maintained.
  • This process helps to identify and track current and future service demands so that organizations can plan accordingly.
  • It also helps organizations optimize resources and prevent over or under-servicing customers.
  • Demand management can provide valuable insights into trends and customer/business needs trends by tracking and managing requests for IT services. This information can decide service levels, capacity planning, and other areas. 
  • Organizations can avoid unnecessarily over or under-spending on IT resources by understanding and managing service demand. 


The main challenges involved in the ITIL process are 

  1. Accurately predicting future demand for IT services
  2. Aligning that demand with available resources
  3. Ensuring all requests for new or changed services are appropriately tracked and fulfilled.

Additional challenges can include 

  1. Managing competing demands from different business units within an organization
  2. Balancing short-term operational needs against long-term strategic goals
  3. Dealing with unexpected spikes in demand due to incidents or events

Tips for success with ITIL

  1. Make sure that customer requirements are clearly understood and documented. 
  2. Verify that service levels are realistic and achievable. 
  3. Ensure that required resources are available to meet projected demand. 
  4. Ensure the demand management process is reviewed and optimized regularly.


What is the demand prognosis?

Demand prognosis is a technique used in demand management to estimate future service demand. It involves predicting future service demand based on past trends and statistical analysis. This data can then be utilized to schedule resources and plan capacity accordingly.


Demand management is a critical process in any organization, and the ITIL demand management process is no exception. With this framework’s help, you can ensure that your strategy is well-organized and efficient.

By taking the time to understand the steps involved, the PBA, and the benefits and challenges of implementing this process, you can set your organization up for success.