In today’s global scenario, business and technology have overlapped each other and are linked inextricably. To remain competitive, companies need to focus on adapting to the latest IT services and platforms. However, the process of migration for a company and its IT capabilities can be taxing. To ease this migration and ensure that the selection, planning, delivery and maintenance of IT are of a certain standard within the organisation, a standardised framework called the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) was designed.
This framework of ITIL® ensures that the implementation of IT services for an organisation focuses on efficiency and predictable service deliverability. It ensures that the IT services department in any organisation can become an active business partner.
ITIL® is gaining importance in the world of business such that without it, the resources spent on designing and developing an IT service management (ITSM) process seem like a loss. This makes businesses less competitive and in the end, alienates customers.
IT professionals are likely to have heard of the ITIL® framework, i.e., Information Technology Infrastructure Library. Many within the field may also have thought of pursuing the coveted ITIL® certifications. Anyone in pursuit of these ITIL® certifications have one question in mind- Is the investment of resources worth the return? It is essential to analyze the costs of attaining these ITIL® certifications spread across various levels and the benefits one can expect. This cost-benefit analysis is necessary to help one decide whether these certifications are an appropriate and beneficial investment for individuals and their business. Before exploring more about the costs of obtaining the ITIL® certifications, let us briefly understand what ITIL® is.
Simply put, ITIL® is a set of specific practices designed to manage IT service management (ITSM). The ITIL® framework has been developed in such a manner that its methods can be adopted by any organization, irrespective of its type or size. The structure aims to do a straightforward thing, i.e., help organizations align IT with their business strategies and ensure that this alignment results in value and a minimum level of competency. In its endeavour to simplify the alignment of IT within a business, ITIL® has defined a well documented and designed framework which includes a set of processes and procedures, checklists, and tasks which help in ensuring compliance, calculating improvement, and steer clear of commonly made mistakes – all in order to make sure that the customer, who is the end user, is delivered the best-in-class services.
ITSM, a preeminent and prominent framework, focuses on service delivery and is recognized around the globe. To ensure that it is well implemented, ITIL® was put in place and now is owned as well as maintained by AXELOS which is a joint venture between the United Kingdom’s Cabinet Office and Capita. While ITIL® does stand for Information Technology Infrastructure Library, it is now mostly and in fact officially known as ITIL.
AXELOS maintains and oversees the entire ITIL® framework, as well as accredits a set of training and exam institutions to smoothen the process of ITIL® certifications. AXELOS has ensured that there are numerous ITIL® accredited training organizations (ATOs) whose purpose is to deliver training and certification examinations, the access to which is available on the AXELOS website.
A candidate pursuing an ITIL® certification has a choice when it comes to obtaining the certifications - between certification providers who are accredited by AXELOS for providing the necessary training and examinations or non-accredited providers. The latter may cost less, but their course material and certifications are not vouched for, especially by AXELOS. Also, the cost of the certification varies depending on the choice made. The fee also varies, based on the country in which the candidate resides. Other elements influencing the price include whether the course is taken in-person or online or is provided in-house by the company the candidate is working in. Of the five levels of candidacy, the last one, i.e., the ITIL® Master level certification is set to cost $4,000.
Axelos has recently revealed the ITIL® V4 certification scheme, which includes two different designation modules - ITIL® Managing Professional (ITIL® MP) and ITIL® Strategic Leader (ITIL® SL). However, the ITIL® V3 is still operational and has a cost structure based on the level being pursued. The first level is the ITIL® Foundation certification. The candidate who wishes to pursue this certification can purchase an online proctored ITIL® foundation exam for US $314 if they are in the US or Canada. As mentioned, the exam fee varies from country to country. So, for example, if the candidate is in the United Kingdom, their examination fee would be £269 instead. It is important to note that the price is based on the country where the candidate takes up the certification exam and not their home country. The exam costs for some of the countries are as under: US / Canada $314, UK £269, Australia AU $395, India INR 15,000.
In the latter section, the components of the ITIL® certification have been listed to let candidates know that there is no one fixed cost of attaining the ITIL® certification or giving the ITIL® examination.
Basically, it is essential to understand that the ITIL® Certification price may depend on a few factors:
ITIL, on account of its immeasurable value and contribution, is being adopted across the globe and industries. Global brands such as HSBC, IBM, and NASA are implementing and executing ITSM strategies with the help of ITIL. For these companies and many others, the main advantage of ITIL® has always been its flexibility and scalability: organizations can invest intermittently into the ITIL® infrastructure and put in as little or as much as they’d prefer. It is also possible that they can combine the ITIL® framework with other popular frameworks such as COBIT, Six Sigma, and TOGAF.
An organization can benefit immensely if one applies for, studies for and obtains an official ITIL® certification since it ensures that the candidate is familiar with and may even indicate mastery of ITIL® principles and practices which can be applied for the benefit of the organization. Here, it is important to note that ITIL® certifications can be sought by individuals only and not by an entire organization. An organization, when it refers to itself as ITIL® certified, is, in fact, referring to a different framework, i.e. the standard of the ISO/IEC 20000 or it could be encouraging and training its employees to pursue and attain ITIL® certifications.
The candidate taking the ITIL® Foundation exam has to consider a set of costs that he or she will incur. There will be the ITIL® Foundation exam cost that the candidate will have to bear to obtain the ITIL® certification. If the candidate plans to take the ITIL® course pack to prepare for the examination, it needs to be added to the ITIL® certification cost. There are certain additional costs that may also have to be borne by the candidate, depending on their preferences.
Some of the other cost components for an ITIL® certification are as under:
Candidates may not have factored in the cost of an ITIL® course and may want to pursue the path of self-studying through a study guide. It is not mandatory for those seeking ITIL® V4 Foundation to attend ITIL® training. If that is the case, the candidate has to factor in the cost of self-studying, which could include a study book edition which may cost around $30, if bought as a paperback or less if bought as a soft copy on the internet.
Candidates wishing to prepare for the ITIL® certification in a manner that it is secure, need a study plan. Preparation plans for such candidates must include ITIL® practice tests. Many professional ITIL® certification exam websites have practice tests listed online which cost up to $25-$50. There are, however, free practice tests available online for the ITIL® V4 certification. These free practice tests, which are full-length and simulate the actual test, will help candidates bring down the overall cost of their ITIL® V4 certification especially if the candidate is not planning on attending the ITIL® course at a training institute or with an ITIL® training provider. In this scenario, as mentioned already, these training providers can get the candidates to access full-length practice tests.
When pursuing such certifications, one always needs to keep a contingency in mind or a buffer in case of any last minute or additional needs. To ease the stress of the examination and the candidates’ jitters, more tests can be availed. To ensure a quick and smooth revision of concepts, techniques, and resources like process diagrams, mind maps, flashcards, etc. can be used by the candidates.
Basically, the components of the ITIL® certification for a candidate can include the ITIL® exam, the ITIL® course, ITIL® Study Guide, ITIL® Practice tests and other resources. Therefore, candidates can, before choosing an ITIL® training provider, assess these costs and then come to a conclusion.
While performing a cost-benefit analysis for ITIL® certification, it is essential to understand the benefits of ITIL® V4 foundation certification, which include the following:
Succinctly put, the components of the cost are
A combination of these benefits and the current scope and growth witnessed in the field of ITSM, the ITIL® V4 certifications is almost like a mandatory pursuit for anyone wishing to embark on a career path in ITSM. This is especially true as ITSM is a field whose prospects are continually increasing with time as the dependency on IT by organizations to be competitive and have a sustainable business model, is expanding.
In the field of ITSM, a professional has to be agile, nimble and ensure improvement to the business processes in order to live up to the ever-changing needs of customers. The ITIL® framework has factored this in and has an in-built phase called the ‘Continual Service Improvement’ phase. It runs across the remaining four core areas. Hence, it is recommended that the earlier one goes for ITIL® V4 foundation, the better it is - whether it is an individual or an organization
ITIL® V3 offers five different certification levels (Changed with ITIL® V4):
The cost of each level differs, based on the components mentioned above, the country where the exam is given and the mode of taking the examination. An essential consideration in the ITIL® certifications are the modes available for taking the certification, which also majorly influences the cost. The various methods are:
A candidate does not need to go anywhere in order to take the ITIL® examinations. Especially, if the candidate’s career and job do not allow for the time to go to an examination center or an ATO, this option opens up the opportunity to pursue the certification from the comfort of their home or office.
Here’s how an Online Proctored exam is conducted.
If the candidate has a computer along with webcam and internet access, they can take the exam and obtain the certification via the online proctored exam option. The candidate can sign up for the online exam from the convenience of their home or laptop at any time. Most ITIL® V3 and V4 providers offer this option where the candidate will be proctored when they are taking the exam. This option is beneficial when the candidate is on a service desk or in a job which has a shift rotation system.
Usually, ATOs not only conduct the ITIL® course but also administer the examination post completion of the course. Therefore, it is vital to choose a good ATO and this will ensure that the candidate is trained well and can give the exam at the center.
Pearson VUE is the Prometric partner for ITIL® and AXELOS for administering the ITIL® certification examinations. This option offers a lot of flexibility as the candidate can choose to avail it even if they have attended training at an ATO center or done self - study. The candidate can schedule the exam at a Pearson VUE Prometric center which is close to them.
The cost of the ITIL® certification depends on whether the candidate prefers to take online training or classroom training. The cost of the entire course varies based on this choice and the geographical location, if it is a classroom session.
This gives the candidate the flexibility of learning and training from anywhere, anytime and at their pace from an ITIL® course which is online and explains the ITIL® Framework. Actually, the candidate gets more from the online ITIL® course than the other options.
The cost of an ITIL® Certification online class is usually much lower than that of a classroom mode. On average, the ITIL® online certification may cost around $275. It may be available for a lower or higher price, depending on the country in which the candidate is taking the examination. In the UK, for example, it could be around £200.00 while in India it could be approximately ₹15000. Comparatively, a session in the classroom could be anywhere around $2000.
A very viable and financially feasible option, if one is looking at a low-priced ITIL® Certification option would be the monthly subscription of the online mode. These come at a price as low as $50 per month. Whether the candidate can finish the course in one month or not is entirely dependent on the drive and motivation of the candidate. If they thrive under tight schedules and timelines, this is a very feasible option. Also, the candidate can then actively reduce their overall ITIL® Certification cost.
In online mode, the candidate can receive access to these resources:
This post has endeavoured to give a full price list for the ITIL® V3 Foundation certification examination from Peoplecert’s website. The prices mentioned are without discounts or offers that Peoplecert runs occasionally.
|Country||ITIL®-F Certification exam fee|
|United States||US $314|
|United Arab Emirates||US $314|
The ITIL® Foundation, as mentioned earlier, is an entry-level certification, i.e., the first certification in a series and is fairly easy to clear. If the candidate has opted for a course and taken the time to prepare, they would definitely pass the ITIL® examinations. It is imperative that the candidate, however, completes the course.
In the rare scenario that the candidate does fail, it is possible for them to buy a new exam voucher and give the exam again, or the candidate can appeal to the ATO for a re-evaluation of their answers for a nominal fee. The current re-evaluation fee stands at around US $100 - US $150 and the candidate is refunded the price if the outcome is favorable. However, if the outcome is not favorable, the candidate will lose the appeal fee and they will have to buy a new exam voucher.
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