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ITIL® certification levels: A comprehensive guide

What is ITIL®?ITIL® is a library, a set of detailed practices for IT service management (ITSM). Earlier known as the Information Technology Infrastructure Library, it aims to deliver IT services concerning the needs of the business. ITIL® frameworks assist the companies in improving their ITSM and providing strong customer service.Certification LevelsAs there is a distinct set of rules to take into account, for the ease of students and organizations, ITIL® certification has been divided into five levels, starting from Foundation to Masters.The previous version of the ITIL® V3 was divided into 5 classes -Foundation: This is the first-level certification course that teaches the fundamentals and general concepts, terminology, and elements practiced in the ITIL® Lifecycle.Practitioner: This level aims to teach candidates how to adapt and adopt the skills of ITIL® during their daily work life. It is the most recent addition to the levels.Intermediate: This is a more in-depth study of the previous stages. Here, different modules are taken up to teach the various approaches and plans executed by following the framework. This certification is considered as the common ITIL® qualification in many IT sectors.Expert: This certification is considered as the esteemed qualification which depicts skills, expertise and a great understanding of the ITIL® framework.Master level: This is the final stage of the certification, which proves a comprehensive understanding of the principles, procedures and exceptional methods of ITIL®. It also demonstrates the candidate's superior skills. The master’s certified candidate is considered to be the best among others due to their knowledge and expertise.As the level increases, the depth, value, and requirements of the certifications increase parallelly.The latest version of the ITIL® V4 is reportedly the most flexible and superior version released till now. The updates are highly valuable because they have been implemented after considering the feedbacks and reviews of 1000s of professionals.Since the problems are resolved through steps, this increases the credibility of the ITIL® framework and processes exponentially. Also, this version has been designed to be flexible and adaptable as per the ease of the employees and students.The transition from ITIL® V3 to ITIL® V4Now, we understand that there are some significant upgrades in ITIL® V4, but the question is, what about those who are currently enrolled in ITIL® V3 or have already passed the previous versions.For your concerns, AXELOS has addressed the transition issue and the process is rather simple. These are the best options as suggested by AXELOS on how a candidate can move from the older version of ITIL® to ITIL® 4.Foundation course For those who have started the certification course and have only reached the current Foundation certification, or have earned up to six additional credits, they are recommended to begin again with the latest version of the ITIL® 4. It's because of the changes that are mentioned, have been revised and upgraded. Therefore, it will be better for them to restart from the beginning as they will be in sync with the current updates.Practitioner CourseSince the student has just begun, if he/she has not collected more than 6 credits, it is advisable to join the ITIL® V4 foundation course and start from scratch. However, if they have collected more than 6 credits, it is advisable to continue with ITIL® V3 only.Intermediate Course The situation is rather tricky for those who are completing the intermediate level of the ITIL® V3. Since AXELOS doesn't want students to unnecessarily waste their valuable efforts, if students have collected more than six credits beyond the foundation level, they are advised to continue with their ITIL® V3 journey.It is also worth noting that the Transition module will not be released until the second half of 2019, so this gives students a fair time to collect their required credits.Expert Certification Students who have already achieved a minimum of 17 ITIL® Credits and have attained the level of Expert level will have the choice of practicing the ITIL® 4 Managing Professional (MP) Transition module when it is published.This will enable them to join the stage of ITIL® Managing Professional (MP). Following this, all they need to do is to join the ITIL® Leader Digital & Strategy module. It will assist them in achieving the ITIL® Strategic Leader (SL) designation. By this stage, they will be eligible to apply for the ultimate level of ITIL® Master.Below are the required credits and details on the transition path -ITIL® V3 Certification LevelThe Path for transition to V4ITIL® V3 FoundationSimply take the ITIL® V4 Foundation to transition to the new ITIL® certification.ITIL® V3 PractitionerTake ITIL® V4 Foundation and further modules in the area of interest to become ITIL® specialist or strategistContinue with ITIL® V3 certification until you gather 17 credits and become eligible to take ITIL® MP levelITIL® V3 IntermediateContinue collecting credits from ITIL® V3 certification and when credits reach 17, you can give ITIL® MP moduleITIL® V3 ExpertSimply take ITIL® V4 MP module to transition to new Expert level of ITIL® V4What is the ITIL® certification path level?EligibilityMany candidates have a doubt on what the eligibility criteria for the ITIL® certification is. Before proceeding to the certification path, let's get this doubt cleared. There are no prerequisites required for taking the certification course. It's just suggested that the candidate should have some past experience in the IT sector.Now that we are clear with the most basic doubt, let's continue towards the path of certification.Certification PathThis section will deal with the journey to the Certification Path. Throughout the certification course, there’s a certain number of ITIL® Credits awarded when you clear the levels through examination. These credits are the key to unlock the next level of certification or training.1. Foundation Course - As discussed earlier, it is the introductory course to the ITIL® Service Management.Training: Required.Prerequisites: Not RequiredExamination: Yes, RequiredAwards: 2 ITIL® creditsCertificate: Yes.2. Intermediate Course -The next step after Foundation course. It consists of two streams and within those two streams are various modules.Prerequisites: ITIL® Foundation Certificate.Training: Yes, requiredExamination: Yes. The credits earned after the examination will be presented in braces for every module.Certificate: Yes, for each moduleService Lifecycle stream modules: Service Design - 3 creditsService Strategy - 3 creditsService Operation - 3 creditsService Transition - 3 credits    Continual Service Improvement - 3 creditsService Capability stream modules: Release, Control, and Validation - 4 creditsService Offerings and Agreements - 4 creditsPlanning, Protection, and Optimization - 4 creditsOperational Support, and Analysis - 4 credits3. Managing Across Service Lifecycle – MALCThe conclusive segment in the qualification system before obtaining the esteemed certification of Expert is the stage called - MALC.Prerequisites: ITIL® Foundation. 15 credits (Intermediate level) + 2 credits. Hence, 17 credits in total.Training: Yes, required.Examination: YesAwards: 5 ITIL® creditsCertificate: Yes4. Expert Course The highly valued certification which is the proof of superior knowledge and expertise.Prerequisites: ITIL® FoundationITIL® Intermediate15 credits collected in ITIL® Intermediate levelMALC examination qualificationIn Total: minimum of 22 ITIL® credits.Training: Not Required.Examination: Not RequiredCertificate: Yes.5. Master Course This stage doesn't have any training material or examination. By this stage, the candidate is expected to be the best among his/her peer group and apply all the frameworks and principles in real-life situations.Prerequisites: ITIL® Expert certificateFive years of experience in leadership or management position.Training: Not AvailableExamination: Rather than an examination, it's more like a collective review of the work. So, no examination.Certificate: Yes. ITIL® StagePrerequisitesTrainingExamCertificatesFoundationNoYESYESIntermediateITIL® FoundationYESYESYESMALC-ITIL® Foundation- 15 credits in IntermediateYESYESYESExpert-  ITIL® Foundation- 15 credits in Intermediate- MALC- Minimum 22 credits in TotalNONOITIL® EXPERTMaster-ITIL® ExpertNODemonstrationITIL® MasterRoles of the jobThe credentials of the ITIL® certifications will surely give your resume a big boost, but your success will solely depend on you. These are factors that help boost career impact:Your professional experience.KnowledgeThe pace at which you absorb ITIL® concepts.The interest you have in IT methods.Following are the roles that you can expect through ITIL® certification -Process CoordinatorExperience required is a minimum of two years.Level: Foundation-level to Intermediate-levelResponsibility: Assure that the administrative actions in a process are conducted as planned.Change coordinator, Incident coordinator, and configuration analyst are few of the coordinator positions possible in ITIL®-based IT service management.Managerial RoleExperience - At least eight years of working experience for a certified ITIL® professional.Level - This is operated at the mid-management level.Responsibility:The role here is to ensure that activities in service management are in accordance with the given processes.He/she will be managing the coordinators under you who will directly report to you.The Manager is accountable for their actions and making sure that the work allocated is executed thoroughly.Release manager, Problem manager, and service desk manager are some of the managerial roles.ITIL® consulting roleExperience - This role of Process Consultant requires experience of ten years.Level - An ITIL® certified professional.Requirement - The candidate also needs to have certain different abilities with Observation skills being the most dominant traits. Also, they need great “Problem-solving’’ abilities.Responsibility - An ITIL® Consultant must have great observation skills as this would allow him/her to notice inconsistencies in processes and immediately plan about optimization. The consultant must enjoy getting to the bottom of  all issues.Their role is to observe every role assigned under them and guide them to execute the process as smoothly as possible.This is among the most highly-paid and respectable posts in the industry.Below are the annual average salaries of the ITIL® certified jobs -Sr. NoRoleAverage salary per annum in USAverage salary per annum in India1Service Delivery Manager$82,795INR 1,366,9822IT Analyst$86,361INR 7,32,6123Asset Manager$88,552INR 5395334IT Project Manager$91,257INR 1,433,4725IT Manager$101,181INR 10820296Engineering program manager$106,280INR 18198807Senior  IT Project Manager$112,899INR 1,818,5608Service Transition$117,000INR 13,34,2739Service Operation$117,000INR 610,864Difference between ITIL® V3 & V4 certification levelsMany students have one common question-- how exactly are the ITIL® V4 and V3 different from each other?ITIL® V3 was introduced in 2007. The version was revised with some changes four years later in 2011. Whereas AXELOS recently announced the completion of the latest version of the ITIL® V4. The first level of the newer version was released early in 2019 and the higher levels are scheduled to release in the second half of the year.The ITIL® 4 is built upon nine guiding principles. These were borrowed from the most contemporary ITIL® Practitioner Exam.The essence was based on:Device for knowledgeConcentrate on contentExplore holisticallyCommence where you areStudy directlyDevelop iterativelyAssociateBe fairKeep it simple.The ITIL® 4 works according to the need of public perception and needs. Because of this, customer feedback and satisfaction is a top priority for the new version.In addition to these principles, the ITIL® V4 has major updates like:Exceptional integration besides other successful ITSM practices, including DevOps, Agile, and LeanA broader focus on the meaning of customer experienceThe superior combination of ITIL® and modern business practicesA community-driven focus to create the framework extra flexible and powerful.Also, there has been an inclusion of ITIL® Foundation and the ITIL® Master exams.ITIL® Managing Professional (MP)It targets IT practitioners working within technology and digital teams across businesses. They are not just limited to the IT departments. This course offers experience and expertise to run successful teams, IT projects, and workflows.ITIL® Strategic Leader (SL)This exam is planned for those who operate with “every digitally equipped assistance.” The objective of this course is to prepare the learner on how to use technology to deliver business procedure. It also explains the role of IT in the process.ITIL® V4’s focus The team developing the latest version includes industry experts, content writers, and specialists from the broader IT industry. This team operates on a global level to address all types of issues that the organizations face at different levels. More than 2000+ members have contributed to the evolution of this version.The focus is on the practical aspects of the industry. The course has been kept as compliant as possible to assist the organizations towards being better developed and integrated service providers.The most crucial change has been noticed in the foundation level of the version. Now the learners will have a strong base with the IT management from the start.Also, not only will this give the students an early advantage towards grasping the concepts but will make them more adaptable towards the end-to-end operating model for the production, outcomes and constant revisions to provide a much-advanced customer experience.The Service Value System (SVS) has also been heavily updated. It now gives a complete end-to-end scenario of what's happening behind the scenes during the business operations. This allows the students to get a better understanding and to contribute more to the process. The updated version has also incorporated concepts from the models like DevOps, Agile and Lean IT.A significant challenge was not to make it completely original from its previous versions as that will create chaos in the organization between the new and the earlier certified professionals. Keeping this in mind, the version has been designed to have better compatibility with the ITIL® V3.So, what happens to the ITIL® V3?The best thing about certifications is that they never get too old, i.e., they do not have an expiration date. So once you have earned the credentials in your resume, it will be valid for a lifetime.Similarly, ITIL® V3 is equally appropriate and efficient as it has a global demand and a reach of thousands of professionals and students. This is the reason why the latest version has been made compatible with the ITIL® V3.The newer version is devised to satisfy the ever-growing needs of the digital environment. It looks forward to simplifying the complicated processes in the IT sector that used to consume a lot of effort as well as time. The results and outcomes of ITIL® will only be visible when they are applied effectively.
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ITIL® certification levels: A comprehensive guide

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ITIL® certification levels: A comprehensive guide

What is ITIL®?

ITIL® is a library, a set of detailed practices for IT service management (ITSM). Earlier known as the Information Technology Infrastructure Library, it aims to deliver IT services concerning the needs of the business. ITIL® frameworks assist the companies in improving their ITSM and providing strong customer service.

Certification Levels

As there is a distinct set of rules to take into account, for the ease of students and organizations, ITIL® certification has been divided into five levels, starting from Foundation to Masters.

The previous version of the ITIL® V3 was divided into 5 classes -

  • Foundation: This is the first-level certification course that teaches the fundamentals and general concepts, terminology, and elements practiced in the ITIL® Lifecycle.
  • Practitioner: This level aims to teach candidates how to adapt and adopt the skills of ITIL® during their daily work life. It is the most recent addition to the levels.
  • Intermediate: This is a more in-depth study of the previous stages. Here, different modules are taken up to teach the various approaches and plans executed by following the framework. This certification is considered as the common ITIL® qualification in many IT sectors.
  • Expert: This certification is considered as the esteemed qualification which depicts skills, expertise and a great understanding of the ITIL® framework.
  • Master level: This is the final stage of the certification, which proves a comprehensive understanding of the principles, procedures and exceptional methods of ITIL®. It also demonstrates the candidate's superior skills. The master’s certified candidate is considered to be the best among others due to their knowledge and expertise.

As the level increases, the depth, value, and requirements of the certifications increase parallelly.

The latest version of the ITIL® V4 is reportedly the most flexible and superior version released till now. The updates are highly valuable because they have been implemented after considering the feedbacks and reviews of 1000s of professionals.

Since the problems are resolved through steps, this increases the credibility of the ITIL® framework and processes exponentially. Also, this version has been designed to be flexible and adaptable as per the ease of the employees and students.

The transition from ITIL® V3 to ITIL® V4

Now, we understand that there are some significant upgrades in ITIL® V4, but the question is, what about those who are currently enrolled in ITIL® V3 or have already passed the previous versions.

For your concerns, AXELOS has addressed the transition issue and the process is rather simple. These are the best options as suggested by AXELOS on how a candidate can move from the older version of ITIL® to ITIL® 4.

  • Foundation course 

For those who have started the certification course and have only reached the current Foundation certification, or have earned up to six additional credits, they are recommended to begin again with the latest version of the ITIL® 4. It's because of the changes that are mentioned, have been revised and upgraded. Therefore, it will be better for them to restart from the beginning as they will be in sync with the current updates.

  • Practitioner Course

Since the student has just begun, if he/she has not collected more than 6 credits, it is advisable to join the ITIL® V4 foundation course and start from scratch. However, if they have collected more than 6 credits, it is advisable to continue with ITIL® V3 only.

  • Intermediate Course 

The situation is rather tricky for those who are completing the intermediate level of the ITIL® V3. Since AXELOS doesn't want students to unnecessarily waste their valuable efforts, if students have collected more than six credits beyond the foundation level, they are advised to continue with their ITIL® V3 journey.

It is also worth noting that the Transition module will not be released until the second half of 2019, so this gives students a fair time to collect their required credits.

  • Expert Certification 

Students who have already achieved a minimum of 17 ITIL® Credits and have attained the level of Expert level will have the choice of practicing the ITIL® 4 Managing Professional (MP) Transition module when it is published.

This will enable them to join the stage of ITIL® Managing Professional (MP). Following this, all they need to do is to join the ITIL® Leader Digital & Strategy module. It will assist them in achieving the ITIL® Strategic Leader (SL) designation. By this stage, they will be eligible to apply for the ultimate level of ITIL® Master.

Below are the required credits and details on the transition path -

ITIL® V3 Certification Level

The Path for transition to V4
ITIL® V3 Foundation

Simply take the ITIL® V4 Foundation to transition to the new ITIL® certification.
ITIL® V3 Practitioner
  1. Take ITIL® V4 Foundation and further modules in the area of interest to become ITIL® specialist or strategist

  2. Continue with ITIL® V3 certification until you gather 17 credits and become eligible to take ITIL® MP level

ITIL® V3 Intermediate

Continue collecting credits from ITIL® V3 certification and when credits reach 17, you can give ITIL® MP module

ITIL® V3 Expert

Simply take ITIL® V4 MP module to transition to new Expert level of ITIL® V4

What is the ITIL® certification path level?

Eligibility

Many candidates have a doubt on what the eligibility criteria for the ITIL® certification is. Before proceeding to the certification path, let's get this doubt cleared. There are no prerequisites required for taking the certification course. It's just suggested that the candidate should have some past experience in the IT sector.

Now that we are clear with the most basic doubt, let's continue towards the path of certification.

Certification Path

This section will deal with the journey to the Certification Path. Throughout the certification course, there’s a certain number of ITIL® Credits awarded when you clear the levels through examination. These credits are the key to unlock the next level of certification or training.

1. Foundation Course - 

As discussed earlier, it is the introductory course to the ITIL® Service Management.

  • Training: Required.
  • Prerequisites: Not Required
  • Examination: Yes, Required
  • Awards: 2 ITIL® credits
  • Certificate: Yes.

2. Intermediate Course -

The next step after Foundation course. It consists of two streams and within those two streams are various modules.

  • Prerequisites: ITIL® Foundation Certificate.
  • Training: Yes, required
  • Examination: Yes. The credits earned after the examination will be presented in braces for every module.
  • Certificate: Yes, for each module

Service Lifecycle stream modules: 

  • Service Design - 3 credits
  • Service Strategy - 3 credits
  • Service Operation - 3 credits
  • Service Transition - 3 credits    
  • Continual Service Improvement - 3 credits

Service Capability stream modules: 

  • Release, Control, and Validation - 4 credits
  • Service Offerings and Agreements - 4 credits
  • Planning, Protection, and Optimization - 4 credits
  • Operational Support, and Analysis - 4 credits

3. Managing Across Service Lifecycle – MALC

The conclusive segment in the qualification system before obtaining the esteemed certification of Expert is the stage called - MALC.

  • Prerequisites: ITIL® Foundation. 15 credits (Intermediate level) + 2 credits. Hence, 17 credits in total.
  • Training: Yes, required.
  • Examination: Yes
  • Awards5 ITIL® credits
  • Certificate: Yes

4. Expert Course 

The highly valued certification which is the proof of superior knowledge and expertise.

  • Prerequisites: 
    • ITIL® Foundation
    • ITIL® Intermediate
    • 15 credits collected in ITIL® Intermediate level
    • MALC examination qualification
  • In Total: minimum of 22 ITIL® credits.
  • Training: Not Required.
  • Examination: Not Required
  • Certificate: Yes.

5. Master Course 

This stage doesn't have any training material or examination. By this stage, the candidate is expected to be the best among his/her peer group and apply all the frameworks and principles in real-life situations.

  • Prerequisites: 
    • ITIL® Expert certificate
    • Five years of experience in leadership or management position.
  • Training: Not Available
  • Examination: Rather than an examination, it's more like a collective review of the work. So, no examination.
  • Certificate: Yes.
 ITIL® StagePrerequisites

TrainingExamCertificates
Foundation
NoYESYES
Intermediate
ITIL® FoundationYESYESYES
MALC-ITIL® Foundation
- 15 credits in Intermediate
YESYESYES
Expert-  ITIL® Foundation
- 15 credits in Intermediate
- MALC
- Minimum 22 credits in Total
NONOITIL® EXPERT
Master

-ITIL® Expert
NODemonstrationITIL® Master

Roles of the jobITIL Roles of the job

The credentials of the ITIL® certifications will surely give your resume a big boost, but your success will solely depend on you. These are factors that help boost career impact:

  • Your professional experience.
  • Knowledge
  • The pace at which you absorb ITIL® concepts.
  • The interest you have in IT methods.

Following are the roles that you can expect through ITIL® certification -

  • Process Coordinator

    • Experience required is a minimum of two years.
    • Level: Foundation-level to Intermediate-level
    • Responsibility: Assure that the administrative actions in a process are conducted as planned.
    • Change coordinator, Incident coordinator, and configuration analyst are few of the coordinator positions possible in ITIL®-based IT service management.
  • Managerial Role

    • Experience - At least eight years of working experience for a certified ITIL® professional.
    • Level - This is operated at the mid-management level.
    • Responsibility:
      • The role here is to ensure that activities in service management are in accordance with the given processes.
      • He/she will be managing the coordinators under you who will directly report to you.
      • The Manager is accountable for their actions and making sure that the work allocated is executed thoroughly.
    • Release manager, Problem manager, and service desk manager are some of the managerial roles.
  • ITIL® consulting role

    • Experience - This role of Process Consultant requires experience of ten years.
    • Level - An ITIL® certified professional.
    • Requirement - The candidate also needs to have certain different abilities with Observation skills being the most dominant traits. Also, they need great “Problem-solving’’ abilities.
    • Responsibility - 
      • An ITIL® Consultant must have great observation skills as this would allow him/her to notice inconsistencies in processes and immediately plan about optimization. The consultant must enjoy getting to the bottom of  all issues.
      • Their role is to observe every role assigned under them and guide them to execute the process as smoothly as possible.
      • This is among the most highly-paid and respectable posts in the industry.

Below are the annual average salaries of the ITIL® certified jobs -

Sr. NoRole

Average salary per annum in USAverage salary per annum in India
1Service Delivery Manager
$82,795INR 1,366,982
2IT Analyst
$86,361INR 7,32,612
3Asset Manager
$88,552INR 539533
4IT Project Manager
$91,257INR 1,433,472
5IT Manager
$101,181INR 1082029
6Engineering program manager
$106,280INR 1819880
7Senior  IT Project Manager
$112,899INR 1,818,560
8Service Transition
$117,000INR 13,34,273
9Service Operation
$117,000INR 610,864

Difference between ITIL® V3 & V4 certification levels

Many students have one common question-- how exactly are the ITIL® V4 and V3 different from each other?

ITIL® V3 was introduced in 2007. The version was revised with some changes four years later in 2011. Whereas AXELOS recently announced the completion of the latest version of the ITIL® V4. The first level of the newer version was released early in 2019 and the higher levels are scheduled to release in the second half of the year.

The ITIL® 4 is built upon nine guiding principles. These were borrowed from the most contemporary ITIL® Practitioner Exam.

guiding principles to ITIL Certification

The essence was based on:

  1. Device for knowledge
  2. Concentrate on content
  3. Explore holistically
  4. Commence where you are
  5. Study directly
  6. Develop iteratively
  7. Associate
  8. Be fair
  9. Keep it simple.

The ITIL® 4 works according to the need of public perception and needs. Because of this, customer feedback and satisfaction is a top priority for the new version.

In addition to these principles, the ITIL® V4 has major updates like:

  • Exceptional integration besides other successful ITSM practices, including DevOps, Agile, and Lean
  • A broader focus on the meaning of customer experience
  • The superior combination of ITIL® and modern business practices
  • A community-driven focus to create the framework extra flexible and powerful.

Also, there has been an inclusion of ITIL® Foundation and the ITIL® Master exams.

ITIL® Managing Professional (MP)

It targets IT practitioners working within technology and digital teams across businesses. They are not just limited to the IT departments. This course offers experience and expertise to run successful teams, IT projects, and workflows.

ITIL® Strategic Leader (SL)

This exam is planned for those who operate with “every digitally equipped assistance.” The objective of this course is to prepare the learner on how to use technology to deliver business procedure. It also explains the role of IT in the process.

ITIL® V4’s focus 

The team developing the latest version includes industry experts, content writers, and specialists from the broader IT industry. This team operates on a global level to address all types of issues that the organizations face at different levels. More than 2000+ members have contributed to the evolution of this version.

The focus is on the practical aspects of the industry. The course has been kept as compliant as possible to assist the organizations towards being better developed and integrated service providers.

The most crucial change has been noticed in the foundation level of the version. Now the learners will have a strong base with the IT management from the start.

Also, not only will this give the students an early advantage towards grasping the concepts but will make them more adaptable towards the end-to-end operating model for the production, outcomes and constant revisions to provide a much-advanced customer experience.

The Service Value System (SVS) has also been heavily updated. It now gives a complete end-to-end scenario of what's happening behind the scenes during the business operations. This allows the students to get a better understanding and to contribute more to the process. The updated version has also incorporated concepts from the models like DevOps, Agile and Lean IT.

A significant challenge was not to make it completely original from its previous versions as that will create chaos in the organization between the new and the earlier certified professionals. Keeping this in mind, the version has been designed to have better compatibility with the ITIL® V3.

So, what happens to the ITIL® V3?

The best thing about certifications is that they never get too old, i.e., they do not have an expiration date. So once you have earned the credentials in your resume, it will be valid for a lifetime.

Similarly, ITIL® V3 is equally appropriate and efficient as it has a global demand and a reach of thousands of professionals and students. This is the reason why the latest version has been made compatible with the ITIL® V3.

The newer version is devised to satisfy the ever-growing needs of the digital environment. It looks forward to simplifying the complicated processes in the IT sector that used to consume a lot of effort as well as time. The results and outcomes of ITIL® will only be visible when they are applied effectively.

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Everything You Need To Know About ITIL®

What is ITIL®?Today, the worlds of business and technology have overlapped each other and are linked inextricably. To thrive and to remain competitive, companies need to bring IT services in considerable focus. The transition of a company’s objectives and capabilities to IT can be an overwhelming process. To ease this transition and to select, plan, deliver and maintain a certain standard in IT services within the organisation, a standardised framework called the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) is designed.The ITIL® ensures that the implementation of IT services for any business has efficiency and predictable service deliverability at its core. The framework makes sure that the IT services department in any organisation is an active business partner and not just a backend service provider.  The reason why ITIL® is gaining such importance and focus in the business world is that without it, the resources spent on designing and developing an IT service management (ITSM) process would be futile, which would, in turn, make the business less competitive, susceptible to losses in money and customers and less efficient.ITIL® HistoryThe growing discrepancies in processes, deployments and inconsistent IT services on account of the geographical decentralisation of data centers in the 1980s led to the need for ITIL®.Released as a series of books in 1989 by The United Kingdom's Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA), ITIL® Version one, i.e., ITIL® V1 was their response to a need to recognise IT as an essential service and the need to apply it consistently across the organisation.ITIL® consists of various levels and modules. It aims to cover comprehensively everything from service strategies to continuous improvement which would ultimately help practitioners to adopt the IT services for their organisation and be prepared for changes down the line.ITIL® UpdatesPost-1989, the ITIL® has been upgraded to reflect the changes in the business world and is now a highly renowned and recommended practice with multiple thousands of practitioners getting certified and implementing it.Post launch, the first major change in ITIL® came in 2000-2001 with the release of ITIL® V2. This version focused on making the entire framework more accessible and less formidable for the candidates. It compiled the entire framework into nine sets of related elements. This version was followed by the ITIL® V3 in 2007 which was a compact and well-designed framework of 26 functions that were combined into five volumes.  This version was built to inculcate the concept of service lifecycle structure. Few changes were introduced to V3 which was launched in 2011 as ITIL® V3 2011. In 2019, the latest version, ITIL® V4, is all set for launch with a focus on the ITIL® service value system and upgrading the credit system.ITIL® PublicationsThe framework of ITIL® V3 encompasses five core publications which aim to cover the entire lifecycle of ITSM. They are reviewed and updated regularly to reflect the advancements made in IT technology. The five core publications are:ITIL® Service Strategy: This publication aims to identify and describe the goals of the business and the objectives of the IT services and align them to customer requirements.ITIL® Service Design: Based on the strategy defined in the previous publication, this publication aims at outlining the IT architecture, policies, and procedure as well as documentation.ITIL® Service Transition: This is an important publication which focuses on the change management and practices to be followed for releasing each policy/service change. It mainly aims to guide the transition and anticipated interruptions.ITIL® Service Operation: This is the actual working, functioning and operating manual in the ITIL® framework. The operation help in managing IT services regularly.ITIL® Continual Service Improvement: This publication is futurist in its outlook as it aims to guide the organisation through improvements and updates within the ITIL® framework.  As is evident, the modules cover everything from the beginning, i.e., identifying the customer’s needs to designing and implementation and in the end, monitoring and improving the ITSM process.ITIL® Modules The entire ITIL® process is a module based framework. The certification, for example, under ITIL® v4 has been broken down into ITIL® Foundation and the ITIL® Master exams. Post the ITIL® Foundation, the course is further split into two modules: ITIL® Managing Professional (MP) and ITIL® Strategic Leader (SL), which the candidate need to complete in order to progress further.  ITIL® MP has the following modules:ITIL® Specialist – Create, Deliver and SupportITIL® Specialist – Drive Stakeholder ValueITIL® Specialist – High Velocity ITITIL® Strategist – Direct, Plan & ImproveITIL® SL, on the other hand, has the following modules:ITIL® Strategist – Direct, Plan & ImproveITIL® Leader – Digital & IT StrategyNine ITIL® Principles & ITIL® ModulesReleased in 2019, ITIL® V4 has the same focus as its predecessors. Although, it does have an updated framework which also represents and accommodates modern technologies and software. The program has illustrated nine guiding principles with an aim to provide for change management within an organisation, organisation communication, measurement, and metrics. These nine principles include:Focus on valueHere, ITIL® encourages the professional to define the service output in a manner that captures the needs of the customer.Design for experienceThe paramount thing here, as per ITIL®, is to understand the context within which the service offered will be consumed by the customers.Start where you areThis principle pushes the candidate to collect information and understand the customer’s current pattern of consumption and how the services offered under ITIL® will support it.Work holisticallyBy understanding the entire value chain of the customer, ITIL® ensures that the services offered do not disrupt that value chain but make an active contribution to it.Progress iterativelyITIL®, while being implemented, must start with the minimally viable option and then progress from there based on an understanding of the priorities of the customer’s needs and expectations.Observe directlyITIL® requires that the customers including users and sponsors are heard out and observed regularly. Candidates must observe how the service is delivered, executed and consumed.Be transparentIn the realm of ITIL®, sharing is encouraged: of ideas, thoughts, failures, concerns as well as improvements made.CollaborateITIL® requires the active involvement of all stakeholders from customers, users to suppliers.Keep it simpleIt is imperative that any implementation of ITIL® uses simple words which are easy to understand to ensure clear communication.ITIL® principles and modules when systematically followed can help an organisation manage as well as mitigate risks better, save on IT support costs, create a thriving ecosystem which ensures growth, scale, change and strengthens the organisation’s relationship with their end users i.e the customers.What are ITIL® processes & frameworks?The framework of ITIL® V3 is made up of five parts: service strategy, service design, service transition, service operation, and continual service improvement. These sections comprise of:Strategy GenerationFinancial managementDemand managementService Portfolio managementITIL® Service DesignThe design of an IT service which has architectures, processes, policies and documentation is laid out in this section to address the requirements of the business requirement. Seven processes are included in Service Design:Service Catalog ManagementService Level ManagementAvailability ManagementCapacity ManagementIT Service Continuity ManagementInformation Security ManagementSupplier ManagementITIL® Service TransitionThis stage is to make sure that that the current state of service is not ignored when an organization is going through change. ITIL® Service Transition includes seven processes which are:Transition Planning and SupportChange ManagementService Asset and Configuration ManagementRelease and Deployment ManagementService Validation and TestingEvaluationKnowledge ManagementITIL® Service OperationITIL® Service Operation is essential to make sure the organisation meets the requirements of the customer. It comprises of various functions to ensure a smooth flow of everyday tasks related to planning, operations, monitoring, and related services. Service Operation includes five processes:Event ManagementIncident ManagementRequest FulfillmentProblem ManagementAccess ManagementITIL® Continual Service ImprovementIn this stage of ITIL®, stringent quality checks are required to ensure the service process is improved consistently. There are three processes in this stage of Continual Service Improvement:The 7 improvement processService MeasurementService ReportingBest practicesITIL® guidelines and best practices' primary aim is to align IT department actions as well as expenses to the needs of the business and change them as the company grows and shifts direction.ITIL® ensures support to the organisations and individuals as they endeavour to achieve optimal value from their investment in IT and digital technologies and services. It creates a sense of direction for the service provider to create a clear capability model and adjust its business strategy with customer needs.As a professionally recognised international certification scheme, ITIL® ensures comprehensive and pragmatic guidance which helps in establishing a service management system. Its best practices start from the basics such as defining a glossary of common terms which business can use as they adopt IT-enabled services into their practices.ITIL® ObjectivesITIL®, in its objective, contributes immense value to the organisation which adopts its framework. It not only assures quality, increased availability, reduction in costs and better cost-benefit relationship but also a tremendous improvement in effectiveness in meeting requirements of a class, growth in flexibility and making the principle of adopting and adapting possible.ITIL® helps organisations in achieving the following objectives:Reduction in IT costsImprovement in qualityReduction in riskImprovement in decision makingIncrement in productivityOrganisation-wide transparency and effective communication.Implementing a culture of adopting a practical approach to service managementAdoption of a common framework of practicesITIL® FundamentalsWhether it is the private or public sector, internal or external services providers, small, medium or large organisations, ITIL® continues to remain useful, relevant and evolving in every technical environment. There are some ITIL® fundamentals which are a primary reason why organisations must adopt it to ensure that their needs of IT and their customers are met.These fundamentals include:Best Practices: ITIL® is a representation of the best practices, experiences, learning, and thoughts of the world’s best-in-class service providers.Continuous Evolvement: The success of ITIL® can easily be credited to its fundamental principle of developing continually. This ensures that organisations are enabled to derive and deliver benefits, get assured returns on investment and sustainable success.Adapt and Adopt:  ITIL® is adapted to enable organisations in:Ensuring early adoption of a standard approach towards service management throughout the organisation and its processes.Changing the culture of the organisation to support the sustainable and prosperous achievements of goals, enabled by IT.Optimising and reducing costs.Improving customer interaction as well as the relationship.Coordinating across the value chain of the delivery of goods and services.What is ITIL® Certification?Here is a brief overview of the ITIL® Certification Program.ITIL® serves as the primary ITSM framework for any organisation. As a person in IT, getting these certificates is essential, as they add to their skillset. Many IT professionals in the industry consider the ITIL® certifications as the Holy Bible to IT support. ITIL® V3 utilises a credit system for all its levels from the Foundation through Master levels. Each certification level earns a certain number of credits. After obtaining the requisite number of credits, the individual will take the ITIL® Master certification. In ITIL® V3, a total of 22 credits are required by a professional, if they are to earn the ITIL® Expert certification. The benefits of the ITIL® certification program include:Better preparedness with an in-depth knowledge of ITIL® frameworks which enables you to work betterEnsures professional advancement and better payHelps you speak the language of IT professionalsExpanded horizons and a vision for the bigger pictureITIL® certification is a modular programme, directed towards learning the ITIL® framework and comprises of a series of qualifications which are focused on different aspects of the ITIL® framework and its implementation.The certification enfolds in a tiered structure which ensures that candidates have flexibility and progress through the depths of ITIL® in a sequential manner.Recently, on the 18th of February, 2019, ITIL® 4 certifications starting with a foundation course have been released. The remaining certifications are due for release in the second half of 2019.Under the ITIL® V3, the certifications had five levels which included:FoundationPractitionerIntermediateExpertITIL® training MasterThis system has evolved to the following under V4:FoundationManaging ProfessionalStrategic LeaderMasterIt is important to note that the ITIL® system uses a credit system right from the Foundation level through the Expert levels with each certification amounting to a certain number of credits. The following chart illustrates the current ITIL® V3® credit system:Sr. NoLevel of ITIL® certificationNo. of credits awarded1ITIL® Foundation22ITIL® Practitioner33ITIL® IntermediateLifecycle ModuleService Strategy3Service Design3Service Transition3Service Operation3Continual Service Improvement3Capability ModuleOperational Support and Analysis4Planning, Protection, and Optimization4Release, Control, and Validation4Service Offerings and Agreements44Managing across the lifecycle55ITIL® ExpertITIL® Certification LevelsUnder the ITIL® V3 certification, levels are under:1. FoundationThis is the first level in the ITIL® certifications. It focuses on ensuring that the candidate is well versed with standard terminology and methodology. They will get the knowledge required to not only support but also deliver ITIL® related services.2. PractitionerThe Practitioner level is the second level of the ITIL® certification. In this level, the candidates are encouraged to improve their ability to adopt and adapt ITIL® for an organization.3. Intermediate This is the third level of the ITIL® certification. It consists of two categories or modules of certification: Service Lifecycle and Service Capability.The Service Lifecycle modules are:Service Strategy (SS)Service Design (SD)Service Transition (ST)Service Operation (SO)Continual Service Improvement (CSI)The Service Capability modules are:Operational Support and Analysis (OSA)Planning, Protection, and Optimization (PPO)Release, Control, and Validation (RCV)Service Offerings and Agreements (SOA)In the Service Lifecycle module, a lot of focus is given to management across several ITIL® processes. On the other hand, the module of Service Capability focuses on specialized as well as process-level knowledge within ITIL® processes.4. ExpertITIL® Expert certification is the fourth level of the ITIL® certification, and it is also delivered in modular form. This certification can be taken only by those candidates who have cleared the previous levels to ensure that they the requisite detailed knowledge and skills to clearly understand the entire system of ITIL®.5. MasterThe fifth level of the ITIL® certification is the ITIL® Master Level certification. This level focuses on strengthening and widening the mastery of the practical application of ITIL® in a variety of settings. The professionals working on ITIL® directly are usually involved in planning, operations, and management of ITSM. Through this certification, they obtain the skills to demonstrate their knowledge.Here are some details on the levels of certifications under ITIL® V4 :1. ITIL® Foundation Certification -  IT Service ManagementThe ITIL® 4 Foundation certification is designed as an introduction to ITIL® 4, and it enables candidates to look at ITSM as an end-to-end operating model for creating, delivering and continuously improving tech-enabled products and services. It helps those individuals who require a basic knowledge of the ITIL® framework. It also helps those who wish to understand how ITIL® as a framework can be used to enhance ITSM and those IT professionals working within an organisation that has adopted ITIL®.2. ITIL® Managing Professional - ITIL® MPITIL® MP has four modules within itself, adding value of ITIL® Foundation, which are:ITIL® Specialist Create, Deliver and SupportITIL® Specialist Drive Stakeholder ValueITIL® Specialist High Velocity ITITIL® Strategist Direct Plan and ImproveITIL® MP targets those IT practitioners who work within technology and digital teams across organisations.  3. ITIL® Strategic Leader - ITIL® SLWithin ITIL® SL, two modules embody the next stage of ITIL® evolution. The two modules are:ITIL® Strategist Direct Plan and ImproveITIL® Leader Digital and IT StrategyThis set is perfect for those who understand how IT services influence business strategy.4. ITIL® Master Certificate - ITSMITIL® Master Certificate helps the person justify and explain a range of knowledge, principles, methods, and techniques of ITIL® Framework. It requires one to have extensive practical experience with ITIL® and demonstrative knowledge of the prospect.To be eligible for the ITIL® Master certification, you must:Be  ITIL® Expert certifiedHave experience in IT services management for five years at least in leadership, management or higher management position.How much does ITIL® certification cost?Currently, ITIL® certifications are under Axelos. An individual can start the course by either using a hardcopy, PDF, ePublication or via an online subscription which can be availed directly from Axelos. While this is the primary cost, the second is the training cost. For each level of the course, there is a different cost associated. The curriculum leading to the initial certificate usually runs for two days and the courses commencing to higher certifications can run for a week or more.There is an additional cost of re-engineering a few of the processes to enable ITIL® frameworks and enable them to comply with ITIL® guidelines. An additional cost would be the investment in the ITIL® study guide and ITIL® practice exam which is set to be between $30 to $50 respectively. Therefore, there is no fixed cost for gaining the ITIL® certification. Axelos has tied up with an institution called  Accredited Training Organisation (ATO) where one can take ITIL® training.What are ITIL® complementary certifications?Axelos, apart from the five levels of ITIL® certifications, also offers complementary courses under the ITIL® credit system which are known as ITIL® complementary certifications. A total of 6 credits can be earned through these additional courses. It is critical to ensure that there is no overlap between the modules at different levels, as the percentage of overlap that Axelos segregates can be divided into three categories: low, moderate and high. The candidate should focus on staying in the ‘low overlap’ zone to ensure that they earn the right credits. Axelos details the course on its website and gives a hawk-eye view of its benefit.Who should do ITIL® certification?ITIL® certification is acquired via classroom study and virtual IT coaching which can be supplemented with self-study. An ITIL® certification represents that the person who has it has the requisite knowledge and skills related to ITIL® structure and terminology. It also describes that he has a working knowledge of the core principles and subject areas relating to IT, which is the primary use of ITIL® technology in the management of business services. The certification is helpful for:People who have the basic knowledge of ITIL® and wish to utilise it towards ensuring better control of service operation in a business situation.IT professionals who want positive changes in the efficiency of a business organisation such as cost reduction.Following professionals are recommended to take the ITIL® course:IT ManagersIT DirectorsQuality AnalystsIT Service ManagersSupport Professionals and EngineersService Support EngineersDatabase AdministratorsOperations ManagersOwners of Business ProcessesWhat is ITIL® Foundation?The foundation course will act as an introduction to ITIL® 4, and it will introduce candidates to ITSM as an end-to-end operating model with a focus on creating, delivering, and improving IT-enabled products and services.The certification aims to help:People who require a fundamental understanding of the ITIL® framework.Those who wish to learn how ITIL® can be useful in enhancing the IT service management.IT professionals or others who are working within an organisation that has adopted ITIL®.However, the ITIL® V4 foundation certification is helpful to anyone who has an interest in IT service management. ITIL® V4 Foundation candidates, at the end of the certificate course, will have an understanding of the following:A thorough grasp of how to facilitate the co-creation of value for customers as well as other stakeholders via products and services.Exposure to the guiding principles of ITIL® V4.A holistic approach towards the four dimensions of Service Management.Basic terminologies such as Agile, Lean, DevOps and their importance.The significance of ITIL® practices and their value to your business.Are there any Versions in ITIL® Foundation?ITIL® has seen 4 versions till date. Each of the versions has had the same motive of helping the candidate achieve alignment between the IT systems with the business strategies.Version 1 was launched with more than 30 volumes each covering a specific practice within ITSM. It aimed at establishing a model of controlling and managing business operations using IT.In the year 2000-2001, in order to make ITIL® more accessible as well as affordable, a new version, ITIL® V2 endeavoured to consolidate the publications into nine sets which focus on logic and were grouped in a manner that matched different aspects of IT management and services.Under ITIL® V3, the foundation level was introduced to candidates with the aim of exposing them to the basic concepts, key elements and common terminologies under ITIL®.The primary purpose has not changed under the ITIL® V4, and their essential features remain the same. The updated version of ITIL® V4 merely includes advanced material on the additional best practices.  ITIL® V4 aims to address the two major complains of the ITIL® :Its relationship with the ITSM community.Its failure to update itself with the latest trends in IT operations and software development.How ITIL® certification helps business?ITIL® certification has now become essential for any business which uses digital services daily and aspires to have a flawless ITSM. An ITIL® certification helps with installing good ITSM practices within the organisation. This certification covers the whole development lifecycle of IT, all the way from recognising requirements of IT and business to maintaining and delivering the levels of service in a state of focused review and improvement. This holistic approach enhances the overall customer experience and integration of work.To help understand the nuances better, let us explore ITIL® V3 Foundation Vs. ITIL® V4 Foundation.ITIL® V3, which is also popularly referred to as ITIL® 2011, was the latest version before the upgrade to ITIL® V4. The new version introduced the process of the Business Relationship Management (BRM) process but other than that, most of the other elements remain the same.  An important change was that it was easier to read and many of the inconsistencies were edited out. ITIL® V4 uses newer techniques to align IT with a more evolved level of efficiency and effectiveness. It is now possible to align ITIL® with other existing methods such as IT4IT, Agile, DevOps, and Lean.Even with ITIL® V4, the essential elements of ITIL® V3 remain the same. ITIL® V4 just ensures the inclusion of additional best practices and easier integration.ITIL® V4 encourages lesser siloes, more collaboration and encourages communication across the whole organization with the integration of Agile, Lean and DevOps into ITSM strategies. It is made to be more flexible and customizable than ITIL® V3 i.e. more holistic.By investing in a training course and implementing ITIL®, you can expect the following things:Enhanced understanding of the customers which aid in delivering better services, long term relationships, and a sound reputation.A developer guide on predicting and reacting to customer service engagement, complaints, and experience.Increased productivity and better management of resources by focusing on the cost-benefit analysis.Risk mitigation and management.Stabilized environment for better alignment of IT and other divisions of your business.Reduced incidences of service failures.A growth in opportunities to network and collaborate with similar business models.Enhanced value of the organisation’s service portfolio.Agile adaptation to new technologies and comply faster to changing needs of the digital worldDirect rise in chances of an improved bottom line in your revenue statements.Thus, through this, it is clear that ITIL® is almost inevitable for business and must be implemented within organisations who wish to keep evolving with the times and achieve their ever-changing goals with the help of IT.To wrap it up, ITIL® is not just a straightforward skills course in IT. It equips the candidate with the requisite resources to apply the knowledge gained to the larger scope of their organization and align with business practices. This means that the candidate would have a practical hold over the best practices, especially when addressing all facets of IT management.
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Everything You Need To Know About ITIL®

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How an IT Proposal Can Be Like a Reality TV Show

If you’ve ever watched reality TV shows, then you realize pretty quickly that this 42 minutes of entertainment is really just an obstacle course of challenges that are contrived to be literally and figuratively impossible to both the viewer and the contest participant. In other words, seeing others struggle and strive through the impossible while accidentally burning themselves, getting voted off the island, or getting criticized by a snarky British judge is called “good television”. I lived such a reality show experience but it wasn't glamorous or televised, there were no commercial breaks, there were no saves, and definitely no promise of marrying a gorgeous bachelorette at the end of it. My reality show was the competitive world of IT proposals.I was a project manager in the sales organization of a giant IT company. My challenge was that I received a new team every 30-60 days to work on a major proposal. I usually had no idea what the proposal was for at the start; I could not choose my teams, because they were always made up of those available at the time; and everyone’s skill-level varied so widely that I could have a veteran solution engineer working with a pricing analyst who was fresh out of college. There were a million moving parts, each proposal had corporate visibility, and they were valued in the millions or billions of dollars - no pressure! The gauntlet of corporate reviews took more time than it did to write the proposal itself, and all proposals were judged by a customer panel that decided who the winner was.One of the biggest challenges in IT proposal writing is that until the contract is awarded, it is never clear whether all of your effort was right or in vain. So, even if we had the perfect proposal we could still lose.Six rules: To turn up people into well-oiled machineGiven the absurdity of all this, I had to develop a method that would allow us to survive. I established six rules that allowed me to unify a huddled mass of people into a well-oiled machine that delivered these proposals on time, every time. And those rules are as follows:1. Have a clearly defined end-in-mind/goal2. Follow a schedule3. Have dedicated roles for every task4. Have clearly-communicated instructions and requirements5. Remove project blockades6. Treat team members as human beings and not resources1. Have a clearly defined end-in-mind/goalThe end-in-mind is the final deliverable, the final destination; and the “why” behind the proposals altogether. Many proposals lose because they focus on the mechanics of getting the proposal done, instead of providing a compelling vision of what the customer (and the proposal team) is actually trying to achieve. Understanding the end-in-mind is paramount. It drives schedule, cost, resources, and tells you when you’ve arrived. After all, how will you know when you’ve arrived unless you know where the end is?2. Follow a scheduleAmerican Football Coach, John Madden once said “even multi-million dollar athletes need to know what they need to be doing and when.”When you have a deadline, there are always two paths to get there - either through planning or procrastination. I chose the path of planning. While responding to last-minute deadlines can be thrilling, as a chronic habit it can burn you out quickly. For me, planning created a more balanced proposal experience, people were happier because they knew what they needed to do by when, and often we were finished well before the deadline.3. Have dedicated roles for every taskProposals of any importance are never done in a vacuum, and involve a variety of resources and management. In a reality TV show, these are your characters, actors, players, and contestants. At the beginning of each proposal, I established each person’s specific role. It is vital that the team understands why each person is there, and values one another's perspective.  4. Have clearly-communicated instructions and requirementsEvery successful proposal depends on rigorous communication. Communication is often downplayed as a soft skill, but it is actually one of the most critical factors of any project. As you already know, many projects that fail do so because of some level of poor communication.5. Remove project blockadesBad news doesn't get better with age, and on complex proposals issues are inevitable. Whether it’s unavailable resources, a complex multi-vendor solution, or your price is 3 million too high, you need someone to get obstacles out of your way. Sometimes that’s you, but sometimes it may be an empowered project champion. I needed a plan for dealing with issues early, otherwise they could sink my proposal at the end.6. Treat team members as human beings and not resources -The final rule was human connection. The moment my project teams saw each other as human beings, rather than as resources, we connected in a more personal way, and once we had that we were unstoppable.We succeeded because we had a clear vision of the end in mind, the roadmap to get there, a clear understanding of the value of diverse roles and viewpoints, open communication, proactive issues-handling, and the human touch.    By the way, all of this assumed that the proposal was approved, funded, resourced, and actually known to the management. If not, that would have been a whole different reality TV show altogether - I think that would have been a comedy.
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How an IT Proposal Can Be Like a Reality TV Show

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What is ITIL® V3?

Lack of standardised practices in the IT sector created a discordant environment for services, as their efficiency was considerably low and error rates were high as compared to current standards. These irregularities prompted the UK government to envision a set of guidelines for every IT Service organisation to follow. These guidelines, it was hoped, would help not only government organisations but private ones as well.Therefore, in the 1980s, the UK government, in a bid to increase efficiency and standardise IT processes, created a framework with libraries from around the globe. These multiple libraries were concentrated into seven volumes in ITIL® V2 and eventually five volumes in ITIL® V3. Each volume/certification focuses on a specific part of ITSM.What is ITIL® V3?ITIL® V3 focuses on business needs and calibrates the services according to them. Its other main purpose is also to continuously improve the services while reducing the costs at the same time. Due to ITIL® V3’s ability to smoothly combine business expertise with IT processes, which maximises customer satisfaction, it is adding value to millions of people and businesses around the world.Its principal purpose is to enable IT professionals to be business service partners as well. It aims to, therefore, combine the business aspect of ITSM - by catering to business and customer requirements - with the professional expertise of the IT industry.Brought to the public arena in 2007, ITIL® V3 was upgraded and relaunched in 2011 by AXELOS - in collaboration with Her Majesty’s Cabinet Office and Capita PLC as 2011 ITIL® V3. This version included strategic elements which aligned the modern ITSM processes to current business needs.There are three major ITIL® V3 Fundamentals which we will discuss now.ITIL® V3 Incident Management: It is not unusual that services get disrupted within an organisation, but what’s essential is to protect productivity when it happens. ITIL® V3 Incident management is a process which lays down the best set of practices in the industry to effectively handle an incident without much downtime and also ensuring smooth business productivity.ITIL® V3 Change Management: Existing solutions/applications need to be upgraded to keep up with modern technological advancements as well as business needs. It, therefore, becomes essential that such changes do not directly or indirectly affect productivity. ITIL® V3 Change Management focuses on avoiding downtimes by handling, prioritising, and rolling out the required changes.ITIL® V3 Problem Management: Many times, we start getting similar kind of incidents. This is the indication to club all of them into a single problem. The problem aims to provide an RCA (Root cause analysis) of the issue and until then, to also provide a workaround. ITIL® V3 Problem Management helps in managing such problems and avoiding major issues. It also maintains a Known Error Database (KEDB) whose solution is unknown.ITIL® examsITIL® V3 contains five sections as part of the IT service lifecycle, and each section includes multiple processes. ITIL® offers flexibility to an organisation in the form of freedom to adopt any or all of the processes from a particular section. ITIL® is a collection of e-books. Its examinations were earlier administered by EXIN and ISEB, both of which are independent bodies. Both of these bodies gave their certification according to your location.The two independent bodies formed an alliance during late 2006 to further ITSM. Currently, all exams and certificates are being administered by Accredited Training Organisations (ATOs). These accreditations are themselves administered by Strategic Examination Institutes. These, in turn, need to be accredited directly by AXELOS which enables them to offer certification to the ATOs.Benefits of implementing ITIL® in an organisationITIL® powers a well-run IT organisation that not only works efficiently but also keeps optimising the services regularly to provide greater customer experience. Some of the key benefits of implementing ITIL® in an IT organisation as well as businesses are as follows:Cost-effective runIncreased efficiency and productivityIncreased customer satisfactionProvision of comprehensive guidance and standards to followLesser downtime during a service disruptionMinimal service disruptionsEasily manageable incidentsAn easily scaling and changing environmentSome of the examples of accessible services and applications designed with ITIL® and ITSM are:SamanageInvGate Service DeskManageEngine ServiceDesk PlusVision HelpDeskGiants like Disney and Sony are prime examples of how one can manage services within a big organisation. Learners can easily take up these case studies to understand the ground situation in the industry. All in all, ITIL® provides a streamlined framework which helps in managing risks, reducing costs while monitoring day to day activities, and finally improvising the course through learning.What are the five sections of the ITIL® V3 Framework?The ITIL® Framework has five sections which have evolved over time to reflect the needs of the business and the IT environment. Briefly, this evolution can be described as under: The first release of ITIL®, released by the UK government to standardise the IT standards, boasted of multiple volumes collected from professionals worldwide.The second release of ITIL® V2 consisted of 7 volumes which concentrated all past volumes of IT basic operations.ITIL® V3 is more focused on the business side of the industry along with other aspects as well.ITIL® V3, hence, comprises of five sections which cover all aspects of ITSM. These sections further include multiple processes which the organisations implement according to their needs.Service StrategyService DesignService TransitionService OperationContinual Service ImprovementThese five sections cover the lifecycle of service in ITSM. We will discuss each section one by one to get a clear understanding of what each section contributes towards the lifecycle.Service Strategy: As ITIL® V3 is focused more on the business aspect of ITSM, this section is dedicated to catering to the business cases. It checks on the defined business goals and their new requirements. It further develops a strategy which helps provide a service the business needs in a cost-effective and efficient way.Service Design: After the requirements are gathered from the business, this section helps in implementing those requirements in the form of architecture, processes, policies, and documentation. It fulfils its role by providing comprehensive guidance.Service Transition: Changes in technology and business needs are inevitable, which is why it is imperative that such changes, when they are deployed, do not hinder or disrupt the ongoing services. This stage, therefore, looks after the transition stage of service. When a service is transitioning into the business environment, this section provides guidance and processes activities.  Service Operation: This section is more pertaining to the customer. It ensures that every business meets its customer expectations or requirements. It focuses on processes and delivery activities to ensure smooth working of daily operational tasks by monitoring given services.Continual Service Improvement: As the name suggests, this section is for the improvement of services. Based on its learning, which it receives through past services’ failures/successes, it introduces changes to the existing services.Roles in this space, of ITIL® and ITSM, can be elaborated as under:What is ITIL® V3 credit system?ITIL® V3 has a credit system which awards recognition through certificate-based examination. There are multiple certifications and with each one, you accumulate credits.You can enhance your reputation in the IT industry by rising through the ranks of ITIL® certifications which is awarded on a credit-basis exam. Credits are required to be eligible for higher certifications.The ITIL® V4 modules vary slightly from the ITIL® V3 structure and will be released during 2019, with Foundation being made available in February 2019. Modules, including the ITIL® Specialist module, the ITIL® Strategist and the ITIL® Leader will be released in the latter half of 2019.  Post the ITIL® V4 Foundation level; the candidate can choose to pursue either the ITIL® Managing Professional (ITIL® MP) or ITIL® Strategic Leader (ITIL® SL). End-learners must complete both - the ITIL® MP and ITIL® SL - to be eligible to certify as an ITIL® Master.To be certified as an ITIL® Managing Professional, the candidate must complete the following modules:ITIL® V4 FoundationITIL® Specialist: Create, Deliver & SupportITIL® Specialist: Drive Stakeholder ValueITIL® Specialist: High-Velocity ITITIL® Strategist: Direct, Plan & ImproveTo be certified as an ITIL® SL, candidates must complete the following modules:ITIL® 4 FoundationITIL® Strategist: Direct, Plan & ImproveITIL® Leader: Digital and IT StrategyThe ITIL® Strategist: Direct, Plan & Improve is a universal module for both the ITIL® streams. This is followed by the MALC i.e.  Managing Across The Lifecycle, ITIL® Expert and then the ITIL® Master, all of which are advanced levels to ensure the candidate attains the ITIL® certification.Some important pointers of ITIL® V4 are as under:Start with the ITIL 4 Foundation certification which fetches you two credits and its corresponding Foundation certificate.For each specialization after Foundation, until MALC, you will be awarded three or four credits depending upon the certification. ITIL® Practitioner certification fetches you three credits while covering the whole spectrum of the best practices.ITIL® Practitioner can be taken either immediately after Foundation or after before MALC and after completion of rest of the certifications.Before Managing across the Lifecycle (MALC), you can gather 17 credits in any order you prefer.To advance to ITIL® Expert level, you’d need a total of 22 credits including an ITIL® Practitioner certification and then MALC.It is important to note that the ITIL® system uses a credit system right from the Foundation level through the Expert levels with each certification amounting to a certain number of credits. The following chart illustrates the current ITIL® credit system:Sr. NoLevel of ITIL® certificationNo. of credits awarded1ITIL® Foundation22ITIL® Practitioner33ITIL® IntermediateLifecycle ModuleService Strategy3Service Design3Service Transition3Service Operation3Continual Service Improvement3Capability ModuleOperational Support and Analysis4Planning, Protection, and Optimization4Release, Control, and Validation4Service Offerings and Agreements44Managing across the lifecycle55ITIL® ExpertWhat are the ITIL® V3 services and processes?As part of the lifecycle of ITIL® V3 services, five sections are defined and each of them plays a key role in the service’s life. These five sections contain multiple processes, which in turn, are adopted by the companies or organisations into their teams.Starting from the planning, according to the business needs, to the improvement or the eventual retiring of a service, ITIL® V3 covers all stages of ITSM. Due to the coverage it provides, it has become an essential part of ITSM.There are millions of ITIL® V3 professionals around the globeIt is up to an organisation as to which processes of a section it may want to select and what not. This property of ITIL® makes it flexible for implementation purposes.The five sections in a lifecycle of an ITIL® V3 service are:Service Strategy: It strategizes how to create a service that caters to the needs of a business. Processes included under Service Strategy are:Strategy GenerationFinancial ManagementDemand ManagementService Portfolio ManagementService Design: All the infrastructure, technology, processes, and policies of service along with other things are designed in this section with the help of the following processes:Service Catalog ManagementService Level ManagementAvailability ManagementCapacity ManagementIT Service Continuity ManagementInformation Security ManagementSupplier Management      Service Transition: All the changes introduced in the services are needed to be smooth and non-disrupting to productivity. This section covers that with the help of the following processes:Transition Planning and SupportChange ManagementService Asset and Configuration ManagementRelease and Deployment ManagementService Validation and TestingEvaluationKnowledge ManagementService Operation: This section ensures the smooth running of daily operational tasks and checks whether the business is meeting customer requirements or not. It accomplishes this task with the help of the following processes:Event ManagementIncident ManagementRequest FulfillmentProblem ManagementAccess Management      Continual Service Improvement: To continuously improve the efficiency of the services through learning from past services, this section employs the following processes:The 7 improvement processService MeasurementService Reporting      Difference between ITIL® V2 & ITIL® V3With the introduction of ITIL® V3, AXELOS aimed to focus more on the business needs of the industry, instead of just concentrating all resources on the basic IT operations - which ITIL® V2 did. The ITIL® V2 contained the following disciplines:Service SupportService DeliveryWe can conclude from the above disciplines that the sole aim of ITIL® V2 was to support basic IT processes. ITIL® V3, on the other hand, extends this support to the whole lifecycle of a service and more importantly, catering to the needs of the business and customers.Besides these, ITIL® V3 has other major differences and upgrades from ITIL® V2 which we have compiled and shown in the table below:ITIL® V2ITIL® V3Majorly process-orientedFocused on the complete lifecycle of service in ITSM (including business needs)Has seven volumesHas five volumesEfficient and cost-effective processesStrategic emphasis is given along with efficiency and cost-effectiveness to the processA singular function was divided into ten processes25 processes categorised suitably under four functionsNo clear assignment of roles in processesRoles and responsibilities are clearly defined for each processFocused on “what” perspective - “what can be done and why”Aimed at the “how” approach - how it can be doneIncludes 700 pages of publicationsIncludes 1400 pages of its five key publicationsFocuses on the theoretical part of the business in ITSMFocuses on the practical aspect and aligns much better with the needs of modern business
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What is ITIL® V3?

Lack of standardised practices in the IT sector cr... Read More