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ITIL Comprehensive Guide

Most enterprises and their service providers find it difficult to manage IT services within a business. ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) was created to solve this problem. It offers a management framework and process guidance that has become a popularly accepted standard. ITIL is used by several organizations, including IBM, NASA, and HSBC to standardize IT Management procedures. Thus, many IT professionals have been trained and certified as ITIL experts according to the recent ITIL certification stats published by EXIN.If you are new to ITIL, learning it may look difficult. It can be a bit dry. However, this guide simplifies the ITIL concepts and makes it easy for you to understand.Let’s get started.Table of ContentITIL: Overview and HistoryWhat is ITIL?History of ITILPrinciples of ITILBasics ITIL terminologies and conceptsITIL LifecycleITIL ProcessesProcesses under ITIL Service StrategyProcesses under ITIL Service DesignProcesses under ITIL Service TransitionProcesses under ITIL Service OperationBenefits of adopting the ITIL frameworkITIL: Where to startITIL Implementation RoadmapHow to embrace ITIL as an organizationITIL TodayThe Future of ITILITIL certification Guide: Overview and career pathsITIL Certification Program OverviewBenefits of ITIL to individualsBenefits of ITIL to organizations/businessesWhat is ITIL certification and is it worth it?Levels of ITIL CertificationITIL Foundation CertificationITIL PractitionerITIL Intermediate Level CertificationITIL Expert CertificationITIL Master CertificationWhy do you need to attend ITIL training to take the exam?Types of TrainingWho should take ITIL Certification?ITIL related jobs and careersConclusionITIL: Overview and HistoryWhat is ITIL?ITIL is coined from two root words - Information Technology (IT) and Infrastructure Library (IL). ITIL emerged in response to the need for the best practices and procedures in IT Service Management. The focus of ITIL is to keep IT Services aligned with the business needs of the organization. ITIL, therefore, is a group of documents that provide the best practice framework for building Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) solutions in the organizations.History of ITILThe ITIL Framework was developed in the 1980s as a governmental initiative. It was developed by the Central Computer and Telecommunication Agency (CCTA) - an arm of the British Government in response to the poor and substandard quality of IT services rendered to the government. Prior to the development of ITIL, different private and public players in IT Service Management (ITSM) created and used a different framework. This resulted in duplication of efforts, an increase in cost, along with unnecessary and diverse complexity in establishing the IT Infrastructure. ITIL, therefore, is a response to standardize IT Infrastructures Service Delivery Management.The initial version of ITIL was originally called Government Information Technology Infrastructure Management (GITIM). Though GITIM differed from the current ITIL framework, the concept was similar in both, as it focused on service support and delivery.The first version - ITIL v1, encompassed a broad-based framework of 30-volumes in IT ecosystem. The focus was on the clients and business needs from the perspective of a customer.There was a major change to ITIL v1 between 2000-2001, giving rise to ITIL v2. The focus of ITIL v2 was to make ITIL more accessible and less intimidating. The 30 volumes frameworks in ITIL v1 were rearranged into 9 sets of logical and related elements. In 2006, ITIL Glossary was released thus enhancing the user-friendliness of ITIL v2.The third version - ITIL v3 was published in 2007. It adopted a life cycle approach to service management - a highly organized compact framework of 26 processes. ITIL v3 is now commonly referred to as ITIL 2007 edition.The current edition of ITIL was launched in July 2011. It was launched in five different volumes:ITIL Service StrategyITIL Service DesignITIL Service TransitionITIL Service OperationITIL Continual Service ImprovementIn 2013, AXELOS Ltd - a joint venture between the British Government’s HM Cabinet Office and Capita Plc. became the owner of ITIL. AXELOS now acts as a licensing authority, accreditation provider to the testing institutes, and is also responsible for managing the updates.AXELOS announced in 2017 that a new ITIL is being developed for 2018.Principles of ITILIt is not an easy path for organizations to adopt customer focused and service-oriented approach in IT Service Management. There must be a change in the mindset to achieve such a cultural shift. There are nine (9) Guiding Principles from ITIL Best Practices.Focus on ValueITIL Service Strategy posits that ‘the value of a service comes from what it enables someone to do’. As defined by the Customer, Value is an achievement of the objectives and an affordable mix of fixtures. Service Value could be in the form of reduced pain, reduced cost, increased productivity and better competitiveness. Design for ExperienceServices must be designed based on user needs and experience. This is critical to service success.Start Where You AreThe goal of this principle is to encourage businesses to approach change gradually. It is not about ripping off the old and starting from scratch. ‘Start Where You Are’ is about building gradually on what you have. For instance, build on successful practices and replicate if possible. If you have nothing to build on, then start from scratch.Work HolisticallyNo service components standalone. In order to not to jeopardize the results delivered to the customers, the service provider must work holistically on all the aspects of service delivery and not just on parts. To achieve this, Service providers must consider People, Process, Products, and Partners.Progress IterativelyService Providers cannot accomplish everything at once. It is imperative to organize tasks into smaller, manageable sections. Every desired improvement must have a focused objective and scope. This will enhance the effective and efficient completion of such tasks.Observe DirectlyIt is important to know and measure what is going on through direct observation and not rely on data alone. Direct observation will reduce or eliminate unfounded assumptions. Business information and decisions based on poor monitoring, measuring and reporting could elicit bad behavior from the staff. Never substitute data for direct observation.Be TransparentTransparency creates awareness about what is happening and why it is happening. More people help to make the things happen than obstructing them when there is transparency. Be honest with your teams and customers. Achievement must be communicated and celebrated together.CollaborateCollaborating individuals will yield better results than when individuals work separately. Through collaboration, people share concepts, ideas and can support one another.Keep It SimpleDiscard any process, service or action that does not produce a useful outcome. Use the least number of steps or procedure to accomplish an objective. Complex work methods neither maximizes the outcome nor minimizes the cost.It is good to automate a process to not only reduce the manual efforts also eliminate human errors.Basics ITIL terminologies and conceptsThe ITIL Frameworks are built around these Service Concepts:Maximum Value delivered to the Customers without the customer bearing  unpredicted costs and risksMaximum Service Value must be delivered to the customersThe use of 'resources' and 'capability' optimallyOffering services with the best utility and trusted warrantyProcesses must be planned for specific objectives.Roles must be clearly defined for tasks requiring collective efforts.The following are the basic terminologies within the ITIL framework:ITIL: Set of the best practices that must be adhered to Infrastructure service providers in IT Service Management. Service: Rendering and delivering the desired results to the customers while working within the given constraints.Service Strategy:  A careful plan by the service provider to outperform competitive alternatives over time and through instances of change in leadershipService Model: This is a description of service delivery and its components. Service Portfolio: A description of services rendered and service delivery components.Customer Portfolio: A record of all the customers of the IT service provider is kept in a Customer Portfolio.Operational Level Agreement (OLA): An agreement between the IT service provider and a different part of the same organization. SACM: Service Assets and Configuration Management is done to ensure up-to-date maintenance and verification of assets.Incident: Any disruption in IT service delivery processProblem: An unknown cause of one or multiple incidentsITIL LifecycleThe current edition of ITIL is divided into five components or categories. It takes a holistic or lifecycle approach to provide the best practice in IT Service Management (ITSM). These are the core components of ITIL:ITIL Service StrategyITIL Service DesignITIL Service TransitionITIL Service OperationITIL Continual Service ImprovementITIL Service StrategyThis is the first stage of ITIL Lifecycles. In order to improve service management in a service providing organization, there must be a consistent service strategy. The service strategy must be in agreement with the business objectives of the customer and in addition to this managing services within its scope. The warranty at this stage of ITIL lifecycle is to ensure that the strategy is fit for purpose and use.ITIL Service DesignThis is the second stage in ITIL lifecycles. The service design stage provides a guidance on how to turn strategies, generated in the earlier (Service Strategy) stage into action. At this stage, services and processes are designed and plans are implemented for the purpose of better service management.In service designs, four important areas should be taken into consideration. These are People, Processes, Products, and Partner otherwise known as the "Four Ps of Service Design".People: Human resources and structures within the organization required to support the service.Processes: Service Management Processes needs to support the serviceProducts: Technology and other infrastructuresPartners: A partner could be a third party rendering additional support geared towards the serviceITIL Service TransitionThis is the third stage of the ITIL lifecycle. The core objective is building and deploying IT Services into a live environment in a coordinated manner. The design is built, tested and moved into the production side, so that the business customer can achieve the desired values. At this stage, IT professionals and business associates learn the importance of managing a change in a productive manner. ITIL Service Operation This is the fourth stage in ITIL. ITIL service operation cycle involves managing the services and processes that have been transitioned into a live environment. The Management components of ITIL Service Operation stage includes - Event Management, Incident Management, Request Fulfillment, Access Management, Problem Management, IT Operations control, and Facilities Management among others.ITIL Continual Service Improvement (CSI)This is the fifth and the last stage of ITIL lifecycle. This stage involves a holistic view of earlier stages with the view to check the key performance indicators and determining whether the service is running optimally. The objective of this stage is to learn from past success and failures using quality management methods. Lessons learned are then utilized to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of IT processes.Using CSI, IT Service organizations can measure and improve on Service levels and Technology. CSI also guarantees that services will grow progressively into more and more profitable services.Continual Service Improvement involves Service Review, Process Evaluation, CSI initiatives and Monitoring of CSI initiatives.ITIL ProcessesAccording to ITIL v3 Glossary, Process is defined as "a structured set of activities designed to accomplish a specific objective. A process takes one or more defined inputs and turns them into the required outputs. A process may include any of the roles and responsibilities, tools and management control required to reliably deliver the outputs. A process may define policies, standards, guidelines, activities and work instructions if they are needed"There are 26 processes in ITIL. The processes are divided into a group of five under the ITIL lifecycles. For instance, ITIL Service Strategy has four processes.Processes under ITIL Service Strategy Strategy Management Process - Involves resolving service failures, fixing problems and regular operational checks to ensure efficiency.Service Portfolio Management - A service portfolio consists of all the services being managed by a Service Provider. Service Portfolio consists of 3 distinct parts - Service Pipeline, Service Catalog, and Retired Services. Service Portfolio Management oversees the process by which services are identified, described, evaluated and selected. Financial Management Process (for IT Services) - Provides the platform for managing the costs and other elements of finance. The process involves three key activities: Accounting, Budgeting, and Charging.Demands Management Process - The demand manager role is to understand and influence customer demand. User Profile and Pattern of Business Activity are models considered in Demand Management.Processes under ITIL Service Design Service Catalog Management - The management and control of the information regarding different services in the service catalog. Service Level Management – This is the process of securing and managing agreement between the Customer and the Service Provider. Service level Management is carried out at the Performance and Reliability Levels. Service Management at different levels gave rise to the Service Level Agreements Availability Management - Ensures that Availability Requirement in the Service Level Agreement is adhered to. 'Availability' is the ability of a system or service to perform its functions when needed.Capacity Management - Capacity Management is carried out in three basic areas: Business Capacity, Service Capacity, and Component Capacity.IT Service Continuity Management (ITSCM) - ITSCM makes sure that the Service Providers can always render the minimum, agreed-upon level of service.IT Security Management - Involves the Management of Information Assets. It Manages the Confidentiality, Integrity, Availability, and Authenticity of Information Assets.Supplier Management - The goal of this process of management is to ensure value for money from 3rd party suppliers. It is charged with the responsibility to Evaluate suppliers, Negotiate with suppliers, Review suppliers Performance, Renew or Terminate Contract with the Suppliers.Processes under ITIL Service TransitionChange Management - The goal is to control the changes at all levels, thereby ensuring that beneficial changes are made with minimal disruption to IT Services. Change Evaluation - The goal of this process is the assessment of major changes, for instance, the introduction of a new service or a major change to the existing service. Project Management - This process is essential for planning and coordinating the use of resources.Application Development - This process deals with the availability of applications and systems required for functionality of IT Services. Release and Deployment Management - The goal of this process is the planning, scheduling and controlling the movement of releases to the live environment.Service Validation and Testing - This process ensures that the expectations of the customers are met.Service Asset and Configuration Management - Maintains information about configuration items.Knowledge Management - The process improves Knowledge efficiency thus reducing the need to rediscover knowledge.Processes under ITIL Service OperationEvent Management - Involves the monitoring of CIs as well as the services and events categorization.Incident Management - Manages the lifecycle of all the Incidents. It seeks to return IT services to the users as soon as possible.Access Management - It grants authorization to the right users of a service. Access Management is also known as Identity or Rights Management.Problem Management - This Process manages the life cycles of all the problems. Proactive measures are taken to analyze Incident Record in order to identify trends or significant problems. IT Operations Control - This involves the monitoring and control of IT Services in day-to-day routine tasks. Facilities Management - This process involves the management of the physical environment of IT Infrastructure.Technical Management - This process involves the provision of useful technical expertise and support for the management of IT Infrastructure.Benefits of adopting the ITIL frameworkBusiness opportunities are constantly growing and with these opportunities, the challenge of confidentiality and service quality is growing at the same pace. IT Service providing organization are expected to work efficiently in order to meet and exceed service expectations. Hence, there is a need to adopt the ITIL Framework. The following are some of the benefits that your organization will gain by adopting ITIL.Improve Return on Investment of ITGreater bonding or alignment between IT and the businessEnhance Service Delivery and greater customer satisfactionReduces cost as a result of the efficient use of resourcesImplementation of best practices to improve IT servicesImprove relationship and interaction between IT Service Providers and their customersEnhanced Ability to manage business risk and Service DisruptionCreating a stable service environment to support and keep pace with business changeITIL: Where to startEvery organization is different, also the starting/implementation point for ITIL is different. You may not need every part of ITIL for your organization.In Implementing ITIL, organizations should give preference to that part of ITIL which identifies the biggest problems of IT employees and Customers. Parts of ITIL that addresses these problems are Incident Management, Change Management, and Request Fulfillment. ITIL Implementation RoadmapYour organization should create a roadmap as an implementation guide. Do not seek to adopt all the component of ITIL at once. Make ITIL adoption a long-term goal. Your roadmap must prioritize the improvement that you desire in your organization. If your IT staffs are not familiar with ITIL, you should include ITIL education program for all IT staff members. Constantly, refer to your ITIL implementation roadmap to be sure that you are on course.Before you understand how to adopt ITIL at an organizational level, it is necessary to acquire basic ITIL skills and knowledge as an individual. A comprehensive ITIL® Foundation Certification training program, coupled with industry-relevant course materials can come in handy, especially if you intend to earn credits towards ITIL® expert certification ahead.How to embrace ITIL as an organization Start by setting the right objectivesYour objectives must be chosen according to the need of the organization. What problem do you want to solve with ITIL? How can you improve the quality of your services to clients?  Holistic Approach to all ITIL StagesSome organization adopts ITIL in parts. It is better to embrace all the lifecycle stages of ITIL without neglecting relevant stages. Manage Change and Resistance to Change Embracing ITIL involves a change in organizational behavior. Changes required by embracing ITIL will also encounter resistance from the staff who are used to performing tasks in certain ways. To avoid these bottlenecks, the organization needs to create a sense of urgency around the change required, promote the right vision and strategy, delegate responsibility, create short-term wins (success goals), and create a culture of change. Continuous Training of IT Team The last state in ITIL is Continuous Service Improvement, to achieve this, your IT team in the organization must undergo continuous training until it has fully grasped the ITIL framework.ITIL Today A look at the adoption of ITIL in the United States and Canada shows considerable similarities. However, Canada started earlier than the United States. Companies in North America are adopting ITIL in parts. They are particularly interested in the processes focused on Service Operation and Service Transition.The introduction of Service Catalog gave ITIL a boost amongst the end-user services.The current adoption levels in ITIL are the biggest proof of its relevance. AXELOS states that ‘over a million IT professionals in the US rely on ITIL’s best practice guidance to deliver business success […]As a reflection of this, the update will continue to include the widely-adopted core principles of ITIL.’ The Future of ITILITIL Is looking forward to a few major changes in the new update. According to Peter Hepworth from AXELOS, ITIL v4 will shift its focus on:Core Principle of Quality Service ManagementA practical guide on how to use ITILHow to Combine the use of ITIL with DevOps, Agile and Lean ITIL v4, an update to the current edition is due to be released in the 1st quarter of 2019. There will also be a sufficient crossover period between the current version and the new update in order to minimize the impact of day-to-day operations.ITIL Certification Guide: Overview and career paths ITIL Certification Program OverviewITIL is a leading framework for managing IT service delivery globally. ITIL consists of a lifecycle model that recommends specific processes and activities during the design, development, and delivery of IT Services. Since July 2013, AXELOS Ltd - a joint venture between the British Government's HM Cabinet Office and Capita Plc. took ownership of ITIL. This is responsible for developing the ITIL frameworks; accrediting training and examination institutes. There are hundreds of ITIL Accredited Training Organization (ATO) worldwide. ITIL has five (5) different certifications. These are ITIL FoundationITIL PractitionerITIL Intermediate ITIL ExpertITIL MasterITIL uses a Credit System of Grading for the various level of Certification up till the expert level. You will need a total of 22 Credits to earn the ITIL Expert Certification. There are different requirements to wear the crown of ITIL Master Certification.Benefits of ITIL to individualsThe IT industry is dynamic, thus making it difficult to catch up with the trends. Over the years ITIL has been established within the IT Service Management field. A standard framework or the best practices is a major need for IT professionals in IT services and IT Management.  ITIL best practices are important in the effective management of businesses. Organizations now require ITIL Certified professionals to scale up in the industry.These are some of the benefits of being an ITIL certified professional Recognition:ITIL Certification is viewed as a standard benchmark of quality for IT professionals globally. IT Service Providers and Employers recognize the ITIL brand and any professional certified by ITIL. ITIL qualification is worth the effort and will help you in your career development.   Proficiency in ITIL Terminologies and VocabularyITIL has a name or term for most of the processes and activities in the IT World. There are professionals using IT service management processes without a clear understanding of the processes or terminologies. Through ITIL training and Certification, you will learn the common language/terms in IT Service Management. This, in turn, facilitates better communication with other professionals. Build a dynamic and strong employee-customer relationshipThe success of entities in IT Services is strongly tied to its personnel. Personnel with appropriate competencies, skills, and experience will thrive better in the industry. ITIL training will help you to gain more confidence, competence, and will improve service delivery to customers. The culture of Thinking out of the BoxITIL training will stretch your mind. You are trained to be flexible and encouraged to think out of the box - to come up with new creative ways of working to improve customer satisfaction. ITIL training scheme will help you to contribute effectively to the process of IT Service delivery. Better Job ProspectsAs expected of any good certification, ITIL will enhance your job prospect. Organizations are finding a smarter way to demonstrate value in the workplace. With ITIL, you will be able to contribute constructively and effectively in the ITIL Service Management processes.  Benefits of ITIL to Organizations/BusinessesIn addition to the benefits enumerated earlier, there are other benefits of ITIL lifecycles as it relates to an organization.ITIL Service Strategy will help your organization to understand the customers and develop and deliver IT Services that meet their expectation. Your organization will have satisfied customers.Through ITIL Service Design, your organization will be able to design an efficient and cost-effective service.ITIL Service Transition will advise and guide your organization on building and testing the service designs. Another benefit of ITIL to your organization is that it will be equipped to deliver and manage any service.ITIL CSI will furnish your organization with the mechanism for constant service improvement.What is ITIL certification and is it worth to take this?ITIL certification is a modular approach to the ITIL framework. It consists of a series of different qualifications with a focus on different aspect of ITIL best practices. The degree and depth of details vary at the various level of certification. Holding a professional IT Certification in a competitive marketplace is a great advantage over those that are not certified. ITIL is the standard benchmark in IT practices. ITIL Certification convinces a prospective employer that you have an understanding of the ITIL framework, how it fits together and its application in a business environment.ITIL Certification also entails that you have been trained in the five major areas that drive the IT Lifecycle.There are five distinct levels of ITIL Certification - Foundation, Practitioner, Intermediate, Expert, and Master.Levels of ITIL CertificationITIL Foundation CertificationITIL Foundation is the basic in ITIL certifications. It covers the basics of ITIL practice areas. It is the entry level that offers a general awareness, concepts, and terminologies within the ITIL lifecycles. It is designed for those who require a basic understanding of the ITIL framework. Foundation certification will be helpful to those who need an understanding of how to use ITIL to enhance IT Service Management.There are no prerequisites for this level of certification. Anyone who is interested in IT Service Management can apply. However, you will need higher certifications before you can qualify for IT Service Management Positions.Surviving and sustaining in a VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) project environment as a beginner will no longer be challenging if you utilize the maximum benefits from an expert-authored ITIL® Foundation Certification Training Program.ITIL PractitionerThis is the next level in the ITIL Scheme. Newly introduced, the first examination at this level was conducted in 2016. It was developed to provide a step between the foundation and intermediate level of certifications. An ITIL Practitioner will be able to explain how to adopt the ITIL Framework to support the business objective while focusing on organizational change management, communications, measurement, and metrics.This certification can be taken at any level beyond Foundation. This is because the skills covered are not in the existing certifications. ITIL practitioner follows 9 Guiding PrinciplesFocus on valueDesign for ExperienceStart where you areWork holisticallyProgressive iterativelyObserve directlyBe transparentCollaborateKeep it simpleA professional intending to take ITIL Practitioner exam must hold a current ITIL Foundation Certificate. ITIL practitioner is NOT a prerequisite for the ITIL Intermediate Level certification. ITIL Practitioner certification will help you to earn three (3) Credits towards ITIL Expert Certification.The examination consists of 40 multiple choice questions. You are required to pass 28 i.e. score 70%.ITIL Intermediate Level CertificationITIL Intermediate certification is structured as modules and each module focuses on different areas of IT Service Management. You can take as many intermediate qualifications as you need. The modules are either classified as Service Lifecycle or Service CapabilityIn the Service Lifecycle modules we have:Service Strategy,Service Design,Service Transition, Service Operation, Continual Service Improvement.The Service Capability modules consist of:Operational Support and Analysis Planning, Protection, and Optimization Release, Control, and ValidationService Offerings and Agreements ITIL Intermediate certification can be taken by anyone who has passed the ITIL Foundation exam. It is a recommendation that you should have at least 2 years of professional experience working in IT Service Management before attempting the ITIL Intermediate Certification Exam.ITIL Expert CertificationITIL Expert is an advanced certification. It covers the breadth and depth of ITIL processes and practices across-board ITIL professions. ITIL Expert Certification is aimed at IT Service Professionals who are willing to demonstrate holistic ITIL Scheme knowledge. This certification is awarded only to those candidates who have excelled in a range of ITIL certification and possess superior knowledge and skill in ITIL Best Practices. There are key requirements before you can qualify for ITIL Expert Certification:Candidates must hold the ITIL Foundation certificate or a Bridge certification equivalent.You must have earned a minimum total of 17 credits from the Foundation and Intermediate modules.Some credits from earlier qualifications and complementary certifications can also count towards these 17 credits.You must attempt and Pass the Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) module with a minimum score of 70% to achieve a total of 22 credits required for the ITIL Expert certificate. ITIL Expert is a prerequisite to the highest level of ITIL Certification - the ITIL Master.ITIL Master Certification ITIL Master is the zenith of ITIL Certifications. It demonstrates the application of ITIL framework and best practices in real-life situations. ITIL Master covers all areas of ITIL Principles from Foundation through Expert Level Certifications.Candidates must explain and justify how they have selected and applied a range of knowledge, principles, and methods from ITIL Management techniques in order to achieve ITIL Master.In addition, an ITIL Master must:Have a current ITIL Expert CertificationPossess five years of ITIL experience in Management or LeadershipSubmit a proposal for service improvementBe successful in an Interview with the ITIL Assessment Panel.In a view of the stringent nature, the cost of ITIL Master certification is approximately $40,000. So, this certification needs seriousness and a high-level of dedication. Why do you need to attend ITIL training to take the exam?ITIL training is not compulsory or required before taking the ITIL Foundation Certification Exam. Candidates can source free materials online such as the TSO Foundation pass guide.Subsequently, ITIL Certification will require mandatory training.Types of TrainingA candidate can take ITIL classroom training for ITIL courses. The training could also be offered in a "virtual classroom". All activities in a virtual classroom will be similar to a live classroom except that training will be done remotely.There are also online training - e-learning, Computer-based training/ self-paced/ distance learning.You should research diligently before deciding which type of training is best for you. All the trainings are accredited against the same standards. In the United Kingdom, delegates lean toward the classroom style of training whereas in the US most of the delegates prefer online training.You can find Accredited Training Organizations (ATO) here.Who should take ITIL Certification?ITIL Certification is suitable for Professionals who desire to bring positive changes to their organization.IT Managers and Directors - A certification in ITIL is a valuable credential for IT Project Managers.IT Service-support Engineers may never become ITIL Masters but a basic knowledge of the ITIL framework can provide support for the ITIL process.Other Professionals who could take the ITIL course and Certification to advance in their professions are:Technical Support Professionals in IT ServicesQuality AnalystsOperations ManagersDatabase AdministratorsBusiness OwnersITIL related jobs and careersThere is more than one way to build a career in IT Industry, this is largely dependent on your experience and expertise. IT is becoming a critical part of most businesses including small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Job roles and description varies among employers. Here are some ITIL related jobs and careers.Business Relationship ManagerCyber Resilience ConsultantService Level ManagerIT ArchitectIT Security ArchitectBusiness Continuity ManagerSupplier Relationship ManagerRelease ManagerIT Change ManagerIT Configuration ManagerCyber Resilience ManagerCyber Resilience AuditorService Desk TechnicianService Desk ManagerIT Support TechnicianApplication Support SpecialistHardware Support SpecialistNetwork Support SpecialistSecurity AnalystIncident ManagerIT Operations ManagerIT Project ManagerIT Programme ManagerChief Information OfficerChief Technology OfficerChief Information Security OfficerConclusionThe valuable contributions of ITIL Framework to business growth and IT professionals' career has established ITIL in the zenith of IT Service Management (ITSM). ITIL adoption and implementation by businesses on the rise as well. Thus, ITIL Certification is a valuable skill for any IT professional who wants to remain relevant in the IT Service Delivery and Management. Today is the best day to consider taking an ITIL Certification!
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ITIL Comprehensive Guide

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ITIL Comprehensive Guide

Most enterprises and their service providers find it difficult to manage IT services within a business. ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) was created to solve this problem. It offers a management framework and process guidance that has become a popularly accepted standard. ITIL is used by several organizations, including IBM, NASA, and HSBC to standardize IT Management procedures. 

Thus, many IT professionals have been trained and certified as ITIL experts according to the recent ITIL certification stats published by EXIN.

If you are new to ITIL, learning it may look difficult. It can be a bit dry. However, this guide simplifies the ITIL concepts and makes it easy for you to understand.

Let’s get started.

Table of Content

ITIL: Overview and History

  • What is ITIL?
  • History of ITIL
  • Principles of ITIL

Basics ITIL terminologies and concepts

  • ITIL Lifecycle
  • ITIL Processes
    • Processes under ITIL Service Strategy
    • Processes under ITIL Service Design
    • Processes under ITIL Service Transition
    • Processes under ITIL Service Operation

Benefits of adopting the ITIL framework

ITIL: Where to start

ITIL Implementation Roadmap

How to embrace ITIL as an organization

ITIL Today

The Future of ITIL

ITIL certification Guide: Overview and career paths

  • ITIL Certification Program Overview
  • Benefits of ITIL to individuals

Benefits of ITIL to organizations/businesses

What is ITIL certification and is it worth it?

Levels of ITIL Certification

  • ITIL Foundation Certification
  • ITIL Practitioner
  • ITIL Intermediate Level Certification
  • ITIL Expert Certification
  • ITIL Master Certification

Why do you need to attend ITIL training to take the exam?

  • Types of Training

Who should take ITIL Certification?

ITIL related jobs and careers

Conclusion

ITIL: Overview and History

What is ITIL?

ITIL is coined from two root words - Information Technology (IT) and Infrastructure Library (IL). ITIL emerged in response to the need for the best practices and procedures in IT Service Management. The focus of ITIL is to keep IT Services aligned with the business needs of the organization. ITIL, therefore, is a group of documents that provide the best practice framework for building Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) solutions in the organizations.

History of ITIL

The ITIL Framework was developed in the 1980s as a governmental initiative. It was developed by the Central Computer and Telecommunication Agency (CCTA) - an arm of the British Government in response to the poor and substandard quality of IT services rendered to the government. 

Prior to the development of ITIL, different private and public players in IT Service Management (ITSM) created and used a different framework. This resulted in duplication of efforts, an increase in cost, along with unnecessary and diverse complexity in establishing the IT Infrastructure. ITIL, therefore, is a response to standardize IT Infrastructures Service Delivery Management.

The initial version of ITIL was originally called Government Information Technology Infrastructure Management (GITIM). Though GITIM differed from the current ITIL framework, the concept was similar in both, as it focused on service support and delivery.

The first version - ITIL v1, encompassed a broad-based framework of 30-volumes in IT ecosystem. The focus was on the clients and business needs from the perspective of a customer.

There was a major change to ITIL v1 between 2000-2001, giving rise to ITIL v2. The focus of ITIL v2 was to make ITIL more accessible and less intimidating. The 30 volumes frameworks in ITIL v1 were rearranged into 9 sets of logical and related elements. In 2006, ITIL Glossary was released thus enhancing the user-friendliness of ITIL v2.

The third version - ITIL v3 was published in 2007. It adopted a life cycle approach to service management - a highly organized compact framework of 26 processes. ITIL v3 is now commonly referred to as ITIL 2007 edition.

The current edition of ITIL was launched in July 2011. It was launched in five different volumes:

  • ITIL Service Strategy
  • ITIL Service Design
  • ITIL Service Transition
  • ITIL Service Operation
  • ITIL Continual Service Improvement

In 2013, AXELOS Ltd - a joint venture between the British Government’s HM Cabinet Office and Capita Plc. became the owner of ITIL. AXELOS now acts as a licensing authority, accreditation provider to the testing institutes, and is also responsible for managing the updates.

AXELOS announced in 2017 that a new ITIL is being developed for 2018.

Principles of ITILprinciples of ITIL

It is not an easy path for organizations to adopt customer focused and service-oriented approach in IT Service Management. There must be a change in the mindset to achieve such a cultural shift. There are nine (9) Guiding Principles from ITIL Best Practices.

  1. Focus on Value

ITIL Service Strategy posits that ‘the value of a service comes from what it enables someone to do’. As defined by the Customer, Value is an achievement of the objectives and an affordable mix of fixtures. Service Value could be in the form of reduced pain, reduced cost, increased productivity and better competitiveness. 

  1. Design for Experience

Services must be designed based on user needs and experience. This is critical to service success.

  1. Start Where You Are

The goal of this principle is to encourage businesses to approach change gradually. It is not about ripping off the old and starting from scratch. ‘Start Where You Are’ is about building gradually on what you have. For instance, build on successful practices and replicate if possible. If you have nothing to build on, then start from scratch.

  1. Work Holistically

No service components standalone. In order to not to jeopardize the results delivered to the customers, the service provider must work holistically on all the aspects of service delivery and not just on parts. To achieve this, Service providers must consider People, Process, Products, and Partners.

  1. Progress Iteratively

Service Providers cannot accomplish everything at once. It is imperative to organize tasks into smaller, manageable sections. Every desired improvement must have a focused objective and scope. This will enhance the effective and efficient completion of such tasks.

  1. Observe Directly

It is important to know and measure what is going on through direct observation and not rely on data alone. Direct observation will reduce or eliminate unfounded assumptions. Business information and decisions based on poor monitoring, measuring and reporting could elicit bad behavior from the staff. Never substitute data for direct observation.

  1. Be Transparent

Transparency creates awareness about what is happening and why it is happening. More people help to make the things happen than obstructing them when there is transparency. Be honest with your teams and customers. Achievement must be communicated and celebrated together.

  1. Collaborate

Collaborating individuals will yield better results than when individuals work separately. Through collaboration, people share concepts, ideas and can support one another.

  1. Keep It Simple

Discard any process, service or action that does not produce a useful outcome. Use the least number of steps or procedure to accomplish an objective. Complex work methods neither maximizes the outcome nor minimizes the cost.

It is good to automate a process to not only reduce the manual efforts also eliminate human errors.

Basics ITIL terminologies and concepts

The ITIL Frameworks are built around these Service Concepts:

  • Maximum Value delivered to the Customers without the customer bearing  unpredicted costs and risks
  • Maximum Service Value must be delivered to the customers
  • The use of 'resources' and 'capability' optimally
  • Offering services with the best utility and trusted warranty
  • Processes must be planned for specific objectives.
  • Roles must be clearly defined for tasks requiring collective efforts.

The following are the basic terminologies within the ITIL framework:

ITIL: Set of the best practices that must be adhered to Infrastructure service providers in IT Service Management. 

Service: Rendering and delivering the desired results to the customers while working within the given constraints.

Service Strategy:  A careful plan by the service provider to outperform competitive alternatives over time and through instances of change in leadership

Service Model: This is a description of service delivery and its components. 

Service Portfolio: A description of services rendered and service delivery components.

Customer Portfolio: A record of all the customers of the IT service provider is kept in a Customer Portfolio.

Operational Level Agreement (OLA): An agreement between the IT service provider and a different part of the same organization. 

SACM: Service Assets and Configuration Management is done to ensure up-to-date maintenance and verification of assets.

Incident: Any disruption in IT service delivery process

Problem: An unknown cause of one or multiple incidents

ITIL LifecycleITIL lifecycle

The current edition of ITIL is divided into five components or categories. It takes a holistic or lifecycle approach to provide the best practice in IT Service Management (ITSM). These are the core components of ITIL:

ITIL Service Strategy

ITIL Service Design

ITIL Service Transition

ITIL Service Operation

ITIL Continual Service Improvement

ITIL Service Strategy

This is the first stage of ITIL Lifecycles. In order to improve service management in a service providing organization, there must be a consistent service strategy. The service strategy must be in agreement with the business objectives of the customer and in addition to this managing services within its scope. The warranty at this stage of ITIL lifecycle is to ensure that the strategy is fit for purpose and use.

ITIL Service Design

This is the second stage in ITIL lifecycles. The service design stage provides a guidance on how to turn strategies, generated in the earlier (Service Strategy) stage into action. At this stage, services and processes are designed and plans are implemented for the purpose of better service management.

In service designs, four important areas should be taken into consideration. These are People, Processes, Products, and Partner otherwise known as the "Four Ps of Service Design".partner  product process

PeopleHuman resources and structures within the organization required to support the service.

ProcessesService Management Processes needs to support the service

Products: Technology and other infrastructures

PartnersA partner could be a third party rendering additional support geared towards the service

ITIL Service Transition

This is the third stage of the ITIL lifecycle. The core objective is building and deploying IT Services into a live environment in a coordinated manner. The design is built, tested and moved into the production side, so that the business customer can achieve the desired values. At this stage, IT professionals and business associates learn the importance of managing a change in a productive manner.

 ITIL Service Operation 

This is the fourth stage in ITIL. ITIL service operation cycle involves managing the services and processes that have been transitioned into a live environment. The Management components of ITIL Service Operation stage includes - Event Management, Incident Management, Request Fulfillment, Access Management, Problem Management, IT Operations control, and Facilities Management among others.

ITIL Continual Service Improvement (CSI)

This is the fifth and the last stage of ITIL lifecycle. This stage involves a holistic view of earlier stages with the view to check the key performance indicators and determining whether the service is running optimally. 

The objective of this stage is to learn from past success and failures using quality management methods. Lessons learned are then utilized to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of IT processes.

Using CSI, IT Service organizations can measure and improve on Service levels and Technology. CSI also guarantees that services will grow progressively into more and more profitable services.

Continual Service Improvement involves Service Review, Process Evaluation, CSI initiatives and Monitoring of CSI initiatives.

ITIL Processes

According to ITIL v3 Glossary, Process is defined as "a structured set of activities designed to accomplish a specific objective. A process takes one or more defined inputs and turns them into the required outputs. A process may include any of the roles and responsibilities, tools and management control required to reliably deliver the outputs. A process may define policies, standards, guidelines, activities and work instructions if they are needed"

There are 26 processes in ITIL. The processes are divided into a group of five under the ITIL lifecycles. For instance, ITIL Service Strategy has four processes.

Processes under ITIL Service Strategy 

Strategy Management Process - Involves resolving service failures, fixing problems and regular operational checks to ensure efficiency.

Service Portfolio Management - A service portfolio consists of all the services being managed by a Service Provider. Service Portfolio consists of 3 distinct parts - Service Pipeline, Service Catalog, and Retired Services. Service Portfolio Management oversees the process by which services are identified, described, evaluated and selected. 

Financial Management Process (for IT Services) - Provides the platform for managing the costs and other elements of finance. The process involves three key activities: Accounting, Budgeting, and Charging.

Demands Management Process - The demand manager role is to understand and influence customer demand. User Profile and Pattern of Business Activity are models considered in Demand Management.

Processes under ITIL Service Design 

Service Catalog Management - The management and control of the information regarding different services in the service catalog. 

Service Level Management – This is the process of securing and managing agreement between the Customer and the Service Provider. Service level Management is carried out at the Performance and Reliability Levels. Service Management at different levels gave rise to the Service Level Agreements 

Availability Management - Ensures that Availability Requirement in the Service Level Agreement is adhered to. 'Availability' is the ability of a system or service to perform its functions when needed.

Capacity Management - Capacity Management is carried out in three basic areas: Business Capacity, Service Capacity, and Component Capacity.

IT Service Continuity Management (ITSCM) - ITSCM makes sure that the Service Providers can always render the minimum, agreed-upon level of service.

IT Security Management - Involves the Management of Information Assets. It Manages the Confidentiality, Integrity, Availability, and Authenticity of Information Assets.

Supplier Management - The goal of this process of management is to ensure value for money from 3rd party suppliers. It is charged with the responsibility to Evaluate suppliers, Negotiate with suppliers, Review suppliers Performance, Renew or Terminate Contract with the Suppliers.

Processes under ITIL Service Transition

Change Management - The goal is to control the changes at all levels, thereby ensuring that beneficial changes are made with minimal disruption to IT Services. 

Change Evaluation - The goal of this process is the assessment of major changes, for instance, the introduction of a new service or a major change to the existing service. 

Project Management - This process is essential for planning and coordinating the use of resources.

Application Development - This process deals with the availability of applications and systems required for functionality of IT Services. 

Release and Deployment Management - The goal of this process is the planning, scheduling and controlling the movement of releases to the live environment.

Service Validation and Testing - This process ensures that the expectations of the customers are met.

Service Asset and Configuration Management - Maintains information about 

configuration items.

Knowledge Management - The process improves Knowledge efficiency thus reducing the need to rediscover knowledge.

Processes under ITIL Service Operation

Event Management - Involves the monitoring of CIs as well as the services and events categorization.

Incident Management - Manages the lifecycle of all the Incidents. It seeks to return IT services to the users as soon as possible.

Access Management - It grants authorization to the right users of a service. Access Management is also known as Identity or Rights Management.

Problem Management - This Process manages the life cycles of all the problems. Proactive measures are taken to analyze Incident Record in order to identify trends or significant problems. 

IT Operations Control - This involves the monitoring and control of IT Services in day-to-day routine tasks. 

Facilities Management - This process involves the management of the physical environment of IT Infrastructure.

Technical Management - This process involves the provision of useful technical expertise and support for the management of IT Infrastructure.

Benefits of adopting the ITIL framework

Business opportunities are constantly growing and with these opportunities, the challenge of confidentiality and service quality is growing at the same pace. IT Service providing organization are expected to work efficiently in order to meet and exceed service expectations. Hence, there is a need to adopt the ITIL Framework. 

The following are some of the benefits that your organization will gain by adopting ITIL.

  • Improve Return on Investment of IT
  • Greater bonding or alignment between IT and the business
  • Enhance Service Delivery and greater customer satisfaction
  • Reduces cost as a result of the efficient use of resources
  • Implementation of best practices to improve IT services
  • Improve relationship and interaction between IT Service Providers and their customers
  • Enhanced Ability to manage business risk and Service Disruption
  • Creating a stable service environment to support and keep pace with business change

ITIL: Where to start

Every organization is different, also the starting/implementation point for ITIL is different. You may not need every part of ITIL for your organization.

In Implementing ITIL, organizations should give preference to that part of ITIL which identifies the biggest problems of IT employees and Customers. Parts of ITIL that addresses these problems are Incident Management, Change Management, and Request Fulfillment. 

ITIL Implementation Roadmap

Your organization should create a roadmap as an implementation guide. Do not seek to adopt all the component of ITIL at once. Make ITIL adoption a long-term goal. Your roadmap must prioritize the improvement that you desire in your organization. 

If your IT staffs are not familiar with ITIL, you should include ITIL education program for all IT staff members. Constantly, refer to your ITIL implementation roadmap to be sure that you are on course.

Before you understand how to adopt ITIL at an organizational level, it is necessary to acquire basic ITIL skills and knowledge as an individual. A comprehensive ITIL® Foundation Certification training program, coupled with industry-relevant course materials can come in handy, especially if you intend to earn credits towards ITIL® expert certification ahead.

How to embrace ITIL as an organizationembracing ITIL in the arganization

  1.  Start by setting the right objectives

Your objectives must be chosen according to the need of the organization. What problem do you want to solve with ITIL? How can you improve the quality of your services to clients? 

  1.  Holistic Approach to all ITIL Stages

Some organization adopts ITIL in parts. It is better to embrace all the lifecycle stages of ITIL without neglecting relevant stages.

  1.  Manage Change and Resistance to Change 

Embracing ITIL involves a change in organizational behavior. Changes required by embracing ITIL will also encounter resistance from the staff who are used to performing tasks in certain ways. To avoid these bottlenecks, the organization needs to create a sense of urgency around the change required, promote the right vision and strategy, delegate responsibility, create short-term wins (success goals), and create a culture of change.

  1.  Continuous Training of IT Team 

The last state in ITIL is Continuous Service Improvement, to achieve this, your IT team in the organization must undergo continuous training until it has fully grasped the ITIL framework.

ITIL Today 

A look at the adoption of ITIL in the United States and Canada shows considerable similarities. However, Canada started earlier than the United States. Companies in North America are adopting ITIL in parts. They are particularly interested in the processes focused on Service Operation and Service Transition.

The introduction of Service Catalog gave ITIL a boost amongst the end-user services.

The current adoption levels in ITIL are the biggest proof of its relevance. AXELOS states that ‘over a million IT professionals in the US rely on ITIL’s best practice guidance to deliver business success […]As a reflection of this, the update will continue to include the widely-adopted core principles of ITIL.’ 

The Future of ITIL

ITIL Is looking forward to a few major changes in the new update. According to Peter Hepworth from AXELOS, ITIL v4 will shift its focus on:

  • Core Principle of Quality Service Management
  • A practical guide on how to use ITIL
  • How to Combine the use of ITIL with DevOps, Agile and Lean 

ITIL v4, an update to the current edition is due to be released in the 1st quarter of 2019. There will also be a sufficient crossover period between the current version and the new update in order to minimize the impact of day-to-day operations.

ITIL Certification Guide: Overview and career paths 

ITIL Certification Program Overview

ITIL is a leading framework for managing IT service delivery globally. ITIL consists of a lifecycle model that recommends specific processes and activities during the design, development, and delivery of IT Services. 

Since July 2013, AXELOS Ltd - a joint venture between the British Government's HM Cabinet Office and Capita Plc. took ownership of ITIL. This is responsible for developing the ITIL frameworks; accrediting training and examination institutes. There are hundreds of ITIL Accredited Training Organization (ATO) worldwide. 

ITIL has five (5) different certifications. These are 

  1. ITIL Foundation
  2. ITIL Practitioner
  3. ITIL Intermediate 
  4. ITIL Expert
  5. ITIL Master

ITIL uses a Credit System of Grading for the various level of Certification up till the expert level. You will need a total of 22 Credits to earn the ITIL Expert Certification. There are different requirements to wear the crown of ITIL Master Certification.

Benefits of ITIL to individuals

The IT industry is dynamic, thus making it difficult to catch up with the trends. Over the years ITIL has been established within the IT Service Management field. A standard framework or the best practices is a major need for IT professionals in IT services and IT Management.  ITIL best practices are important in the effective management of businesses. Organizations now require ITIL Certified professionals to scale up in the industry.

These are some of the benefits of being an ITIL certified professional

ITIL benefits

  1.  Recognition:

ITIL Certification is viewed as a standard benchmark of quality for IT professionals globally. IT Service Providers and Employers recognize the ITIL brand and any professional certified by ITIL. ITIL qualification is worth the effort and will help you in your career development. 

  1.   Proficiency in ITIL Terminologies and Vocabulary

ITIL has a name or term for most of the processes and activities in the IT World. There are professionals using IT service management processes without a clear understanding of the processes or terminologies. 

Through ITIL training and Certification, you will learn the common language/terms in IT Service Management. This, in turn, facilitates better communication with other professionals.

  1.  Build a dynamic and strong employee-customer relationship

The success of entities in IT Services is strongly tied to its personnel. Personnel with appropriate competencies, skills, and experience will thrive better in the industry. ITIL training will help you to gain more confidence, competence, and will improve service delivery to customers.

  1.  The culture of Thinking out of the Box

ITIL training will stretch your mind. You are trained to be flexible and encouraged to think out of the box - to come up with new creative ways of working to improve customer satisfaction. ITIL training scheme will help you to contribute effectively to the process of IT Service delivery.

  1.  Better Job Prospects

As expected of any good certification, ITIL will enhance your job prospect. Organizations are finding a smarter way to demonstrate value in the workplace. With ITIL, you will be able to contribute constructively and effectively in the ITIL Service Management processes.  

Benefits of ITIL to Organizations/Businesses

In addition to the benefits enumerated earlier, there are other benefits of ITIL lifecycles as it relates to an organization.

ITIL Service Strategy will help your organization to understand the customers and develop and deliver IT Services that meet their expectation. Your organization will have satisfied customers.

Through ITIL Service Design, your organization will be able to design an efficient and cost-effective service.

ITIL Service Transition will advise and guide your organization on building and testing the service designs. 

Another benefit of ITIL to your organization is that it will be equipped to deliver and manage any service.

ITIL CSI will furnish your organization with the mechanism for constant service improvement.

What is ITIL certification and is it worth to take this?

ITIL certification is a modular approach to the ITIL framework. It consists of a series of different qualifications with a focus on different aspect of ITIL best practices. The degree and depth of details vary at the various level of certification. 

Holding a professional IT Certification in a competitive marketplace is a great advantage over those that are not certified. ITIL is the standard benchmark in IT practices. ITIL Certification convinces a prospective employer that you have an understanding of the ITIL framework, how it fits together and its application in a business environment.

ITIL Certification also entails that you have been trained in the five major areas that drive the IT Lifecycle.

There are five distinct levels of ITIL Certification - Foundation, Practitioner, Intermediate, Expert, and Master.

Levels of ITIL Certification

levels of ITIL certification

ITIL Foundation Certification

ITIL Foundation is the basic in ITIL certifications. It covers the basics of ITIL practice areas. It is the entry level that offers a general awareness, concepts, and terminologies within the ITIL lifecycles. 

It is designed for those who require a basic understanding of the ITIL framework. Foundation certification will be helpful to those who need an understanding of how to use ITIL to enhance IT Service Management.

There are no prerequisites for this level of certification. Anyone who is interested in IT Service Management can apply. However, you will need higher certifications before you can qualify for IT Service Management Positions.

Surviving and sustaining in a VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) project environment as a beginner will no longer be challenging if you utilize the maximum benefits from an expert-authored ITIL® Foundation Certification Training Program.

ITIL Practitioner

This is the next level in the ITIL Scheme. Newly introduced, the first examination at this level was conducted in 2016. It was developed to provide a step between the foundation and intermediate level of certifications. 

An ITIL Practitioner will be able to explain how to adopt the ITIL Framework to support the business objective while focusing on organizational change management, communications, measurement, and metrics.

This certification can be taken at any level beyond Foundation. This is because the skills covered are not in the existing certifications. 

ITIL practitioner follows 9 Guiding Principles

  • Focus on value
  • Design for Experience
  • Start where you are
  • Work holistically
  • Progressive iteratively
  • Observe directly
  • Be transparent
  • Collaborate
  • Keep it simple

A professional intending to take ITIL Practitioner exam must hold a current ITIL Foundation Certificate. ITIL practitioner is NOT a prerequisite for the ITIL Intermediate Level certification. ITIL Practitioner certification will help you to earn three (3) Credits towards ITIL Expert Certification.

The examination consists of 40 multiple choice questions. You are required to pass 28 i.e. score 70%.

ITIL Intermediate Level Certification

ITIL Intermediate certification is structured as modules and each module focuses on different areas of IT Service Management. You can take as many intermediate qualifications as you need. The modules are either classified as Service Lifecycle or Service Capability

In the Service Lifecycle modules we have:

  • Service Strategy,
  • Service Design,
  • Service Transition, 
  • Service Operation, 
  • Continual Service Improvement.

The Service Capability modules consist of:

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

ITIL Intermediate certification can be taken by anyone who has passed the ITIL Foundation exam. It is a recommendation that you should have at least 2 years of professional experience working in IT Service Management before attempting the ITIL Intermediate Certification Exam.

ITIL Expert Certification

ITIL Expert is an advanced certification. It covers the breadth and depth of ITIL processes and practices across-board ITIL professions. ITIL Expert Certification is aimed at IT Service Professionals who are willing to demonstrate holistic ITIL Scheme knowledge. This certification is awarded only to those candidates who have excelled in a range of ITIL certification and possess superior knowledge and skill in ITIL Best Practices. 

There are key requirements before you can qualify for ITIL Expert Certification:

  • Candidates must hold the ITIL Foundation certificate or a Bridge certification equivalent.
  • You must have earned a minimum total of 17 credits from the Foundation and Intermediate modules.
  • Some credits from earlier qualifications and complementary certifications can also count towards these 17 credits.
  • You must attempt and Pass the Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) module with a minimum score of 70% to achieve a total of 22 credits required for the ITIL Expert certificate.

 ITIL Expert is a prerequisite to the highest level of ITIL Certification - the ITIL Master.

ITIL Master Certification 

ITIL Master is the zenith of ITIL Certifications. It demonstrates the application of ITIL framework and best practices in real-life situations. ITIL Master covers all areas of ITIL Principles from Foundation through Expert Level Certifications.

Candidates must explain and justify how they have selected and applied a range of knowledge, principles, and methods from ITIL Management techniques in order to achieve ITIL Master.

In addition, an ITIL Master must:

  • Have a current ITIL Expert Certification
  • Possess five years of ITIL experience in Management or Leadership
  • Submit a proposal for service improvement
  • Be successful in an Interview with the ITIL Assessment Panel.

In a view of the stringent nature, the cost of ITIL Master certification is approximately $40,000. So, this certification needs seriousness and a high-level of dedication. 

Why do you need to attend ITIL training to take the exam?

ITIL training is not compulsory or required before taking the ITIL Foundation Certification Exam. Candidates can source free materials online such as the TSO Foundation pass guide.

Subsequently, ITIL Certification will require mandatory training.

Types of Training

A candidate can take ITIL classroom training for ITIL courses. The training could also be offered in a "virtual classroom". All activities in a virtual classroom will be similar to a live classroom except that training will be done remotely.

There are also online training - e-learning, Computer-based training/ self-paced/ distance learning.

You should research diligently before deciding which type of training is best for you. All the trainings are accredited against the same standards. 

In the United Kingdom, delegates lean toward the classroom style of training whereas in the US most of the delegates prefer online training.

You can find Accredited Training Organizations (ATO) here.

Who should take ITIL Certification?

ITIL Certification is suitable for Professionals who desire to bring positive changes to their organization.

IT Managers and Directors - A certification in ITIL is a valuable credential for IT Project Managers.

IT Service-support Engineers may never become ITIL Masters but a basic knowledge of the ITIL framework can provide support for the ITIL process.

Other Professionals who could take the ITIL course and Certification to advance in their professions are:

  • Technical Support Professionals in IT Services
  • Quality Analysts
  • Operations Managers
  • Database Administrators
  • Business Owners

ITIL related jobs and careers

There is more than one way to build a career in IT Industry, this is largely dependent on your experience and expertise. IT is becoming a critical part of most businesses including small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Job roles and description varies among employers. Here are some ITIL related jobs and careers.

  • Business Relationship Manager
  • Cyber Resilience Consultant
  • Service Level Manager
  • IT Architect
  • IT Security Architect
  • Business Continuity Manager
  • Supplier Relationship Manager
  • Release Manager
  • IT Change Manager
  • IT Configuration Manager
  • Cyber Resilience Manager
  • Cyber Resilience Auditor
  • Service Desk Technician
  • Service Desk Manager
  • IT Support Technician
  • Application Support Specialist
  • Hardware Support Specialist
  • Network Support Specialist
  • Security Analyst
  • Incident Manager
  • IT Operations Manager
  • IT Project Manager
  • IT Programme Manager
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Chief Technology Officer
  • Chief Information Security Officer

Conclusion

The valuable contributions of ITIL Framework to business growth and IT professionals' career has established ITIL in the zenith of IT Service Management (ITSM). ITIL adoption and implementation by businesses on the rise as well. 

Thus, ITIL Certification is a valuable skill for any IT professional who wants to remain relevant in the IT Service Delivery and Management. 

Today is the best day to consider taking an ITIL Certification!

KnowledgeHut

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Author

KnowledgeHut is a fast growing Management Consulting and Training firm that is a source of Intelligent Information support for businesses and professionals across the globe.


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Service Transition: ITIL service transition guidelines address the activities aligned to change evaluation, change management, project management, application development, release and deployment management, service validation, service assets management, knowledge management etc.  4.Service Operation: ITIL service operation guidelines address the activities aligned to event management, incident management, request fulfilment, access management, problem management, IT operations control, facilities management, application management, technical management etc.  5. Continuous Improvement: ITIL continuous improvement guidelines define the roadmap to manage service review, process evaluation, CSI initiatives and monitoring of CSI initiatives.  What Are The Benefits Of ITIL Implementation? The growing demand of ITIL professionals all across the world proves that the IT industries are experiencing the tremendous benefits of ITIL framework. The following 6 benefits of ITIL are experienced by the majority of IT services providers:   Better product delivery and enhanced customer satisfaction Better understanding between the IT and business Better risk management with a wider scope Better service management to accommodate business changes Better assessment of costs & assets Better cost management because of optimum utilization of in-house resources I am very excited about where the #ITIL Update is going in regards to introducing the concept of Systems Thinking! Finally going to see the integration of both Service Management & Build Practices! https://t.co/uMfS2OQZJh — Troy DuMoulin (@TroyDuMoulin) April 18, 2018   What are the ITIL Certification Levels?  The 5-tiered structure of ITIL certification offers the candidates a much-desired flexibility relating to different areas of application. There are five levels of qualifications within the ITIL Qualification Scheme, as mentioned below: Foundation Level - The entry-level ITIL certification helps you understand all the terminologies, concepts and elements of ITIL service lifecycle. It helps you implement ITIL practices to streamline the processes for consistent improvement. ITIL Foundation Certification gives you 2 credits toward ITIL Expert certification. Practitioner Level: The next level after the foundation certification; It helps you improve the ability to follow ITIL framework. It imparts perfection to adopt and adapt ITSM system to support the business objectives. Encompassing all the three key areas for successful of improvement initiatives, namely communication, organizational change management, and measurement / metrics, ITIL Practitioner derives the comprehensive method for Continual Service Improvement (CSI). Intermediate Level: The next to practitioner level; ITIL Intermediate Service Operation Training provides you deep insights into the modular structure comprising of different modules focused on IT service management. ITIL Intermediate certification refines your perfection in service operation, technology considerations and managing the critical success factors. Expert Level: The next to intermediate level, expert-level ITIL certification is designed for the professionals interested to demonstrate their ITIL Scheme knowledge in its entirety. It needs you to have deep insights in ITIL best practices besides the ITIL Intermediate certification.   Master Level: It is the most advanced ITIL certification designed for the ITIL experts with proven experience of selecting and applying the range of ITIL principles, methods & techniques to derive the best outcomes. To get the Master Level certification, you need the have five years’ experience in leadership, managerial, or higher management advisory positions. As said above, ITIL qualification gives you more numbers of options to choose the best-designed course/training tailored to your career plans. Other than traditional certification courses, you may opt for specific and purpose-oriented short term courses also like ITIL Intermediate Service Strategy Training, ITIL Intermediate Service Transition Training, ITIL Intermediate Operational Support and Analysis etc.  What are the Career Prospects after Having ITIL certification?  ITIL is tied to ISO/IEC 20000 norms; as more and more organizations are trying to become ISO/IEC 20000 certified, the demand for ITIL certified professionals is bound to go high. The hundreds of companies and top brands in diverse sectors including finance, retail, IT, technology, entertainment, manufacturing, medical etc have adopted ITIL framework; and many more are going to adopt it. The top brands relying on ITIL include Boeing, Sony, Honda, Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, Citibank, Barclays, Disney, Toyota, Pfizer, Bank of America etc. Combining the ITIL certification with other project management certifications significantly increases the salary range. BusinessWire predicts that the ITSM industry will grow from $4.4 billion in 2016 to $8.78 billion in 2021. CRN Magazine included ITIL certification among the top 15 certifications that boost your career dramatically.  ITIL Summary to Conclude:  The globally acknowledged ITIL qualification is going to be the most desired prerequisite for IT project manager jobs in 2018 and after. The above detailed ITIL concepts, core components, benefits and career scope make it simple to understand why the ITIL certification is the most preferred choice of experienced IT professionals poised to boost their competency level. ITIL certification ensures that all the team members understand all the aspects of service management holistically and not just the tasks assigned to them. The online and classroom trainings for different level ITIL certification, as conducted by KnowledgeHut, are of great help for ITIL certification preparation; so, don’t wait – explore your options.
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ITIL Key Concepts And Summary Of Processes- A Comp...

What is ITIL?    ITIL, the acronym for ‘Inf... Read More

Microsoft Project - Complete Guide For Beginners

Introduction A project is a specific set of operations that is created to meet a single goal and the application of knowledge, practices, skills and tools in order to meet this specific set of goals and certain specific requirements is known as Project Management. It is a specialized career path, generally involves working in a team and is a much respected profession in the corporate world. The rapid worldwide growth of Project Management demanded a dedicated software to assist its supervision and Microsoft Office Project or MS Project as it is most often known, caters to the need quite efficiently. About MS Project Project Management is a complex and multifaceted process and MS Project is a project management software program developed and sold by Microsoft. It is a very convenient-to-use tool that project managers across the globe vouch for. Microsoft is helping project managers in the following tasks: • Creating schedules • Assigning resources to tasks • Tracking progress • Managing budgets • Evaluating workload It creates specific budgets depending upon the work assigned and rates demanded by resources. While assignment of resources to tasks and work estimation takes place, MS Project gets into cost calculation for task level and culminates at the project level. Every resource can possess a separate calendar that explains particular days and shifts during which a specific resource is available. MS Project is a feature heavy software and automates a majority of tasks. However, it does have a few constraints and is unable to replicate human thinking. Remember, Microsoft Project can create a practical schedule for the project but it cannot create a plan and most managers are unable to distinguish between the two. For example, a Project Manager has to provide solutions to the following questions: • How much will it cost to complete each task? • What sort of resources will be needed to accomplish each task? Is it Man, machine or material? • Are there any specific time deadlines and constraints for the project or individual tasks? • Is there a defined order while completing tasks and how are the tasks defined? Microsoft Project is capable of creating more than just a schedule as it can: ✓ Form dependencies within tasks ✓ Solve resource conflicts ✓ Create Constraints ✓ Review costs and schedule performances MS Project training helps project managers in envisaging their project in standard defined layouts. By using this software, it is possible to schedule tasks and resources in a fairly reliable and effective manner. Project Managers can rely on it when it is essential to track information about the work, time taken for individual tasks and also assessing the resource needs for the project. Another important and time-consuming task the MS Project handles in an efficient manner is the generation of reports that are required during regular progress meetings. What does Microsoft Project look like? The Microsoft Project interface includes the following: Quick Access Toolbar: A customizable area that allows commonly used commands to be added for quick use. Tabs on the Ribbons & Groups: A part of the “Fluent User Interface”, this “office menu” is a single tool bar that has a ribbon having various tabs, where every tab contains a toolbar button and at times, other controls too. Toolbar controls have assorted sizes and are divided into visually distinct groups, which are essentially a group of related commands. Commands: Each tabs includes various commands, which when pointed at, unfurl a description inside a tooltip. These commands are basically specific features one utilises to perform different actions in MS Project. Zoom Slider: Helps in zooming the view in or out View Shortcuts: Allows quick and easy switching between commonly used views in the project View Label: This tab is located along the left side of the active view and contains various views like Task Usage view, Gantt chart view, network diagram view, amongst various others. Microsoft Project is capable is displaying single or multiple views in individual panes. Status Bar: Shows details like scheduling mode of tasks (automatic or manual) and specifics of filters applied to the active view. Advantages and Disadvantages of Microsoft Office Project Advantages: MS Project is a highly flexible application that offers multiple tools that help in the management of projects in government institutions, business firms and construction organizations. The planning, allocating and collection of resources for different tasks becomes fairly simple and easy with the use of MS Project. It helps project managers to estimate budgets accurately so that the right amount of money is set aside for the project and for contingencies too. Disadvantages: It is prudent to realise that MS Project, though it is designed to allow multiple users to work in congruence, it takes a longer time to train people with different learning pace and the training itself could turn out to be an expensive affair. Summary: Microsoft Office Project is a suite of tools to help in efficient project management and is used in industries like pharmaceuticals, construction, manufacturing, retail, healthcare and financial services to name a few. Contractors and project managers are able to have better control over their finances and resources and is integrated with Microsoft office suite along with a Client Access Licence for quick connectivity with Office Project Server.
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Microsoft Project - Complete Guide For Beginners

Introduction A project is a specific set of ope... Read More