ITIL is the Bible of IT. As a set of best practices pertaining to IT services and lifecycle management, it is hard to beat, and there is a good reason why ITIL certification is sought out so often. The practices are designed to be no-nonsense and help companies identify areas of improvement, providing vendor-neutral guidelines by which to do it. Rich Hein explains for CIO.com how ITIL certification exists today and how you can get involved with it.
He begins by first providing a brief history of ITIL through its various iterations since its 1980s conception in the United Kingdom’s Central Communications and Telecommunications Agency. ITIL was most recently updated in July of 2011, and this version is the focus of the article. Hein identifies the ITIL Credit System, which is a system by which certifications are given specific credit values that qualify applicants to then test for higher levels of certification. The five levels of certification are ITIL Foundation, ITIL Intermediate Level, ITIL Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC), ITIL Expert Level, and finally ITIL Master Qualification. In addition to the five main levels of certification, credits can also be used toward other certifications called IT Complementary Qualifications, which focus on more specific areas of expertise. Exams themselves are provided at Foundation, Practitioner, and Manager levels and are managed by the ITIL Certification Management Board.
As far as actually knowing where to go to take these certification courses, Hein says:
There are a number of Accredited Training Organizations (ATOs)—those that have been fully accredited by an approved Examination Institute)—that provide ITIL certification courses, both online and in person.
Additionally, there are many examination institutes (EI) that are accredited by APMG. These examination institutes are allowed to provide an ITIL examination scheme through specific accredited training organizations, and accredited trainers with accredited materials. A list of official Examination Institutes (EI) is also provided by the official ITIL site.
ITIL sample exams are also available online for practice.
By its comprehensive nature and because of how many types of certification exist, ITIL offers something for all IT professionals to enhance their skill sets and augment what they already know. Just like the actual Bible, ITIL can sometimes be a challenge to navigate, but Rich Hein sees to it that you find your way.