How to become a Certified ITIL Expert

How to become a Certified ITIL Expert?

Last updated on 05th Oct 2020, Artciles, Blog

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The ITIL Expert level certification is aimed at those who are interested in demonstrating knowledge of the ITIL Scheme in its entirety. The certificate is awarded to candidates who have achieved a range of ITIL certifications and have achieved a well rounded, superior knowledge and skills base in ITIL Best Practices. This certification will benefit you in both your personal and professional development, by aiding career advancement and progress within the IT Service Management field.

You also need to achieve the ITIL Expert certificate if you want to progress to the ITIL Master level, which is the highest and final certification within the ITIL scheme.

End learners who achieve Expert level from the current ITIL v3 credit system will be able to take the ITIL Managing Professional (ITIL MP) transition module as soon as it is released (second half 2019) to achieve the ITIL MP designation. The ITIL MP transition module will integrate and expand part of the specialized knowledge for managing and delivering quality Service Management practices acquired from the ITIL Intermediate modules.

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Once the ITIL MP designation has been achieved, end learners are only one step away from achieving the designation which focuses on how IT influences and directs business strategy.

Route to ITIL Expert certification :

There are many possible combinations of modules from the ITIL framework available to those wishing to attain the ITIL Expert certificate, but there are some key requirements:

  • End learners must hold the ITIL v3 Foundation* certificate or ITIL 4 Foundation certificate
  • End learners 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. See the ITIL Credit System page for more information.
  • The Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) module must then be taken and passed to achieve a total of 22 credits, which is the minimum required for the ITIL Expert certificate.

*ITIL v2 Foundation + v3 Bridge will be accepted until ITIL v3 has been discontinued.

Once you have successfully completed all ITIL modules required and have earned sufficient credits, you will have achieved a balanced knowledge across the full ITIL service lifecycle and can be awarded the ITIL Expert certificate.

While candidates can earn 17 credits through various learning paths leveraging any combination of the Foundation and Intermediate courses, the experience of trainers worldwide has shown that students wishing to pursue the Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) module benefit from taking the Continual Service Improvement and Service Strategy modules from the ITIL Intermediate certification scheme as part of their learning path.

Candidates who hold the earlier Service Manager or Practitioner qualifications can use these certificates towards the ITIL Expert certificate. See the earlier certifications section for more information.

MALC Exam :

The MALC module sits between the Intermediate and Expert certifications and is the final required certification towards gaining Expert status. It is intended to help you apply and integrate your knowledge of ITIL in real-world settings and in your own workplace.

Booking an exam where prerequisites apply :

Please ensure that before you book an exam where a prerequisite is required, that you hold verified proof of completion of that prerequisite (i.e. certificate, or letter from AXELOS or former Examination Institute confirming you hold a current certification). Your examination results will be withheld until the correct prerequisite is provided to PeopleCert. If you are unable to provide the required prerequisite, then you will need to successfully complete the prerequisite before the higher-level exam result is released.

MALC Examination Format :

  • Multiple choice examination questions
  • 10 questions per paper
  • 35 marks required to pass (out of 50 available) – 70%
  • 120 minutes’ duration

Levels of ITIL certification

There are five levels of ITIL certification. Namely: ITIL Foundation, ITIL Practitioner, ITIL Intermediate, ITIL Expert, ITIL Master

By becoming a certified ITIL expert you get many new and higher-paying opportunities. An ITIL Expert certification also gives you an edge over others.

In India, the average salary of an ITIL expert is around 8 lakhs per annum and after doing an ITIL certification, you get a chance of augmenting your salary by 10-12 percent.

Nowadays even organizations prefer hiring individuals with a valid ITIL certificate as it is believed that the ITIL certified individuals are well-groomed for the IT industry.

ITIL Framework and ITIL Modules

Before understanding how to become an ITIL expert, let’s have a good understanding of the different ITIL modules:

The ITIL framework: If you are aiming for an ITIL certification then you must possess a clear understanding of the different life cycles of ITIL. Let’s check the different ITIL modules

  1. 1. ITIL service strategy: Helps IT organizations to develop over the long term

It consists of:

  • Strategy Management
  • Service Portfolio Management
  • IT Financial Management
  • Demand Management
  • Business Relationship Management
  1. 1. ITIL Service Design: It orients around 4 Ps which stands for:
  1. 1. People: This refers to the people, skills and competencies involved in the provision of IT services
  2. 2. Products: This refers to the technology and management systems used in IT service delivery
  3. 3. Processes: This refers to the processes, roles and activities involved in the provision of IT services
  4. 4. Partners: This refers to the vendors, manufacturers and suppliers that are used to assist and support IT service provision

Key Processes of ITIL Service Design:

The key processes of ITIL service design are as follows.

  • Service Catalogue Management
  • Service Level Management
  • Capacity Management
  • Availability Management
  • Information Security Management
  • Supplier Management

ITIL Service Transition: This module ensures that changes to services and service management processes are carried out in a coordinated way. ITIL service transition consists of Change Management, Change Evaluation, Project Management, Application Development, Release and Deployment Management, Service Validation and Testing, Service Asset and Configuration Management, Knowledge Management

Service operation monitors that IT services are delivered effectively.

It consists of event management, incident management, problem management, request fulfillment, access management

ITIL Continual Service Improvement: This is also termed as CSI and refers to the method of executing opportunities to make IT processes and services better.

A Step by Step Guide to Become an ITIL Expert

  • To begin with, you must possess the ITIL v3 Foundation* certification or ITIL 4 Foundation certification
  • You should earn a minimum total of 17 credits from the ITIL Foundation and ITIL Intermediate modules. Remember, clearing the ITIL foundation exam gives you 2 credits. Then you can take up the ITIL lifecycle and capability classes. Clearing the ITIL lifecycle gives you 3 credits while clearing the capability gives you 4 credits
  • For more information, you can obtain knowledge from the ITIL Credit System page for obtaining more information.
  • You need to pass The Managing across the Lifecycle (MALC) exam to achieve a total of 22 credits, which is the minimum score required for the ITIL Expert certificate.

MALC exam consists of a multiple-choice question and around 70% is needed to pass. The exam is of 120 minutes duration.

Post completing all ITIL modules and after earning sufficient credits, you will be awarded the ITIL Expert certificate.

Hence in order to become an ITIL expert, you need to pass a total of 7 exams

Tips to clear ITIL exam (MALC exam) and get ITIL expert certification:

  • Self-study can be helpful
  • Practice the free sample papers
  • Consider taking guidance from an expert.
  • Enroll in an ITIL training institute to seek guidance and assistance

The ITIL Expert certification is aimed at those who have gained superior knowledge and comprehended the best practices.

While it may be a sound decision to acquire an ITIL expert certification to find new opportunities, getting an ITIL certification may not be a cakewalk.

An ITIL Expert certification needs dedication, sincere efforts, and a well-planned strategy to ace the exam. You may consider taking ITIL certification training from a reputed institute to help you in the preparation process and to aid you with the tips and techniques.

ITIL Foundation certification

The ITIL Foundation certification covers the basics of ITIL and is where most newbies start the process of learning ITIL and becoming certified. The certification has no prerequisites, and anyone with an interest in the subject matter can sit for this exam. ITIL Foundation certification exam prep can be accomplished via classroom or distance learning options, as well as via self-study. There is no requirement for you to complete a training course before you sit for the Foundations exam. The Foundation exam consists of 40 multiple-choice questions that must be answered in 60 minutes with a grade of 65 percent, or 26 correct answers, required to pass the exam.

Although the certification covers all the five practice areas of the ITIL service lifecycle, including how the different lifecycle stages are linked to one another, an IT pro who completes the ITIL Foundation level will likely need to complete the Practitioner or Intermediate certification before being able to qualify for service management positions.

ITIL Practitioner

The ITIL Practitioner certification is the newest entry to the ITIL certification scheme. This exam was offered for the first time in February 2016. As the name implies, the ITIL Practitioner certification is based on practical knowledge of ITIL processes and how those principles are implemented in the real world. An ITIL Practitioner can explain how to use the ITIL framework to support business objectives and focuses on organizational change management, communications, and measurement and metrics.

The ITIL Practitioner is considered the next step in the ITIL progression after achieving the ITIL Foundation (which is a prerequisite). It emphasizes the ability to adopt, adapt and apply ITIL concepts in an organization. Although the Practitioner certification is not required for upper-level ITIL credentials, achieving Practitioner certification provides three credits toward ITIL Expert certification. You can prepare for the Practitioner exam through self-study, in-person classroom learning or online and distance learning options. The Practitioner exam is 40 multiple-choice questions and requires a minimum score of 70 percent, or 28 correct answers,  to pass.

ITIL Intermediate

The ITIL Intermediate certification is module-based, each of which focuses on a different aspect of IT service management. Relevant modules are categorized as either Service Lifecycle or 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)

To enable candidates to meet their own career goals, AXELOS lets you achieve qualification in one category or by choosing modules from both categories. AXELOS recommends that you have at least two years of IT service management experience. Note that you must complete your Intermediate exam preparation by completing a training course offered by an accredited training organization (ATO), i.e., you cannot self-study then sit for the Intermediate exam.

ITIL Expert

The ITIL Expert is an advanced certification that encompasses the breadth and depth of ITIL processes and practices across all ITIL disciplines. ITIL Expert certification is a prerequisite for the ITIL Master certification.

To qualify for the ITIL Expert, you must obtain at least 17 credits from the Foundation, Practitioner and Intermediate modules, and pass the Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) exam, earning a total of 22 credits.

ITIL Master

The pinnacle ITIL Master certification demonstrates an ability to apply the ITIL framework in real-world situations. The ITIL Master encompasses all ITIL principles and processes covered in the Foundation through Expert certifications. An ITIL Master must demonstrate complete mastery of the ITIL framework by completing the following:

  • Achieve the ITIL Expert certification
  • Demonstrate at least five years of ITIL experience in a management or leadership role
  • Submit a proposal for a service improvement
  • Submit a work package that demonstrates your ability to apply ITIL principles to a real-world business case, including positive impacts to a business service
  • Successfully complete an interview with an ITIL assessment panel

The cost of the ITIL Master runs about $4,000, which you pay after an EI accepts your initial application. Given the expense of this certification and its stringent requirements, only serious candidates should pursue the ITIL Master. That said, earning this certification indicates you’ve reached the highest level of achievement in your field.

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ITIL-related jobs and careers

IT professionals who possess an ITIL certification have always been valued by large corporations who have adopted the ITIL framework as an internal IT standard. What is beginning to change is ITIL’s increasing proliferation. Many small- and medium-sized businesses also now recognize the value of employees with ITIL certifications under their collective belts.

As IT becomes more important, SMBs are realizing the biggest benefits of maintaining ITIL-trained personnel on staff. Though no company wants to see IT projects fail, larger companies can usually absorb the loss of productivity, time and money that accompanies a failed IT service project. SMBs may not have the financial luxury of allowing an important IT project to fail owing to poor management and lack of processes. Thus, the value of an ITIL certification may be greater for enlightened companies that cannot afford IT project failures.

The good news about ITIL certification is that it is a valuable skill for almost any IT professional, from system administrators to chief information officers (CIOs). Many large companies have dedicated ITIL coaches or mentors who help shepherd projects through the various steps of the ITIL framework. These ITIL gurus have a wide understanding of the IT landscape and can usually spot trouble with a service design document or implementation plan in a matter of minutes.

ITIL certification is also a valuable credential for IT project managers, who are in the IT service trenches every day. Most project managers are already familiar with the development lifecycle process, so the principles of ITIL come naturally to them. IT managers, architects and engineers might not ever become ITIL Masters, but even a basic knowledge of the ITIL framework can assist with understanding and supporting the ITIL process.

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