When should I consider taking the ITIL Practitioner Certification?


Since the release of the new qualification, I’ve been approached by many students as to when they should consider taking the qualification. Should they do this before or after an intermediate certification, or should they consider this after achieving the ITIL expert certification?

These are all very good questions and I’m sure many people around the service management world are already thinking about, when to take this new certification.

In my personal experience, I think students do not achieve the ITIL Expert status over a short period, normally this is a journey which could take students over a year. Students need to take all the relevant intermediate certifications along with the Managing Across the Lifecycle certification to become an ITIL Expert. So should we tell students to wait until they become an ITIL Expert? I would say No.

I would select an intermediate certification which closely matches your role or area that you are looking to adapt and adopt ITIL best practices, and then closely follow this with an ITIL Practitioner Certification to gain the practical skills to put that knowledge into practice. Of course the ITIL Practitioner can be taken before or after that ITIL intermediate certification.

To give you an example, I recently advised a student who was doing a role of service level management in their organization to take the ITIL Practitioner either before or after their ITIL Service Design Lifecycle course which they already had booked. My personal opinion is for students to do the ITIL Practitioner after the ITIL intermediate that closely matches their role. I feel learning the knowledge and then learning how to put it into practice works really well. However, either way is fine and it all comes down to personal preferences.

If you have no interest in moving towards the intermediate certifications, I would still recommend you take this certification after your ITIL Foundation, not only to gain practical knowledge, but also to maximize the investment you made in taking the ITIL Foundation Certification. On a previous blog, I mentioned that organizations are asking questions about the return on investment in ITIL training and I would recommend taking the ITIL Practitioner before you end your ITIL certification journey.

Get more insight on ITIL Best Practices (video) and check out the wide range of ITIL courses Learning Tree offers.

Hitesh Patel

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