The new ITIL Practitioner cert from AXELOS is coming
Posted on
July 2, 2015
AXELOS is preparing a new ITIL cert.

AXELOS is the U.K. enterprise that owns the Global Best Practice portfolio, including ITIL�, PRINCE2�, and the other PPM products. ITIL is the most popular and utilized service management framework in the industry. There are currently more than 2 million ITIL certifications worldwide; 300,000 were earned in 2014 alone.

On March 13, at the ITSM Leadership Congress in Singapore, AXELOS announced their intention to launch a new certification, ITIL Practitioner. As part of our neverending quest to bring you, our faithful readers, the latest and greatest news in IT certification, CertMag decided to touch base with AXELOS to see how things are coming along, and exchanged emails with Practitioner Architect Lou Hunnebeck for an update. Here's the scoop:

Q: Congratulations on the release of AXELOS' ITIL Practitioner Certification.

Let's not get ahead of ourselves. This certification hasn't been released yet. In February an announcement was made by AXELOS that they are developing an ITIL Practitioner Certification and that is what we are working on doing right now. Release is planned for the fourth quarter of this year.

Q: Sorry about that. Didn't mean to jump-the-gun there "� we're just excited. So what exactly is Practitioner designed to authenticate?

This qualification is intended to demonstrate that candidates have learned a set of skills that we consider to be essential for the practical application in the real world of the best practices described in ITIL. The skills to be taught in the associated course and tested in the certification are not by any means "all" the skills necessary for such practical application, but will represent a solid foundation for a practitioner to start with and build upon.

Q: AXELOS already has four other ITIL certifications. Why Practitioner? What specific needs did you identify?

Actually, we have many more than four. We have one Foundation cert, nine Intermediate certs, the capstone certification (Managing Across the Lifecycle [MALC] that concludes an ITIL Expert cert), and then some may continue to achieve ITIL Master Qualification.

That said, through their research in the ITIL and ITSM community, speaking with practitioners, ATOs, EIs and organizations using ITIL, AXELOS recognized what many have been saying for a long time. Foundation is an excellent overview of the basic concepts, principles and structure of ITIL, but by its very nature it cannot cover details of "how."

The Intermediate offerings, on the other end of the spectrum, are focused on groups of processes and on specific lifecycle stages, broadening and deepening candidates' understanding of the ITIL best practices, but in many ways too specific to cover the more general skills that would be relevant to applying any of the best practices. The need expressed was for information that would be useful to "get started"� in a practical way, even though the candidate may not yet have done deep dives into the best practices like those experienced in the Intermediate offerings.

Q: ITIL Practitioner is going to slot between Foundation and Intermediate. In what ways is it different?

It's focused on practical application skills that are beyond Foundation, but nowhere near the depth of Intermediate or MALC.

Keep in mind, Practitioner will "not" be a prerequisite for Intermediate classes. Some candidates may choose to take it prior to attending any Intermediates, but others may not. And some persons who have already taken one or more Intermediate classes may choose to take Practitioner.

Q: What sorts of IT professionals will benefit from ITIL Practitioner?

Practitioner is intended to primarily serve persons who have acquired a Foundation-level knowledge of ITIL best practices, and are looking to understand, in a more specific way, what type of actions they can take to begin to apply the best practices in their own organization. Candidates for ITIL Practitioner must hold an ITIL Foundation certificate as a prerequisite.

Q: How long does it take to develop a new cert like Practitioner? What is involved in the process?

This work is happening now. I refer you to the webinars delivered the last week of May describing what we have accomplished so far.

Q: Please describe AXELOS' vetting process. How do you determine whether a new cert will provide certificate holders with the skills needed to deliver effective, efficient solutions in the workplace?

I'm not sure of what you mean by "vetting process" in this context. If you are asking how we test practical skills, that is the challenge that the Practitioner Architect Team is currently working to address, in partnership with AXELOS' talented and experienced Exam development team.

Right now we anticipate using one or more case studies with additional detail provided in scenarios to provide practical context for the exam questions. In this way we will provide candidates the opportunity to demonstrate that they not only grasp the concepts, but can apply them to real-world situations.

Q: Can you give us some info on the cost, exam format, prerequisites, and so forth of Practitioner?

Cost is dependent on the ATO offering the training. I believe that the exam price has not been set yet. ITIL Foundation is a pre-req.

Q: Are there any recertification requirements?

At this time AXELOS has not yet imposed any recertification requirements on any ITIL certs.

ITIL� is a Registered Trade Marx of AXELOS Limited

PRINCE2� is a Registered Trade Marx of AXELOS Limited

About the Author

Calvin Harper is a former associate editor of Certification Magazine and a veteran of the publishing industry.

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