The case for ITIL certification in IT service management

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What’s the difference between being certified and not certified in IT service management (ITSM) best practice?

At a base level in ITSM you might be someone providing “boots on the ground”, doing the actual troubleshooting on the service desk and implementing changes. However, as you progress in service management the job isn’t about just opening and closing tickets; you’re looking at things holistically across an organization.

Digital companies are increasingly demanding people with the capability to manage IT as a service and make significant, quantifiable improvements. This is more difficult to do without having a globally-recognized industry best practice such as ITIL®.

Being certified is important: it tests your knowledge, improves your resumé and gives you the stamp of approval. And it builds the foundation for individuals to become an authority when talking about ITSM.

Not having a credential is limiting and practitioners shouldn’t postpone their efforts in learning how they can make a real impact in their organization.

Seeking improvements

Just doing your job well is not enough – most people are doing that. So, show leadership and ambition by going the extra mile and looking for areas of improvement in your organization. That puts you steps ahead of your colleagues who aren’t doing that.

Rather than saying “I can’t do anything until the company invests in me”, take the approach of showing you are someone the company should invest in because you’re willing to make a difference in the company.

Of course, that could mean taking on additional duties that you’re not being paid for, but it’s where an organization starts to see additional value in the work you’re doing. It seems so simple but when you do this you’ll find you can start “writing your own ticket”.

ITIL training and certification

Once you start attracting investment from your employer in ITIL training and certification (or even self-funding if necessary), it’s just the beginning of a learning journey. In my case, I used my newly-acquired ITIL Foundation knowledge to help other colleagues prepare for their ITIL certification. This was in addition to my day job but, consequently, it meant I could ask for further training investment. And getting access to further ITIL certifications means being gainfully employed for a very long time.

In time, this also enables you to obtain other employment if your organization doesn’t remunerate you to the level you want. It’s important to know where you stand and sometimes it’s time to move on. When finding yourself in this position, having ITIL is a differentiator when all other candidates are competing with a Master’s degree and experience.

In ITSM, if you aspire to grow as a person and to advance your career you need to pursue certifications and go the extra mile in your role. Above all, understand what your employer defines as delivering value; because if you don’t, someone else will.

To find an AXELOS ITIL training provider and take your own ITIL certification, use our Trainer search.

Read more AXELOS blog posts from Adam McCullough

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Current rating: 5 (3 ratings)


8 Jan 2019 John Mitropoulos
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Definitely agree that being ITIL certified puts you one step ahead of others.
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