AXELOS, the organization behind many of the world’s most renowned corporate certifications, has finally announced dates for the discontinuation of ITIL v3. Students and ITIL v3 experts will have until July 2022 to transfer over to the ITIL 4 certification path.
For those working in the digital and IT sectors, it’s the end of an era. ITIL v3 has long set the standard for IT service management (ITSM). It offers a diverse and comprehensive approach to IT training, and the ITIL v3 Expert and Master qualifications can help candidates unlock some of the highest-paying IT roles across any industry.
Indeed, the release of ITIL 4 Foundation in February 2019 didn’t warrant an immediate end. AXELOS left plenty of time for students to complete their training or cross over to ITIL 4.
That being said, the new framework came with a variety of updates to bring ITIL’s tools and best practices in line with contemporary ITSM. While v3 practitioners did not need to start from scratch, they certainly felt the danger of being left behind.
With the final module of ITIL 4 now on the market, AXELOS has finally announced time limits for those still waiting to take the exams for ITIL v3 and the ITIL 4 Managing Professional (MP) Transition module. So, how long do they have left, and what do they need to know about updating their qualifications?
When will ITIL v3 be discontinued?
According to AXELOS, the exact dates are:
- ITIL v3 Foundation (English) – 01/07/2021
- ITIL v3 Intermediate examinations (English) – 01/01/2022
- ITIL 4 Managing Professional Transition module examination (English) – 01/07/2022
As for all translated exams, the discontinuation dates are set to be announced on a case by case basis.
Is ITIL v3 still valid?
The release of ITIL 4 does not mean that ITIL v3 has suddenly become irrelevant, nor does it mean practitioners will have to worry about ITIL v3 certification expiration dates. The old framework still covers highly valuable tools, processes, and best practices for managing IT.
That being said, IT has definitely moved on since the framework was first released. While ITIL 4 maintains a focus on elements such as continuous improvement, it also addresses several flaws present in v3. These include its lack of compatibility with other methodologies such as DevOps and Lean. Aspects such as the Service Value System (SVS) and the 34 ITIL 4 Practices will also become more prominent in ITSM going forward.
It is also worth pointing out that, unlike v3, ITIL 4 is also set to be updated on a regular basis. ITIL practitioners played a large part in developing the new framework and will continue to provide AXELOS with ideas and feedback as ITSM continues to evolve. With the rate of evolution seen in digital and IT management over the last decade or so, this is an advantage that neither companies nor career-minded IT managers can afford to ignore.
In short, while ITIL v3 is still valid, the distance between it and ITIL 4 will continue to widen going forwards.
Can I qualify for the ITIL MPT exam before the deadline?
Whether you can qualify depends on your current certification level. Good e-Learning’s ITIL v3 courses and suites come with six to 12 months of access and up to 200 hours’ worth of training content (though the average for intermediate modules is around 25 hours).
In other words, you’ll need to ask yourself: is it worth taking all the required courses and exams when I could start from scratch instead?
Qualifying for ITIL 4 MPT requires either:
- The rank of ‘ITIL Expert’ in ITIL V3 (having completed the Managing Across the Lifecycle (MALC) exam
- A minimum of 17 credits
Can I keep studying ITIL v3?
If you are studying ITIL v3, you will need to take note of the approaching deadlines. Those who can qualify for the ITIL Managing Professional Transition exam before the cutoff point are advised to do so.
However, for students who are just starting out or have only accumulated a small number of ITIL credits, deciding on the best course of action may be more complicated. Keeping in mind the cost of ITIL certifications and the remaining time before the intermediate exams are discontinued, it may well make more sense to start studying ITIL 4 rather than pushing ahead with the old certification scheme.