The real cost of ITIL V3 Expert certification
We've raised the issue before of whether ITIL certification offers a return on investment, especially if you pay your own way as compared to scamming the boss into paying for it. For those of you who are self-funded, the total cost may be food for thought. I reckon it is up to $60,000 or even more, depending on your hourly rate, not to mention 4 to 6 weeks out of your life.
[Updated: I was asked about online training so I looked at that too. Courses are much cheaper but if you factor cost of your time it is still a hefty commitment.]
I used this spreadsheet. Follow that link to save your own copy and plug your own numbers in (no registration, free). [First time I have publicly shared on Google Docs so let me know if you can't access it]
I used a very humble recession-era hourly consulting rate of $120. I bet some of you are on more.
I averaged the costs of two vendors (Pink and HP) to get a price. You can overtype the column "enter your own costs here" if you have quotes for local courses.
For the online courses I used a good value bundle deal (including the cost of examinations) from ITSM Solutions. I make the assumption that the time commitment is about the same. You get the opportunity to use more "non-billing time" with online training, but I also believe you need more hours for the same result: you are less focused, more easily distracted, less supported, and often more fatigued than in a classroom setting.
Perhaps you don't want to charge all (or any) of the study hours as lost revenue time. Then it will "only" cost you about twenty grand (or five grand for online courses!). Maybe you want to remove the Foundation course because it is pretty much a given you would do that anyway. Or cost it at about $300 if you self-train and don't cost the hours spent. Come up with your own number.
Then answer these questions:
- Maybe your personal networks and reputation deliver you enough work anyway. Do you need this to get hired?
- Is your future in ITIL? Perhaps you could better spend these funds opening up a new area such as audit, security, governance or whatever.
- Can you afford this kind of money in 2009?
- Can you spare 200-350 hours right now?
Personally I answer "no" to all four. I don't see me getting ITIL Expert.
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