ITIL® 4 Strategist: Direct Plan and Improve (DPI) Certification Program – English

All courses listed are available in a Self-Paced Study Format. Courses are also available On Demand, meaning the course can be scheduled and delivered as a dedicated corporate group session, based on a minimum number of students per session. For On Demand courses, please contact us for more information.

Course Overview

The ITIL® best practice provides proven guidance to support organizations on their digital transformation journey. ITIL® 4 is the next iteration that incorporates all the best from previous versions and expands on this body of knowledge, by providing a practical and flexible approach to support organizations with a focus on delivering customer outcomes and value through IT-enabled services.

ITIL® 4 provides an end-to-end operating model for the delivery and operation of tech-enabled products and services. It enables IT teams to continue to play a crucial role in wider business strategy and also integrates concepts from other industry best practices such as Lean, Agile and DevOps.

The advanced-level ITIL® 4 Managing Professional courses been developed for IT practitioners working within technology and digital teams across organizations. To obtain the ITIL® 4 Managing Professional designation, the candidate needs to complete all courses in the ITIL® 4 Managing Professional stream:

  • ITIL® 4 Specialist: Create, Deliver and Support
  • ITIL® 4 Specialist: Drive Stakeholder Value
  • ITIL® 4 Specialist: High Velocity IT
  • ITIL® 4 Strategist: Direct Plan and Improve

The ITIL® 4 Strategist: Direct Plan and Improve (DPI) course provides an understanding on:

  • The practical skills necessary to create a ‘learning and improving’ IT organization, with a strong and effective strategic direction
  • The scope and activities relevant to Direct and Plan
  • The role of governance, risk and compliance and how to integrate the principles and methods into the service value system
  • Using the key principles and methods of Organizational Change Management to direct, plan and improve

This course has a focus on the following aspects of the ITIL® 4 Service Value Chain:

  • Plan
  • Improve
  • Governance elements (Direct) from the Service Value System (SVS)

This is a full training package that includes the knowledge transfer as well as the associated certification exam.

Prerequisites and Certification Exam

  • To qualify for this advanced training module, the candidates MUST hold their ITIL® 4 Foundation certification
  • Attendance in an accredited training course for this module and successful completion of the certificate exam
  • Exam details:
  • Exam voucher issued to be scheduled via remote proctor by the student at a date/time/location that is convenient to the student (web-cam and internet access required)
  • 90 minutes
  • Candidates taking the exam in a language that is not their native or working language may be awarded 25% extra time, i.e. 113 minutes in total.
  • ‘Closed book’ examination, 40 multiple choice questions, 70% or higher pass mark (28 or above correct out of 40)


This is a 3 day course when run as an instructor-led course, with an exam voucher issued for students to schedule their exams at a date/time/location that is convenient for them once the course has completed.


This course is intended as advanced specialized training for existing ITIL® 4 Foundation certified candidates and the following audience:

  • Managers of all levels involved in shaping direction and strategy or developing a continually improving team
  • Individuals continuing their journey in service management
  • ITSM managers, directors and process owners/managers
  • ITSM practitioners managing the operation of IT-enabled & digital products and services
  • Existing ITIL ® qualification holders wishing to develop their knowledge

    Program Objective

    The ITIL® 4 Direct, Plan and Improve (DPI) course learning objectives include:

    • Providing the practical skills necessary to create a ‘learning and improving’ IT organization, with a strong and effective strategic direction
    • Providing a practical and strategic method for planning and delivering continual improvement with the necessary agility

    The content covered in the ITIL® 4 Define Plan and Improve (DPI) course includes:

    • Understand the key concepts of Direct, Plan & Improve and their relationship to directing, planning & improving, including:
      • Direction, planning and improvement
      • Operating model
      • Risks
      • Scope of control
      • Value
      • Outcomes
      • Costs and risks and their relationships to direction, planning & improvement
      • Differences between:
        • Vision and mission
        • Strategy, tactics and operations
        • Governance, compliance and management
        • Policies, controls and guidelines
    • Understand how to set the scope of what is to be directed and/or planned, and know how to use key principles and methods of direction and planning, including how to:
    • Cascade goals and requirements
    • Define effective policies, controls and guidelines
    • Place decision-making authority at the correct level
    • Understand the role of GRC and know how to integrate the principles and methods into the service value system, including:
      • The role of risk and risk management in DPI
      • How governance impacts DPI
      • How to ensure that controls are sufficient and not overly excessive
    • Understand how to use the key principles and methods of continual improvement for all improvement initiatives, including how to:
      • Use the ITIL® continual improvement model to improve the service value system
      • Identify assessment objectives, outputs, requirements and criteria
      • Select the best assessment method for a particular situation
      • Define and prioritize desired outcomes of an improvement
      • Build, justify and advocate for a business case
      • Conduct improvement reviews and analyze lessons learned
      • Embed continual improvement at all levels of the service value system
    • Understand / know how to use the key principles and methods of communication and organizational change management to direction, planning and improvement
    • Understand / know how to use the key principles and methods of measurement and reporting in direction, planning and improvement, by knowing how define indicators and metrics to support objectives
    • Understand / know how to direct, plan and improve value streams and practices by:
      • Understanding the differences between value streams and practices and how those differences impact direction, planning and improvement
      • Knowing how to select and use the appropriate methods and techniques to direct, plan and improve value streams and practices

    Program Material

    • Online access to the course content for a 12 month period
    • 3 hours of coaching time with an accredited trainer, to be arranged between the student and the accredited trainer/coach
    • Sample exam
    • Certification exam voucher


    • The ITIL® 4 Strategist: Direct, Plan and Improve publication, (though not mandatory), is highly recommended reading in support of this advanced training
    • ISBN: 9780113316458