How ITIL and PRINCE2 relate to each other.

What is The Relation Between ITIL and PRINCE2?

The project failure rate for organisations that don't integrate project management into their business strategies increases by more than 66%. Effective project management is critical across your organisation.

It's especially important for IT projects. The right framework can help you better manage projects in IT and other departments.

ITIL and PRINCE2 are two systems that can improve how you deliver IT services and manage projects. Learn more about how ITIL and PRINCE2 relate to each other. You'll find out how certification can benefit you and your organisation.

What Is ITIL?

The IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is a framework of best practices for delivering IT services. IT services continue to grow in importance. Worldwide IT spending will likely reach $4.5 trillion in 2022.

The goals of ITIL are to improve efficiency and provide consistent service delivery. ITIL helps businesses in many ways such as:

  • Managing risk
  • Strengthening customer relations
  • Establishing cost-effective processes
  • Building a stable IT environment

Following the ITIL framework helps an organisation establish IT services that can grow, scale, and change. It helps align the IT department with the needs of the organisation.

ITIL has gone through several versions since its first release in 1989. ITIL 4 is the latest version. It was released in 2019.

What Is PRINCE2?

PRojects IN Controlled Environments (PRINCE) is a process-based method for more effective project management. It helps project managers deliver projects on time, in scope, and within budget. PRINCE2 provides a linear framework with step-by-step guidance on managing:

  • Cost
  • Time
  • Quality
  • Scope
  • Benefits
  • Risk

The PRINCE2 framework divides projects into manageable stages. It focuses on delivering quality products instead of following a standardised list of activities.

The first version of PRINCE focused on managing IT projects. The usefulness of the framework isn't limited to IT, though. PRINCE2 revised the system to remove specific mentions of IT and make the framework apply to project management more generally.

The 6th edition of PRINCE2 was released in 2017.


ITIL and PRINCE2 may seem similar. They have several key differences, though. Understanding these similarities and differences can help you decide which certification to pursue.

Focus of the Framework

The first key difference is the focus of each framework. ITIL focuses specifically on IT. It's a service management framework.

PRINCE2 is a project management framework. It can apply across an organisation in any industry.

Components of the Framework

ITIL and PRINCE2 use different structures to achieve their goals. However, both systems intend to let users create a solution that fits the specific needs of their organisation.

Structure of ITIL

The main components of ITIL are the service value system and the four dimensions model. The four dimensions of service management are:

  • Organisations and people
  • Value streams and processes
  • Information and technology
  • Partners and supplies

These map onto the service value system and chain.

The service value system describes the inputs and outputs of the system. Inputs are the parts of an organisation that contribute directly to value creation. Outputs are business objectives.

The service value chain includes six activities. These activities combine to create value for end-users by delivering a product or service. Value chain activities include:

  • Plan
  • Improve
  • Engage
  • Design and transition
  • Obtain and build
  • Deliver and support

ITIL 4 also includes general management, service management, and technical management practices. These practices are the resources and activities necessary to accomplish business objectives.

Structure of PRINCE2

PRINCE2 has 7 basic principles, 7 themes, and 7 processes. Following the principles, themes, and processes provides a system of controls for a project.

The basic principles provide the foundation of the project. They should be followed in order. The principles are:

  • Continued business justification
  • Learning from experience
  • Defined roles and responsibilities
  • Overseeing management stages
  • Management by exception
  • Focus on products
  • Adjusting to the project situation

Themes help to develop the project. They're the areas of knowledge that are necessary throughout the project lifecycle. The themes are:

  • Business case
  • Organisation
  • Quality
  • Plans
  • Risks
  • Changes
  • Progress

Processes direct production and structure the project's objectives. They help you achieve your goals more effectively. The processes are:

  • Preparing a project
  • Directing a project
  • Initiating a project
  • Controlling a stage
  • Managing a product delivery
  • Managing stage boundaries
  • Closing a project

A project stage can include several processes. The PRINCE2 project management framework results in a well-structured project that can deliver a higher ROI.

Using ITIL and PRINCE2 Together

Axelos is the organisation that manages and updates ITIL and PRINCE2. Given that ITIL and PRINCE2 both fall under the mission of Axelos, the fact that they interrelate isn't a surprise. The UK government formed Axelos in 2013.

Axelos's mission is to make individuals and organisations more effective. Its programs intend to provide practical guidance and content developed from practical experience.

PRINCE2 can be the project management framework that helps you implement ITIL.

PRINCE2 focuses on the project. Once you complete the objective, the project is finished. ITIL service operation takes over from there.

Each system has principles that benefit the other. For example, the principle of business justification in PRINCE2 keeps projects focused on the goal. This can help prevent function creep in ITIL.

ITIL and PRINCE2 Certification

ITIL and PRINCE2 certification can benefit your career. Both certifications are well-known and highly respected.

ITIL Certification

ITIL 4 certification has two paths. You can move from the Foundation level to become a Managing Professional or Strategic Leader. If you complete both paths, you can become an ITIL Master.

PRINCE2 Certification

PRINCE2 certification has two levels. You can move from the Foundation level to become a Practitioner.

PRINCE2 Agile certification combines Agile methodology with PRINCE2. It's a good choice if you work in an agile environment.

ITIL and PRINCE2 Training

Accredited ITIL training and PRINCE2 training will help you prepare for the certification exams. Online training courses let you learn and prepare in a way that fits your schedule.

Finding the Right ITIL and PRINCE2 Training Courses Online

ITIL and PRINCE2 are systems that can help you be more productive and effective. To get certification, you need the right training courses.

Advised Skills offers accredited training for ITIL and PRINCE2. Our participants have an almost 99% passing rate on the certification exams. We have more than 15,000 graduates in a range of industries.

Explore our courses today and enrol in the one that best fits your goals.

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