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A quick guide to COBIT®5: certification levels

COBIT 5 Logo
COBIT 5
is an IT professional certification offered by select APMG accredited training organizations (ATOs). For those of you who may be deprived of time, this post serves as a quick, concise run-through of the certification – what it is, how it could benefit you and what level of qualification would suit you best.

What is COBIT 5?

COBIT 5 (Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology) is a framework owned and supported by ISACA. It was created to support the governance and management of enterprise IT. By undertaking the COBIT 5 certification you will gain invaluable insight into extracting more value from your organization’s information and technology and understand how to tie business goals to IT objectives.

COBIT 5 also provides the metrics and maturity models needed to measure whether or not IT has achieved its objectives. Furthermore, COBIT identifies the associated responsibilities of the business process owners as well as those of the IT process owners.

COBIT 5 achieves complete coverage of the organization’s IT management lifecycle by providing an ‘umbrella’ framework which is mapped to other frameworks and standards. This enables COBIT 5 to be applicable to organizations utilizing multiple IT-related frameworks and standards.


What principles is the COBIT 5 framework based on?

COBIT 5 is based on five principles:

  1. Meeting stakeholder needs
  2. Covering the enterprise end-to-end
  3. Applying a single integrated framework
  4. Enabling a holistic approach
  5. Separating governance from management

Who is COBIT 5 aimed at and what are the benefits of getting certified?

COBIT 5 was designed for professionals working in the field of assurance, security, risk, privacy and compliance. It’s also an ideal option for business leaders and stakeholders involved in governing and managing information and information systems.

There are five separate COBIT 5 qualifications available – Foundation, Implementation, Assessment, NIST Standards using COBIT 5 (INCS) and COBIT Assessor for Security (AS). Here is a break-down of each qualification and the benefits each one provides:

  • Foundation Level:

Achieving COBIT 5 Foundation enables you to demonstrate that you have the requisite knowledge and understanding of the COBIT 5 guidance to be able to:

  1. Understand the governance and management of enterprise IT
  2. Assess the condition of your organization’s enterprise IT
  3. Determine which elements of COBIT 5 would be suitable to implement
  • Implementation Level:

Successfully undertaking the COBIT 5 Implementation certification will enable you to effectively apply COBIT 5 to address specific business problems, pain points, risk scenarios and trigger events within your organization. You will learn how to be versatile in applying and implementing COBIT 5 as necessitated by a variety of organizational or client scenarios.

By achieving Implementation level certification you will understand:

  1. Implementation challenges and potential implantation pitfalls
  2. How to determine and assess current process capability
  3. How to analyse enterprise drivers and latest best practices
  • Assessor Level:

The COBIT 5 Assessor certification provides you with the best practice methods needed to guide implementation activities – supporting case studies are used throughout the course. You will learn how to effectively execute a process assessment and how to analyse the results.

You’ll also learn how to utilize these results to achieve a variety of value adding benefits – such as improving processes, measuring the success of current or forecasted business goals, benchmarking and compliance.

Having been awarded Assessor level certification you’ll understand:

  1. How to carry out a process capability assessment using the Assessor Guide: Using COBIT 5
  2. How to identify and assess the roles and responsibilities in the process capability assessment process
  3. How to apply the Process Assessment Model (PAM) while performing a process capability assessment.

If you’re looking to enhance your certification even further – possessing the COBIT 5 Assessor certification also makes you eligible to become a COBIT 5 Certified Assessor. Visit the ISACA website for more information.

  • Implementing the NIST Cyber Security Framework:

This COBIT 5 certification specialises in the field of cybersecurity. Responding to the prevalence of attacks upon organizations’ IT structures – U.S. President Obama issued Executive Order 13636 in 2013, ‘Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity.’

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) developed a voluntary risk-based cybersecurity framework to fulfil the requirements of Order 13636 – which called for cybersecurity framework that’s, “prioritized, flexible, repeatable, performance-based and cost-effective.”

Undertaking this certification will inform you on how to implement the NIST Cyber Security Framework using COBIT 5 – contributing to your organization’s resilience against the myriad of cyber based security threats.

For more information on COBIT 5 – please visit our cyber security dedicated website.

Posted in Cyber Security, Qualifications.

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  1. Miroslaw Dabrowski says

    For people interested in COBIT5 overview, take a look on this mind map: https://www.mindmeister.com/405165105/cobit-5-study-guide-mind-map