Article

5 Certification Tracks for IT Managers to Broaden Their Tech Knowledge & Improve Cross-functional Collaboration

May 16, 2024

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Emily May

Some professionals believe that they can rely solely on their existing knowledge once they reach a management position. However, in reality, continuous learning is a key aspect of holding a leadership role, and this rings especially true for IT managers. 

Technology continues to change rapidly as virtual reality, automation, and artificial intelligence are making a mark on society. Because of this, IT departments are cross-collaborating more than ever with other teams, and IT managers must continuously build upon their knowledge to keep up. Learning while juggling a full-time career can be a hassle, but ICAgile students enjoy our certification courses as an option that is both flexible and reputable. 

We combed through our course offerings and hand-picked five learning tracks across various technology specialties–from product management to development operations–that will enhance your knowledge of the tech industry and build a shared understanding that enhances cross-collaboration. 

This article explores the ICAgile courses most relevant to IT managers on their agile journeys.

What Is an IT Manager?

An information technology manager, or IT manager, leads the technology infrastructure within an organization to ensure seamless operational capabilities for stakeholders. In alignment with overarching objectives, IT managers plan, build, and implement technology programs that enhance and maintain productivity and functionality. 

An IT service manager's day-to-day responsibilities vary depending on factors like organization size and industry. However, typical responsibilities include strategic planning, infrastructure management, leading the internal IT team, project management, budgeting, and ensuring security and compliance.

Further, IT managers and their teams often collaborate cross-functionally with other departments, especially software development, to build and improve products.

Why Should IT Managers Learn About a Variety of Tech Functions?

An IT manager’s duties are expansive, requiring a rich knowledge of technologies, tools, and strategies to optimize operations. Learning about specialized tech functions, such as project management or delivery management, improves one's skill set, allowing for career advancement, creative problem-solving, effective leadership, and adaptability. 

Secondly, because IT managers often liaise with engineers, product managers, and other tech-related professionals, learning more about these functions helps to develop shared knowledge and understanding, which improves collaboration and communication. 

The Benefits of IT Management Certifications

At ICAgile, we believe learning is a lifelong journey, and a career in IT management isn’t so far from this concept. With technology constantly changing, IT managers must continue to learn to stay ahead of the curve. Seizing educational opportunities empowers industry leaders to hone their skills, expand their knowledge, apply learnings within their teams, and seek career advancement. 

The major benefits of taking a certification course as an IT manager include: 

  • New & cutting-edge learning
  • Broadening knowledge & skill set
  • Learning real-world applications
  • Improved cross-collaboration
  • Improved marketability to employers
  • Increased adaptability & agility
  • Courses are less expensive and time-intensive than going back to school

5 Certification Tracks for Agile IT Managers

IT managers need to know a little about a lot of tech functions. That’s why we recommend five different certification tracks across various specializations.

When navigating to the landing page for each learning track, you’ll notice that each learning journey begins with an agile fundamentals course. This course covers the principles for adopting an agile mindset and serves as foundational knowledge to fall back on throughout your agile career.

In the Agile Fundamentals (ICP) course, you’ll learn: 

  • Origins of agile
  • Establishing the agile mindset
  • Incremental development
  • Product adaptation


You don’t have to take every course in a track or take them in order, but the function categories make it easier to find what you need and explore potential learning opportunities to help fill knowledge gaps. 

Product Management Track

This track provides tools and methodologies to maximize value delivery and practice customer-centricity at every organizational level. With an emphasis on product-related learning materials, you’ll gain a deep understanding of how to identify and build value, engage with customers, and manage product challenges. 

Classes to explore in this track: 

Agile Product Ownership (ICP-APO)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Skills and behaviors for agile product ownership
  • Working with customers and stakeholders
  • Product planning and development
  • Assessing value delivered


Product Management (ICP-PDM)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • The product lifecycle
  • Metrics that matter for products
  • Designing hypothesis tests and experiments
  • Working with teams across the product lifecycle

Delivery Management Track

This track teaches participants how to switch from plan-driven delivery to value-driven delivery. With learning materials grounded in agile management principles, you’ll walk away with agile approaches to apply within your team and greater organization for effective IT project management. 

Classes to explore in this track: 

Agile Project and Delivery Management (ICP-APM)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Delivery agility
  • Manage the system, empower the Team
  • Deliver value continuously
  • Planning and monitoring


Delivery at Scale (ICP-DAS)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Optimize the system
  • Empower the organization to deliver
  • Align value delivery at scale

Agile Engineering Track

This track provides developers with the latest tools and techniques for testing and designing crisp software solutions. With adaptation at the root of the learning materials, you’ll master the art of test-driven development and simple design. 

Classes to explore in this track: 

Agile Programming (ICP-PRG)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Refactoring and legacy code management
  • Acceptance testing and automated tests
  • Collaborative and test-driven development
  • Version control and continuous integration


Agile Software Design (ICP-ASD)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Effective software design
  • Sequencing work throughout the agile lifecycle
  • Technical leadership skills
  • Applying continuous delivery

Development Operations Track

This track provides proven techniques for incorporating agile principles into development operations in today’s rapidly changing technical environments. From cutting-edge methods for continuous integration to continuous delivery, virtualization, and cloud computing management, these certifications provide the knowledge to collaborate and lead development initiatives with ease.

Classes to explore in this track: 

Foundations of DevOps (ICP-FDO)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • The case for development operations
  • Configuration management
  • Continuous integration
  • Continuous delivery


Implementing DevOps (ICP-IDO)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Planning the pipeline
  • Building the pipeline
  • Monitoring the pipeline
  • Maturing the pipeline

Agile Testing Track

This track covers the intertwined relationship between agile testing and development and the importance of collaboration between developers, testers, and other business functions to deliver high-quality software. 

Classes to explore in this track: 

Agile Testing (ICP-TST)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Agile testing mindset
  • Testing techniques
  • Agile testing process


Agile Test Automation (ICP-ATA)

Featured learning outcomes:

  • Test automation strategy
  • Continuous integration
  • Automated story and feature testing
  • Automation support for integration and system testing

How to Decide on a Certification Course

To choose the right course for your needs, navigate to each ICAgile course page and download the full PDF of learning outcomes. 

As you view the learning outcomes, we recommend considering the specialized teams you collaborate with most and existing knowledge gaps. 

If you have any further questions, get in touch with the ICAgile team, and we will do our best to support you on your agile journey. 

Conclusion

We hope you consider our certification courses as an option to progress your IT management career, lead more effective cross-functional collaboration efforts, and increase positive outcomes.

Did you take one of these classes, or are you planning to register for one soon? Tag us on LinkedIn, and let us celebrate your journey with you! 

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TAGGED AS:
Value Delivery, Agile Project and Delivery Management, Delivery at Scale, Agile Product Ownership, Agile Testing, Agile Test Automation, Foundations of DevOps, Implementing DevOps, Agile Programming, Agile Software Design

About the author

Emily May | ICAgile, Marketing Specialist
Emily May is a Marketing Specialist at ICAgile, where she helps educate learners on their agile journey through content. With an eclectic background in communications supporting small business marketing efforts, she hopes to inspire readers to initiate more empathy, productivity, and creativity in the workplace for improved internal and external outcomes.