The IT profession has received a boost following the news that an IT manager has been awarded the prestigious Chartered Manager status for the first time.
The award went to the man responsible for delivering the Home Office's IT service.
Jeph Hamilton, Fujitsu's service director for the 10-year PFI contract to deliver IT services to 14,000 Home Office staff, had to undergo rigorous appraisal to qualify.
This included submitting work for online assessment, being evaluated by colleagues and customers, and facing a panel of assessors from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) which oversees the accreditation.
The scheme was introduced in September 2003 after government research found that more than a third of UK organisations indicated that their managers are not proficient.
CMI spokesman Mike Petrook said: "There are four stages to go through. You must have a degree or equivalent level qualification in management, plus at least three years' management experience.
"Then you must demonstrate online that you have made a difference in six key areas of management: leading people, managing change, meeting customers' needs, managing activities or resources, managing yourself and managing information and knowledge."
The third stage is a peer-group assessment where six nominated colleagues, including at least one senior line manager and one customer, answer a series of questions about the applicant.
"If you get through all of that, you face a panel interview which delves into the evidence you've given in much more detail," said Petrook.
In addition, all Chartered Managers have to undergo a review every three years. "Evidence submitted has to be related to practical work carried out in the past 12 months, because the aim is to demonstrate the currency of your skills," he explained.
The winner said in a statement: "Reassessment makes the designation different from traditional chartered awards. It means I can't rest on my laurels."
So far around 100 managers across all sectors have successfully attained the accolade. Another 100 applications are currently being processed, including from IT managers at user organisations, IT suppliers and value-added resellers.
The total cost of the assessment process is £480 plus VAT. Click here for more information on becoming a Chartered Manager.
Ceres, located in the asteroid belt, has a carbonaceous-rich upper crust, SwRI study claims
The spacecraft found traces of hydrogen and oxygen molecules, known as hydroxyls, embedded in the rocky surface of the asteroid
The skeleton was unearthed more than 20 years ago in South Africa
Moon's dark side is mountainous, rugged and never visible from the Earth