Become an Apptio Recognized TBMA

Blog Post created by rhonda Employee on May 12, 2017


Recognized TBMA (RTBMA) is the first step toward becoming an Apptio Certified Elite TBMA (ETBMA). 

RTBMAs complete 50 hours of self-study, instructor-led courses, and hands-on practice followed by an online examination to validate they have foundational TBMA knowledge. 


AAEP (All Access Education Pass) holders are invited to pursue the title of Apptio Recognized TBMA



The necessary course of study for an RTBMA is divided into two segments and is always visible from the Apptio University Learning Path.


The first five self-paced courses referred to as the Explorer courses are comprised of self-paced, introductory Apptio and TBM courses. 


After completing these courses, you will automatically earn the Apptio University Explorer badge and gain points to increase your level on Community. This badge will be visible on your TBM Connect profile.



After completing the Explorer courses, you're ready to continue to NavigatorThe Navigator segment includes a blend of best practice and product related study. Some of the content you can consume at your own pace and other courses require that you participate in our virtual classrooms where you’ll have access to outstanding instructors and get hands-on practice using Apptio. When you complete these courses, you’ll earn the Apptio University Navigator badge and gain more Apptio Community points.


After completing Explorer and Navigator, you're eligible to attempt the online examination.


What is the RTBMA exam like?

The Apptio Recognized TBMA examination is a combination of multiple-choice and multiple-response questions designed to validate that you possess knowledge in five foundational areas:


TBM Administrator (R11/R12)

  • Explain at a high level the purpose of the Apptio suite of products and how they support TBM
  • Understand the Apptio licensing structure and how to stay compliant
  • Interact with Apptio support
  • Communicate the ongoing value of TBM and Identify the core principles of TBM
  • Describe key IT Operations terms and concepts
  • Describe key financial statements such as the balance sheet, income statement
  • Collaborate with IT and Finance execs by Identifying the relationship between financial processes, IT processes, and TBM
  • Manage Apptio users

TBM (R11/R12)

  • Explain at a high level the TBM Hallmarks of Success
  • Identify the importance and benefits of TBM Governance and the recommended steps for establishing a TBM Office
  • Identify the benefit of and process for creating a TBM Roadmap

ATUM Model (R11/R12)

  • Identify the importance of the ATUM Model Structure
  • Identify the components of the ATUM Model
  • Stay ATUM compliant
  • Configure new components to model

Data Management

  • Troubleshoot a model including finding lost dollars and identifying variances (R11)
  • Configure, manage and promote projects in Dev, Stage, and Prod (R11/R12)
  • Use formulaic logic (R11/R12)
  • Create and/or review/understand allocations (R11/R12)
  • Validate and review data (R11/R12)
  • Load data effectively (R11/R12)
  • Run data quality reports (R11/R12)
  • Understand inference (R11)
  • Map data to data sets and manage data sets (R11/R12)
  • Add/edit custom columns (R11/R12)
  • Understand and create transforms (R11)
  • Create and interpret object identifiers with the right amount of granularity (R11/R12)
  • Define and Gather needed data (R11/R12)
  • Use audit log (R11)
  • DataLink Connector

Reporting (R11/R12)

  • Identify types of OOB reports and how to locate them
  • Understand the performance implications of reports
  • Interpret and analyze a report
  • Create reports / dashboards to meet business user requirements
  • Understand and properly define report settings
  • I can create a report of my over and under-allocated costs


Consistent with industry technical certification practices, every candidate will not receive every question from the examination pool and the examination pool will evolve over time. Most exams will have around 50 questions and can be easily completed by a candidate who is prepared in under 2 hours. Passing scores will vary based on question weighting and ongoing analysis. Candidates should not focus on earning a minimum passing score, but should instead strive to achieve the competencies noted above.


What happens when I pass the exam?

When you successfully complete the examination the Community Points course will unlock.  Once you complete the Community Points course you will be awarded with the title of Apptio Recognized TBMA 20xx where xx = the calendar year in which the title was obtained.


Recognized TBMAs receive:

  • Recognized TBMA badge on TBM Connect
  • An official Apptio Recognized TBMA logo
    • Can be included in email signature files and posted to social media sites such as LinkedIn
  • A downloadable certificate
  • Listing on the TBMA Wall of Fame (if you give us your permission to do so)


What happens if I do not pass the exam?

You will receive your examination score immediately after submitting your exam. After 4 attempts, your exam access will be revoked. To have your access re-initiated email university@apptio.com. If 30 days have passed since your last attempt, the Apptio University help desk will gladly reinstate your access. You may attempt the exam a total of 4 times within a 30 day period.


If I earned the title in a previous year, how do I upgrade to the current year?

See the information here Keeping your RTBMA or ETBMA title current 


Can I attempt the exam or earn the title without an AAEP?

The body of work created to prepare individuals to be successful TBMAs along with the examination that validates knowledge, is made possible by and is a benefit exclusively of the AAEP program.


I have an AAEP but I’m very experienced and don’t think I need to take all of the classes that lead to the exam. Can I skip them?

We highly recommend attending formal education but will consider exceptions on a case by case basis. For consideration, please email university@apptio.com, note the courses you would like to skip and the Apptio sponsor who can vouch for your equivalent experience.


I still have questions, how can I get answers?

Leave questions right here in the comments and we’ll make sure to respond.


I think I might do this. Should I go for it?

Yes! Education Services is here to support your success and recognize you for your achievements. All you have to do to get started, is earn your Explorer badge. When you earn the Navigator badge, you’ll automatically get access to the exam and can take it whenever you like.


Update your TBM Connect status to let us know you’re pursuing the Recognized TBMA title. We want to cheer you on!