How does a certification help my IT career?
A certification is used by employers as a benchmark when reviewing candidates. It is a stepping stone into a dream role or the upskill you need within a career.
With the rapid advancements in technology, it is fast becoming a requirement for candidates to have a certain level of skill for each role in the industry. Certifications are a crucial part of this and in turn, the reasons for getting certified are growing.
Having a certification from a globally respected organisation will instil trust in your capability to do a job role. Based on the role, employers commonly look for specific certifications. For example, someone at the beginning of an IT career would be expected to obtain a CompTIA A+ to prove their IT professional skills. The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) is viewed as the industry standard for networking roles. It indicates to employers you have the knowledge to complete tasks efficiently and in line with trusted methods.
The basis of gaining a certification is to learn a new skill or to validate one you already possess. The methodologies you learn will be tried and tested and in line with industry demands. This will allow you to move forward in your career with confidence, knowing that you have the credentials to back your business decisions. According to research by Microsoft, certified employees are 90% more productive and 60% more efficient than their peers.
Enter a specialism
For many, gaining a certification is a solid route into a particular pathway. If your previous experience is within a different industry, it will teach you the fundamentals needed to change careers. If you’re already an IT professional, you can earn a certification to refine your skills and progress. Become an ethical hacker with EC-Council’s Certified Ethical Hacker or prove your extensive knowledge of business analysis with the Certified Business Analysis Professional.
Keeping skills up to date
In the tech industry, it is so important to ensure your skills are up to date. Certifications are reviewed and updated far more regularly than other sources of education, like university.
The certifications we offer are reviewed by industry experts to ensure they are on track with exactly what the industry needs. This means they are shaped with your employability in mind. Being able to display an understanding of the issues a potential employer may be facing is going to make you stick out for all the right reasons.
Increased chance of promotions
The rewards for getting certified are being increasingly recognised. A report by IDC discovered that CompTIA-certified professionals are promoted almost twice as often as their non-certified colleagues.
It demonstrates to employers that you are committed to your profession and is often rewarded. Microsoft reported that certified technologists earn 15% more than their uncertified peers.
Join a community
You’ll open yourself up to a pool of like-minded professionals when studying for a certification. There are a multitude of forums specifically aimed at IT certification holders and current students.
You can build a solid network of professionals to gain advice and support from that will help you throughout your career. Social networking platform, LinkedIn, is a great place to find other certified professionals that could be valuable in your network.
We spoke to former post woman, Zena, who was looking to break into the tech industry for a fresh start and new challenges.
“Upon completing the Comptia A+ I had a new job within 3 months. I am currently working for Specsavers, as a Service Desk Analyst.”
Learning People student, Azhar, found great success in Cyber Security after completing our Cyber Security Collection. He had previous experience in IT and wanted to further his career in a new direction. Gaining the relevant certifications lead him into a role that is perfect for his career goals.
“One must always be mindful that [the cyber security] industry is changing much faster than others in IT, so it’s important to continue to learn and develop.”
Hear from industry experts
We asked a group of technology experts what they think the value of certifications are.
Chris Hodson, Chief Information Security Officer at Tanium:
“Certifications give an employer a starting position. They give them a level of confidence and assurance that somebody not only knows a technology specifically, but also that they have the dedication and determination – and the patience – to actively apply themselves in an environment.”
James Stanger, Chief Technology Evangelist at CompTIA:
“What a certification does is, it acts as a scalable mentor, instead of going to that one person and ‘can you teach me this?’ I can go to CompTIA, who gives a body of knowledge that says ‘look, here’s what’s important, here’s what’s not’.”
Beverly Bone, Professional Certifications Director at IBM:
“I strongly recommend people drive towards certification. It legitimises your skills, it makes you visible to employers and it lets people know you’re serious.”
Clem Craven, Senior CSIRT Cyber Security Training Lead at BT:
“Certifications give you credibility and they validate what you’ve done… You wouldn’t get in a car with someone who hasn’t passed their driving test and hasn’t got a licence to drive. So, why would I really want to employ someone who’s got no certification or validation on what they’ve done?”
Ready to take the next step and enquire about one of our online courses? Request a consultation now.