Understanding the value of certifications
Understanding the value of certifications before you make a selection is vital.
According to our IT Skills and Salary Report, 9 out of 10 professionals possess at least one certification. That’s a ton of competition in the industry. And the general consensus is the more certifications, the better.
So why are so many IT pros and decision-makers putting such an emphasis on certifications? Why is so much investment devoted to training?
Well, it’s simple—the added value is substantial.
The merits of certification can be separated into two categories: value to individuals and value to organizations.
Value to individuals:
- Professional credibility—it tells co-workers and supervisors that you possess the skills needed to succeed, and you were willing to put in the time and effort to get certified.
- Personal satisfaction—have you ever felt like an expert in something? You’ll have the knowledge to enter your workplace with confidence and assert yourself as a subject matter expert.
- Salary—according to our IT Skills and Salary Report, the wage difference between certified IT professionals and non-certified is $15,913, or 22%.
- Job search—certifications give you an advantage during the hiring process and help you stand out in a competitive market. Some employers won’t even consider candidates unless they possess a certain level of certification.
- Professional growth—career advancement often requires you to learn new technologies or enhance the skills you currently possess.
Value to organizations:
- Job essentials—with technology constantly evolving, there’s a need for all organizations to have subject matter experts on new and updated topics.
- Filling skills gaps—IT decision-makers say that skills gaps can put a strain on many departments and the best way to fill those gaps is with training. Certified employees can lead to greater productivity and increased workforce morale, as well as knowledge share across the department.
- Employee retention—job satisfaction results in greater staff retention. Employees who are fulfilled are less likely to pursue other employment.
- Partner relationships—certain vendors incentivize their partners to maintain competencies on their products. For instance, IBM benchmarks these competencies using certification and badging programs.
Remember, certifications show your value to co-workers, managers and future employers. Beyond the skills you’ll gain, seasoned IT professionals respect certifications because they understand the time and effort needed to acquire one. It’s a great way to differentiate yourself from peers.