Never heard of IT Certifications and their benefits before? You are not alone!
You are possibly a fresh grad or undergrad who is still planning their career path ahead. Or maybe you are someone who has just started working in the IT realm and are still coming to terms with it and the scope for growth ahead.
Either way – I get it. You are not at fault.
Maybe you never developed the greatest affinity for IT and related subjects, atleast given the way they are being taught in high school and colleges worldwide.
As it is, there is a deep and practical disconnect between what is being delivered as Curriculum in Information Technology (IT) related disciplines and what the industry expects from young and capable manpower.
Enter IT Certifications Super Power!
IT Certifications bridge the gap between capability (delivered through academic rigour) and employability (this is the only reason an employer will pay you a salary)!
Benefits of IT Certification are often vastly under rated.
It has become imperative for businesses in India and worldwide to embrace technology and digitization in each and every aspect of their existence including crucial business assets and processes. However, to manage these high-value investments, these millions of businesses and enterprises are looking for extremely skilled candidates.
All in all Professional IT Certifications are all that an HR team really looks for when looking to hire high calibre IT talent.
Why get IT Certifications in the first place? Is my knowledge and experience not enough?
I agree, do not get me wrong, real-world skills matter the most. Nothing can triumph experience, sheer talent and expertise and it definitely is no mean task to replace a man who’s been there, done that.
Take a look at the other side.
No one can deny that both hiring and getting hired have become a lot competitive. To the point where your chances of landing a jackpot in Vegas this year look substantially higher than you landing the IT job of your dreams!
When applying for that prized IT vacancy someplace, unknown to you thousands if not tens of thousands of people are applying for the same post – having equal if not higher ambition and levels of hope.
On the other hand, businesses are saturated with great looking resumes selling themselves – they are under immense internal pressure to make the right decisions within exacting deadlines.
Hiring the wrong skillset, worse still the wrong person, can have potentially disastrous consequences for a corporate.
Think of the resume as your tinder profile – highlighting your best, thereby giving you the best chances of being swiped right.
Now again, do you really think the Human resource teams are going through your best achievements in college or how well you think you did in extracurriculars in high school?
The HR team is simply looking to filter the wheat from the chaff. As fast as possible. Read the last 2 sentences again. Let that sink in.
The HR’s IT Hiring Conundrum
A scary statistic now.
In its 2018 Eye-Tracking Study, Ladders Inc. revealed that the time recruiters spend on the initial screen of a resume is up from an average of only six seconds in 2012, but only by about a second. Today’s recruiters skim resumes for an average of 7.4 seconds.https://www.hrdive.com/news/eye-tracking-study-shows-recruiters-look-at-resumes-for-7-seconds/541582/
A resume that took you 50+ hours to make – gets read in under 3 blinks of your eyelid.
Lot said, suffice to say the having the right certifications on your resume will ensure you go to the right HR desk – giving you the best chance to showcase your best side in an interview.
Top IT Certifications for Graduates and Undergraduates
Some of the more common IT certifications that make sense for undergraduates and graduates seeking employment are as under:
- Microsoft MCSA (Microsoft Certified Systems Associate)
- Cisco CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate)
- VMWare Suite of Virtualization Certifications
- Amazon AWS
- Google Cloud Certifications
- CompTIA Network+
- CompTIA Security+
NOTE: Above is not an exhaustive list. I shall be putting up a separate post detailing the same later.
Most of these certifications are owned by companies that have been around for decades and as a result, are held in very high regard by companies and industries across the globe.
Why should aspiring IT Professionals get Certified? What are the benefits of Certification?
I have zeroed down on some natural reasons you would want to certify at the earliest:
Gain an Ultra Competitive Edge
Standing out from the rest of the crowd could not be easier. Help your prospective employer find you!
Increased Efficiency at Workplace
Latest IT training increase your professional expertise thereby helping you become a more productive contributor at work!
Increased Effectiveness through expanded Skillsets
With the right knowledge, you can simply do things right, the first time. Create a powerful impression on your reporting supervisors and bosses.
Leverage Professional Networking Opportunities
When you embark to acquire a world-class certification, you will get in touch with professionals worldwide. Leverage this social network to make sense of career opportunities worldwide.
Enhance Your Earning Potential
Get certified, look better than the rest. Guess who is getting the next raise?
Improve your Promotion and Growth Quotient
IT Certifications showcase your talent and potential in a nutshell. Help your manager and management teams recognize your latent capabilities easily.
Become Highly Visible to External Job Opportunities
Companies are forever looking to hire the best talent. An average-looking resume with the right keywords and IT Certifications can get you shortlisted for an interview.
Build Professional Credibility & Pedigree
Think of yourself and your work as your own brand. It is important to ensure everyone sees your professional work in the best light.
Survive the Worst from Professional Life
You love your job and your employer loves what you do for them. Great, but make it extremely difficult for your employer to fire you in the worst of times. You owe it to yourself.
Stay Abreast with the Latest & Best in Technology
Staying current is a must. Lead your company to places they never thought they’d go, guide them with your knowledge and skills towards newer frontiers.
Become a Sought after Specialist
It is all about specialists and niche-masters in 2020. If you can do one small thing very well, chances are employers will queue up to hire you. Focus on becoming very good at specific skill sets, to begin with, and then expand your learning horizons as you go along.
To get ahead, you simply would have to …..
Industry Study by Premier Certification Body – Pearson Vue
Pearson Vue is the World’s Premier Certification Testing Center with over 20,000+ Centers. They conduct certification exams at their prestigious test centres for more than 450+ clients including Microsoft, Cisco, HP, Oracle, Palo Alto, Amazon and more.
Millions of students certify using their test center network every year worldwide.
Pearson VUE conducted the 2018 Value of IT Certification survey that covered 10,000+ candidates (respondents) across 32 IT Certification programs from IBM, Oracle, Palo Alto, Microsoft, etc.
Candidates were interviewed from a wide variety of industries as illustrated below:
|► IT-related Services|
|► IT Consulting|
|► Government, Military etc.|
|► Banking & Financial|
|► IT Communications & Manufacturing|
|► Education Services|
|► Real Estate & Construction|
Pictures always speak a thousand words! The above report strongly underlines the importance of certification in information technology.
Goes without saying that IT spans virtually each and every industry worldwide – converting retail to e-commerce and all other services offline to online.
Which IT Certification should I get?
According to the latest ‘Value of IT Certification Survey’ by computer-based testing company Pearson VUE, security comes out on top when it comes to the specialty area being covered most by certification exams (21.4 percent), followed by networking and wireless (18.7 percent) and cloud (18.1 percent).Pearson Vue 2019 – Value of IT Certification Survey
You can access the latest version of Pearson Vue 2019 findings here.
The earlier 2018 report is a nice PDF that tells you the same story with nice looking infographics and data story telling.
Upskilling is the mantra of 2020 – especially if you are from any of the Engineering, Computer Application or Computer Science disciplines. IT Certifications are here to stay so the sooner you decide on your IT Certification roadmap leading to career success, the better.
In simple words, get certified, get ahead in your IT success journey!