Why Certify? The Top 5 Benefits of IT Certifications

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Earning IT certifications takes time and money, so it’s no wonder that people ask what they’ll get in return. But earning a certification has benefits beyond simply carrying a card in your wallet or posting a certificate on your wall. Here are five you can benefit from getting an IT certification.

  1. Prove Your Skills and Knowledge
    Certifications offer a way for you to prove to potential employers, or your current employer, that you have the skills you say you do. They don’t simply test what you know, but also how to perform tasks and how to approach problem solving. For example, CompTIA certifications include performance-based questions that test your hands-on skills by requiring you to perform certain tasks.
  2. Remain Competitive and Employable
    CompTIA’s HR Perceptions of IT Training and Certification study revealed that 91 percent of employers use IT certifications as a reliable indicator of a good candidate in the hiring process. They do so because they know that certifications set a benchmark level for the knowledge, skills and abilities they want their IT staff to have. And if you’re looking for a job with the government or with a government contractor, they often require certain IT certifications to even be considered for the position.
  3. Gain Job Proficiency More Quickly
    Many people apply for jobs that provide opportunity for growth, which means they may not have all the skills required at the time of hire. Preparing for and earning certifications are a great way to ramp up your skills and move up more quickly. Taking classes, reading study guides and completing online training modules can help you gain the skills you need in small chunks. You can immediately take what you learn and implement it on the job, and when you’re ready, you can take the certification exam to validate your newfound knowledge.
  4. Make an Investment in Your Career
    Earning certifications isn’t an easy task. It takes time to prepare, and they aren’t cheap. Whether you or your employer is footing the bill, getting a certification shows that you are interested and invested in professional development.
  5. Keep Your Skills Up to Date
    Accredited certifications, in particular, require continuing education in order to keep your certification active. By attending conferences, participating in webinars, teaching courses and writing for blogs or other publications, you are sharing your knowledge and staying up to date with the latest advances. Not only will this keep your credential current, but it again shows others that you are passionate about what you do and want to continue to learn so you can be the best IT pro you can be.

Whether you’re just getting into IT or have been in the field for years, earning an IT certification can help you prove your knowledge in and passion for the industry and help you move up in your career. Check out the CompTIA Career Roadmap to see which industry certifications – CompTIA and otherwise – apply to which careers.

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These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC's position, strategies, or opinion.

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Debra B. McCraw

Debra B. McCraw

Debra B. McCraw oversees CompTIA’s IT Career News blog, which covers certifications, career advice and IT industry trends. She has been creating web content for enterprises, small businesses and nonprofits since 2008.