Last month Logical Operations joined the IT Certification Council, an organization focused on growing and promoting professional certifications in IT. It establishes industry best practices, markets the value of certification, enhances exam security, and works on other issues connected to certification. At Logical Operations, we believe in professional certifications, and we’re glad to have the chance to work with industry leaders on the issue.
I think the value of certification to an IT professional is obvious. There is no better way to advertise your skills than to get them certified. Certification benefits employers, too. Obviously, certifications help in the hiring process, but I wanted to mention four benefits that don’t often get much play in discussions of certification.
- Certified staff increase customer/client trust. This is most true with IT consulting organizations, when some of your employees will be working to manage or implement customers’ applications or data. The customers want to know the staff handling their data are competent and professional, and they can be reassured by certifications. But in today’s world, even if you’re not doing IT consulting, you are probably handling customer data, and customers are increasingly wary (with good reason) about who they entrust with their data. In fact, if IT certifications aren’t very common in your industry, increasing employee certifications can give you a competitive advantage, even in marketing.
- Certified staff are easier to manage. If you are managing an IT operation, one of your major responsibilities is assigning people to projects and problems. If you’re a good manager, you know your staff’s skills pretty well, but if you are new to the team, staff certifications can help you get a jump on that knowledge. Certified staff are also easier to hire because certifications can reduce or eliminate the need for screening tests among job applicants, and they certainly help in sorting them by skills.
- Certified staff are more effective in their jobs. There is a reason that certified staff earn, on average, about five percent more than their non-certified counterparts. A recent survey on certification found that 70% of people who took certification training reported gains in their on-the-job effectiveness.
- Certified staff are more satisfied in their jobs. This is probably the most interesting and powerful benefit of certification. The same survey mentioned above found that 86% of certified staff were satisfied in their jobs. Note that the Conference Board’s annual job satisfaction report for 2016 found job satisfaction among US workers is at 49.6%. That means more than half of US workers are dissatisfied with their jobs. This is a perilous situation in an era of insider threats. Encouraging certification training among IT staff may be one of the best steps you can take for cyber security.
If you read this blog regularly, then you know about some of the certifications Logical Operations offers, as I have often written about CyberSAFE, Cybersec First Responder, CloudMASTER®, and others. We use a rigorous process to create vendor-agnostic certifications that are in line with industry standards, including compliance with ISO 17024 and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for select exams. This page has information on some of our most sought-after certifications. If you’re an employer, don’t deny yourself the benefits of employee certification. Encourage your people to aim for certification and give them the time and space to do so.