Whether you are a student, just starting your career, or looking to make a career change, IT certifications can be the quickest, easiest, and least expensive way to invest in yourself. As we’ll discuss below, certifications can be a much better investment than a full degree. If you are wondering how to make the next step in your career or how to get IT certifications, look no further. We can help you earn the best certifications for IT jobs.
If you are a student, an IT certification can put you ahead of your peers when getting a job and can even earn you college credit.
One career path is to earn an entry-level certification like ITIL or CompTIA A+ to start your IT career. Then go back to school to finish your degree and acquire a few more certifications. Racking up the certs and degrees puts you in the best position possible for work in an intermediate or advanced field like networking or even cybersecurity.
Colleges have even started awarding credit for certifications. The American Council on Education gives ACE CREDIT recommendations by reviewing educational institutions and recommending their courses equivalent to college credit at universities and colleges. Fourteen ACI Learning courses provide ACE CREDIT.
In addition to ACE, there are formal agreements between training providers and certain colleges to offer specific credit in return for classes. This is the case for CSU-Global and ACI Learning, who have formed an agreement where certification classes translate directly into college credit. This means you can work on your career and earn college credits at the same time!
When it comes time to find your next job or that all-important first job, give yourself the extra edge. Recruiters and resume scanning software will look for critical certifications like CompTIA A+, CompTIA Security+, Certified Ethical Hacker, or Certified Network Defender. That means that certifications can determine if you get that call back for an interview. Once you’re in consideration, certifications can help you compete with applicants who have more experience than you.
Traditional degrees can be valuable to your career long-term. However, certifications and industry experience are considered necessary by many employers and can be earned much more quickly. The average tuition for a master’s degree program is $60,000 to $80,000, but other student and living expenses alone can easily cost over $100,000. Certifications are much less expensive, especially if you can find an employer or organization that will cover the cost for you.
Certifications allow you to focus on specific skills you want to build. Unlike a degree, there are no core and elective courses to take. Classes, labs, and simulations are focused on developing the experience that employers are looking for.
From an employer standpoint, every hire is a gamble. It takes time and money to get a new hire registered in the system, trained, and established with a new team. Employers expect that things might not work out for one way or another, but they want to be as confident as possible that you are worth the risk of the hiring process.
That’s where certifications come in. They provide globally recognized 3rd party (CompTIA, EC-Council, PMI, etc.) verification of a specific skill set. Employers and technical professionals alike can easily understand this. Whether you’re validating a skill that you already have or taking on a wholly new one, it shows an employer that you’re ready and able to get to work.
There’s no doubt that certifications will help you make more money, which is valid for many industries. In terms of project management, this study from PMI® showed that certified Project Management Professionals (PMP®) earn an average of 20% more than their uncertified counterparts. Not bad at all!
In terms of IT, Georgetown University’s Center on Education found that men with certificates in computer/information services earned $72,498 per year. More than 72% of men held an associate degree, and more than 54% had a bachelor’s degree.
Certs are some of the best investments you can make for your career.
Employers do well for the company by investing in certifications for their employees. When it comes to an overall company’s well-being, certifications are the gift that keeps on giving. Studies from CompTIA, Microsoft, IDC, and Novell have confirmed wide-ranging benefits for a company on the whole.
Organizations that invest in certifications for their employees are rewarded with happier and more productive workers who want to stay longer. Not only do they bring a brand new skill set to the table, but they’re also grateful, excited, and engaged because their company showed faith in them.
Getting employees certified also boosts confidence and peace of mind. On the one hand, workers feel assured in their knowledge. Meanwhile, customers themselves know that they’re getting more bang for their buck.
Some work is only available if you have the proper certifications. If you’ve spent any time in the Department of Defense (DoD) arena, you’ve probably heard about Directive 8570/8140. It requires that all users of authorized information systems have a certain level of certification. This ensures that people who are working with sensitive information have the knowledge to do so safely.
Whether you’re working for the DoD or a company that regularly contracts with the DoD like Raytheon, Booz Allen Hamilton, Northrop Grumman, etc., you will need these certifications to operate at different levels.
This creates a massive opportunity for those who get certified. Companies that work with the DoD need certified professionals to work on their contracts. ACI Learning can even help you determine which certs can help your career the most.
Lastly, and most importantly, the best part of certifications is the energizing thrill of picking up a new skill. IT is a growing and ever-evolving field, with IT tech firms among the 10 fastest growing industries in the U.S. Meanwhile, talent remains in high demand. This is even more pronounced in the cybersecurity field.
IT skills are desperately needed, necessary, and can positively impact the world around you as you facilitate emerging technology. Taking on these new skills means having an opportunity to enter into a career that will help you develop personally and professionally.
We often feel more fulfilled and at ease when we not only like the work we’re doing, we’re happy with the impact it’s having around us. IT facilitates so many kinds of work that you can find IT jobs in almost any industry that piques your interest. When your work helps people within an organization, you’ll find more profound satisfaction in your efforts.
If you want to start or advance a career that you love, IT is a quickly growing field with several personal and professional benefits. IT certifications can help you land that first job or advance to a higher, better-paying position. That’s why ACI Learning offers some essential IT certifications in the business.
We offer two week-long courses online and on-campus, both day and night, so that you can get trained, certified, and hired in the IT world on the schedule that works with your life. Once you’ve finished classes, you’ll have the opportunity to work with your own personal Employment Development Manager (EDM), who will help revamp your resume, polish your cover letter, and brush up your interview skills.
It’s never too late or too early to start planning your next career move. Contact us today and start a career you’ll love with a salary you’ll appreciate!