Nearly everyone knows that experts project steady growth for the information technology (IT) career field over the next few years; the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports claim that expected job growth rates within the IT job market will surpass most other industries. While all IT positions have the potential for growth, expertise in specialized technology like virtualization and server administration give qualified IT professionals a decided edge. Here are some of the hottest certifications for competitive IT specialists.
Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert
Although there are different computing platforms available for individuals and businesses to use, Microsoft is the noted leader of the pack for applications, operating systems, and servers. Microsoft’s training and certification programs have become nearly as well-known as the products that they support. There are eight specific certification categories for IT professionals to pursue, and each certification is virtually synonymous with job competence. One of the most popular categories is the Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) for Server Infrastructure. Those holding this credential are presumably proficient with networking and Active Directory services as well as Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012.
VMware Certified Professional
While MCSE Server Infrastructure verifies a person’s knowledge of server virtualization using Hyper-V, VMware is the recognized leader in networks, applications, and storage virtualization solutions. As technology advances, many dynamic applications gain recognition by organizations’ IT departments but implementing them becomes a challenge because of infrastructure constraints. Virtualization allows organizations to run multiple applications and operating systems on one computer using their virtual machines; it also presents a way to consolidate hardware to gain operating efficiencies. Those with the VMware Certified Professional credential are proficient with introducing organizations to the virtual landscape.
Project Management Professional
Many IT professionals are technically savvy, but they either do not have the skills or the desire to lead IT related business projects. For those who simply lack the skill set, the opportunity for career advancement beckons through the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. The Project Management Institute maintains a project management body of knowledge and facilitates training, administration of examination, and PMP certification credentials. While PMP certification is not gained over night, one moves toward the credential by gaining necessary work experience, educational requirements, and sitting for the PMP exam. IT professionals holding this credential have the knowledge needed to deliver products and services within cost, schedule, and quality constraints.
Cisco Certified Network Associate
Cisco is a leader in computer hardware on routed and switched networks. The Cisco Certified Network Associate certification lets employers know that IT network administrators and engineers know the basics about network installation and configuration. The barrier to entry for this certification is relatively low since it requires no prerequisites to sit for the exam and become certified.
Certified Information Systems Security Professional
One of the fastest growing segments within the information technology sector, is information assurance or information security. Besides getting a full-fledged degree in information assurance, the best alternative for showcasing one’s computer security skills is through a credential sponsored by the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium, Inc. IT security specialists with this credential know how to design and modify networks to protect the integrity and authenticity of information systems’ data. This IT certification is particularly in demand by governmental agencies and companies within the financial sector.
There are many IT certifications available across all IT specialties, but some stand out from the rest because of the current market demand for the skill sets they represent and if you want your resume to look perfect go and get one of those. When time and money are important, many people choose to concentrate their efforts to become certified in IT areas that provide the best return on investment.