CompTIA is the leading provider of IT certifications that are vendor neutral. The most popular are A+, Network+ and Security+. CompTIA certifications are valuable to both entry-level and more experienced IT professionals. Vendor neutrality is one of the most important benefits of the CompTIA certifications. None of them is bound to VMWare, Cisco, Novell, HP, or Microsoft. Although many people claim that CompTIA certifications are not worth it, this is simply not true. As you read the rest of this article, you will find out how CompTIA certifications can help IT professionals to retain the edge over other those are not certified.
Major Benefits of Acquiring CompTIA Certifications
1. Develop Strong Base of IT Knowledge and Skills
CompTIA certifications help you to build a very solid foundation of IT knowledge and skills. These certifications add value to your resume and give you a competitive edge when you are applying for jobs. In fact, CompTIA certifications are a common prerequisite to qualify for many IT jobs. If you start with a higher certification like Microsoft’s MCSE before you take the A+ certification, you may feel that you are saving time, but this will eventually delay you because you are missing out on the fundamentals. It is like skipping the basic knowledge of synonyms and antonyms in a basic grammar course and then heading straight for a course on how to paraphrase, it will be very difficult to cope.
2. Boost Your Professional Confidence
One of the most valuable benefits of having a CompTIA certification, especially when you are new to IT, is raising your personal confidence. When you successfully obtain your certification, you will have proof that you have sufficient knowledge about your career. And this boosts your credibility and enhances your determination to take on new challenges.
3. Obtain Extra Credit for Other Certifications
Several IT companies including Novell, HP, Microsoft, Cisco and others give recognition to CompTIA certifications like A+ and Network+ in their certification tracks. In addition, there are several universities and colleges that give college credit to students who have CompTIA certifications.
4. Raise Your Income and Discover Fresh Career Opportunities
Several organizations and IT companies now make CompTIA certification mandatory for some positions. In fact, many job adverts list these certifications as a fundamental requirement. Several surveys have shown that, on the average, IT professionals, who are certified, earn a higher salary than those who are not, in the same job position.
Specific Advantages of the Most Popular CompTIA Certifications
The type of jobs and the career advantages you enjoy depend on the type of certification that you are able to obtain. Let’s take a brief look at three popular options:
Comptia A+ certification is now considered to be the industry standard for measuring a computer technicians knowledge of hardware and software. It also provides a valuable foundation for your IT career. A+ certification enables you to apply for jobs like help desk specialist, technical support representative, computer technician, and field service technician. Having an A+ certification on your resume demonstrates to prospective employers that you are highly motivated and committed to excellence in your career. Thus, most A+ certified professionals earn at least 5 to 15 percent more than those who are not yet certified. Additionally, your A+ certification will give you the confidence required to start a local computer repair shop if you want to become self employed. It can also provide the basic knowledge you need to begin a local PC assembly business.
CompTIA Network+ certification creates opportunities for you to take up job positions such as network technician, network administrator, network engineer and several other related positions. The Network+ training and certification exam covers the fundamental networking concepts that virtually you need to know, particularly if you intend to work in any of the positions mentioned above. Microsoft, Novell, and Cisco recognize CompTIA Network+ as part of their certification track. The Network+ certification track helps you to develop a sound knowledge of TCPIP fundamentals. It also enables you to acquire the basic understanding of Windows networking skills, and active directory. You will also learn how to connect computers using different operating systems including the three most popular ones: Windows, Mac OS and Linux. After your Network+ training, you will have virtually all the basic networking skills you need to pass technical interviews. Learning other more advanced networking technologies will also become easier and faster.
Security+ is an excellent certification because it enables you to apply and get jobs that need a sound knowledge of IT security. For instance, you can work as a network security engineer, security analyst, or security specialist. Many IT companies like IBM, Symantec, HP, Motorola as well as the U.S. armed forces hire Security+ certified professionals. Security+ gives you essential foundational training in IT security. This certification was developed on the same knowledge framework as the more advanced exams like CISA and CISSP. Therefore, it can be one of the most effective ways to begin your career in IT security. Security+ serves an elective for other IT vendors like Cisco and Microsoft. In particular, Microsoft accepts Security+ as an elective in the certification tracks for MCSE and MCSA. You may also use this certification to obtain course credits in some universities. CompTIA Security+ also meets the standards set by Department of Defense (DOD 8570). Obtaining this certification qualifies you for the technical level 2 and the management level 1 job positions. If you are planning to work for the U.S. government, either as contractor or as full time employee, in the area of IT security, you should get this certification. IT security is now a major concern for most business owners and managers. So they prefer to hire candidates who have demonstrated their commitment to security. And one of the best ways to do this is with your Security+ certification.
All CompTIA certifications provide immense benefits to IT professionals. They help you to lay an excellent foundation for your IT career. Having one or more CompTIA certifications tells potential employers that you are a more committed and enlightened candidate and you will be able to earn a better salary than those who are not certified.