What Drives IT Certifications?

I stumbled across this interesting blog post today (http://scn.sap.com/community/training-and-education/certification/blog/2012/10/11/what-drives-it-certification). Why do employees, employers, vendors, and partners get certified? John Kleeman spoke to attendees of the European Association of Test Publishers (EATP) to find out. (As some background, the Association for Test Publishers (ATP) is one of the key professional conferences in the certification industry. Microsoft Learning typically attends ATP in the United States, but I would love attend the European version at some point!)

I was struck by the reasons that employees get certified and why employers want their employees to be certified.
Employees: Why do you get certified? Certainly, one key driver is to improve your job or career prospects, but it appears that another key driver is to learn and develop skills. Certification is hard--it has to be if it's going to differentiate you from others--so if you get certified simply because you want an objective evaluation of your skills, you're showing some serious dedication and commitment to continuous lifelong learning. Of course, this makes me curious about why YOU get certified? Does the idea of using certification to learn and develop skills resonate with you? What drives you to get a certification and/or maintain one?  

Employers: Why do employers want their employees to be certified? To improve performance, obviously, but it's clear that employers realize that certification is not a guarantee for success. That being said, it certainly improves the odds of success, especially for first time implementations of new technology. To me, that suggests that the most valuable certifications are those in newer technologies and that certifying early--when a new version of a technology is just released--may give you an advantage over those who aren't certified, especially in those in those organizations that are rolling out the latest and greatest. Hmmm... this seems to tie back to that idea of certification as a mechanism to learn and develop new skills. Very interesting, indeed.
What do you think about the key drivers of IT certification that John described? Did he miss why you get certified or why you want your employees to be certified? I'd love to hear your thoughts

Source: http://borntolearn.mslearn.net


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