How Certifications Can Help You Advance in Career

Learn more about the perks of certifications for your career and how to choose the right ones.
How Certifications Can Help You Advance in Career
Jacob Wilson

With the rapid evolution of online learning, there is no shortage of certifications you can pursue. They can make a significant difference and take your career to a whole new level.

IT professionals who gained new skills in 2020 received an average raise of $12,000-$13,000.

Let’s learn more about the perks of certifications for your career and how to choose the right ones.

Negotiating a Higher Salary

Getting industry-relevant certifications benefits your business on multiple levels. First, employee education is crucial to hiring managers. They look for long-life learners who go the extra mile to improve industry skills and knowledge.

For you, that is a chance to set yourself apart from other candidates and land your dream job.

Above all, as a highly-skilled candidate, you will be able to request higher pay during salary negotiations.

Second, some employees get a raise by earning a relevant certification. That helps you build trust with your employers and boost industry competency. To retain top performers, employers will increase your pay and even reimburse you for training that aligns with your role.

Statistics back me up on that. According to a study by Simplilearn, the most significant benefits of certifications are higher job titles and higher salaries. For example, project management certification holders reported a 20% higher pay than those without certificates.

Individuals with six or more IT certifications can make $10,000 more than their peers with just one certification.

The IT Skills and Salary Report states the same. Individuals with six or more IT certifications can make $10,000 more than their peers with just one certification. The same study claims that IT professionals who gained new skills in 2020 received an average raise of $12,000-$13,000.

Advancing your Career and Landing a Big Promotion

Gaining a trusted certification is a way to prove your competence and show you are ready to take on additional responsibilities. To climb the corporate ladder, you first need to demonstrate your ability to operate in your desired role.

Certifications can give you industry prestige and a significant competitive advantage. That is particularly important when new promotion opportunities come along. Even if your peers have the same qualifications, the initiative you demonstrated in improving your skills and knowledge can be a tie-breaker.

HR managers value your dedication to your profession and the desire to keep advancing your knowledge. Over the past few years, training and certification opportunities have become an effective employee development method.

Gaining New Professional Opportunities

Even if you are not actively searching for new professional challenges, earning relevant certifications may create new opportunities for you. From an HR manager’s viewpoint, a broader skill set makes you a top candidate. The capability to assume diverse roles can create a whole new career path for you.

Today, both small and large businesses are struggling with a talent shortage.

By adding your education and training certificates to your CV, LinkedIn, and similar places, you will put yourself on many more companies’ radar.

Now, to make yourself attractive to the top companies in your industry, choose your training programs and certifications strategically. Identify the major trends that will dominate your niche in the next few years.

Learn to tell short-term fad from long-term market trends. That way, you will determine in which direction your career should grow in the future.

For starters, you can analyze job posting sites, such as Indeed or LinkedIn Jobs. These places will help you understand the current industry trends and analyze employer requirements. Knowing that, you will narrow down your list of certifications and focus on the right ones.

Improved Experience and Gaining Industry Credibility

As your personal and professional responsibilities grow, it may be hard to focus on acquiring new skills. Already having too much on your plate, you may feel anxious and overworked — feeling like this will prevent you from learning new skills.

While it can be challenging, continuous learning is the backbone of your career. It provides you with new career opportunities.

Most importantly, continuous training positions you as a trusted and skilful professional. Over time, your knowledge will make you a go-to person at your company. You will become THAT GIRL/GUY who synthesizes the team, looks out for others, closes deals, and finds a way to make things happen.

In short, continued learning shows that you are a leader in the workplace.

How to Choose the Right Certification?

Now that you know the benefits of certifications, it is time to pursue the right ones that will give your career a nudge in the right direction.

Before you decide to invest your time and money into a training program, make sure it aligns with your interests, professional objectives, industry trends, and career goals.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

What do I want to accomplish?

The first step to choosing the right certification is to set clear goals. For example, do you want to land a higher salary? In that case, you should focus on top-paying certifications.

Is it to improve industry skills and knowledge? For example, if you are a healthcare professional, maybe you want to pursue an ACLS certification to help patients in cardiovascular emergencies.

What am I passionate about?

Remember those super-boring education programs or college lectures? Do not let that happen when selecting your certification program. Unless it is obligatory, you do not have to choose training programs you are not interested in.

On the contrary, pick the ones that will keep you engaged and invested.

Every certification you obtain should be an investment in your career path.

What do I expect from training?

Certifications play a fundamental role in career advancement. However, remember that they are not created equal. While some training programs are the stepping stones for industry beginners, others have more industry prominence. Also, determine whether the course is trusted and recognized in your industry.

That is why you should do detailed research to determine whether a certification is in line with your objectives. When choosing certification options, analyze the following:

  • The requirements
  • Whether the course is accredited
  • How much time you will have to invest
  • How the certification can benefit your career in the long-term
  • Whether you need to re-certify it after a period of time

Over to You

The career benefits of industry-relevant certifications are immense. They open the door to new jobs, career advancement opportunities, and higher salaries.

Choose the right training programs that are aligned with your career goals and company values.

Any questions about choosing the right certifications? Please, feel free to ask in the comments below! 👇

Author Bio

Jacob Wilson is a business consultant, and an organizational psychologist, based in Brisbane. Passionate about marketing, social networks, and business in general. In his spare time, he writes a lot about new business strategies and digital marketing for Bizzmark blog.

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