Anneleen Vandraager, managing director EMEA at VUE, says employing certified staff is central to a company's success.
Certification is certainly the way forward over the next few years. Companies see the value a certified employee or contractor can offer to both the professional's job and the company's bottom line, and I believe that the need for certified professionals will increase.
Certification is an issue that can be used to address part of the skills shortage. It was recently posed that an explanation for the skills shortage may be down to people simply not being trained well enough. If this is the case, then employing a skilled professional who has certification accreditation will eliminate the prospects of employing an unskilled work force or the recruitment of staff who can't back up their claimed expertise in a particular area with practical skills and knowledge.
At present, the skills shortage doesn't give skilled workers much of an incentive to spend time and money getting certified because skilled people can currently find a good job with relative ease. Certification will have an impact on the work force as the shortage gap closes because those who are certified professionals will be more likely to command the higher salaries.
As the IT department becomes more central to a company's success, it becomes vital that IT managers hire staff who really can deliver the goods.
Certified professionals offer the manager a better chance of guaranteeing results for the company. A recent independent report on Microsoft-certified professionals discovered that having at least one certified employee enables a company to decrease costs by more than £1,500 per server per year. As research like this becomes more accessible, organisations will recognise that certified professionals add value to their IT departments.
The value of certification is twofold. Firstly, for a professional's personal career progression, certification equips people with a tool to demonstrate their competence. A firm gains value from certified employees as they are more likely to impact cost-related issues and, according to the Gartner Group, well-trained employees have a tendency to be more effective in their job and more motivated.
They also show signs of increased reliability and are likely to remain working in an organisation for a longer period of time than non-certified staff.
Web-based testing makes it easier than ever before for professionals to gain specialist certification. They can now register real-time for a test of their choice over the internet and, should they need to re-schedule or cancel, they can do it via the Net at a time convenient to them. Web-based testing companies provide support both via the Web and through a dedicated hotline, so problems, should they ever occur, are dealt with quickly and efficiently.
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