A professional certification is a stepping stool for individuals who are entering the workforce, changing careers, or seeking job advancement. Professional certifications can be specific to professions or products and can significantly increase your hireability and earning potential.
Earning a certification typically requires you to pass an exam and often requires you to submit an application, which might require proof of work experience, training hours, etc. But isn’t a college degree enough? According to a 2017 Bureau of Labor Statistics survey, individuals with certifications earn 30% more than individuals without certifications. In fact, individuals with bachelor’s or advanced degrees still earn 18% more if they also have certifications. Moreover, according to a 2018 Skye Learning survey, respondents with both college degrees and certifications felt their certifications were more beneficial to them on the job than their degrees.
Skye Learning’s CertSearch tool can help you browse through 153 certifications from various levels and industries, 42 of which do not require any work experience. This means that certifications are accessible to new graduates, who can use their credentials to distinguish themselves from other students entering the workforce.
Investing in certifications means investing in your future, which can lead to more job opportunities, faster career advancement, and higher pay. But what makes a certification so beneficial? A professional certification can:1. Prove your competency
Certifications earn you credibility. They stand out on your resume and LinkedIn page as badges of knowledge and hard work. During the hiring process, certifications can give you an important edge over your peers and even applicants with more job experience.2. Increase your knowledge
Certifications aren’t just for demonstrating what you already know. Most people need to study new skills, review industry-specific terminology, and learn up-to-date standards and best practices to pass certification exams. This promotes continuous improvement and makes you more effective at your job—which your employer is sure to recognize.3. Expand your network
Earning a professional credential places you within an exclusive circle of qualified individuals with similar career goals. Registering with certifying bodies or simply registering for exams can give you access to webinars, student forums, member events, and other networking opportunities.
Interested in earning a certification but new to the workforce? Skye offers certification prep courses for certifications that do not require work experience. Here are some we recommend:
- CAPM® Exam Prep Course
- CompTIA Project+® Exam Prep Course
- Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Prep Course and Exam