Certification Townhall: Event Recap

Our speakers for the January Meeting were Amy Carrado, Sr Director, Research & Market Intel at CompTIA; and Eric Younkin, CTO of Go Maverick Group. 

We had 24 attendees at the meeting, with many good questions and comments.

Some notes from the event:

  • Hot Certs from Burning Glass: ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library), CompTIA Security+
  • 80% of HR said Certs were valuable
  • Majority say they are valuable for training staff too.
  • Majority identify that they find certifications are valuable in general.
  • Can Job experience supplement a certification? Yes, per Amy recognized more and more as a way to validate skills.
  • Microsoft Certifications have gone way down the list, from a perspective of what employers are looking for. 
  • Are CompTIA Certs available online now? It depends, but most are offered online now due to the pandemic. 
  • Storage Certifications: Niche market, limited usefulness. Depends on the vendor and the client. 
Certs in Greatest Demand

Eric’s Comments

  • Go Maverick finds harder to find skill sets.
  • Their clients identify certifications they want or skills they want to see.
  • Certification supplementing experience?
  • Robert Half experience
    • Entry level roles: A+, Security+ Network+ were great ways to demonstrate some skills 
  • Certs are a great way to bridge the experience gap
  • Some that stick out to him:
    • CISSP – cross functional value
    • Cisco CCNP
    • ITIL is a very good one, almost regardless of role
  • Obscure Ones
    • AWS ones can get very granular
    • Same for Microsoft, very granular and specific
    • Amy: another example, software development: Salesforce Platform Developer Cert.
  • Observations:
    • Interesting to not see cloud anything near the top of the list, whether CompTIA or ther.
    • CompTIA Cloud+ is not very well represented
      • Newer?
  • Craig made an observation that Microsoft has retired most of it’s existing Certs and are pushing all Azure Certs.
  • CompTIA Certs:
    • Are they more entry-level? What’s better for more senior level?
    • Cyber Security
    • CASS+
Burning Glass Stats
  • Study and Prep?
    • Cert Master tool from CompTIA
    • Practice Tests available (Actual Test website)
    • Microsoft Study Guides Helpful
    • Craig: if you fail on an exam, jot down notes about as much as you can remember, as soon as you get out of the exam, then study the notes when prepping 2nd time.
    • Blake has taken some online study courses to prep.
      • He advises to tailor your study methods to what style best suits you.
    • Review Test Taking Strategies Powerpoint from George Squillace (former New Horizons instructor) 
  • Tony /Eric
    • Seeing a lot of MSP’s requiring tech staff to get one new certification per year. 
    • Positive trend in reimbursements, but some companies are ensuring it’s directly pertinent to your job, though.
    • One employer is pushing staff to get reimbursed through State of Ohio Programs.

This event was recorded and is available for viewing by Members of the Akron Chapter of AITP. If you are not a member, Join Today

Craig is the President of the Akron AITP Chapter. He is the principal consultant and Database Administrator with Purnell Dataworks LLC.

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