By Lisa Schmidt, PHR
MCSE, MCP, MCSA, MCTS, MCITP? Holy acronym, Batman! What does it mean? It means that being certified in one’s chosen field is still a relevant achievement and not likely to be less desirable any time soon. Certification sets those with the credential apart from – or above – those without it. Certification should be a career-long commitment because it demonstrates that you are dedicated to staying current in your field. But certifications must evolve to keep up with advancements in the field, and smart employees must evolve with them.
Granted, the alphabet certification soup of the IT industry may be the most onerous. So how is an HR professional to make an informed decision about a candidate? They learn about the position and the certs, that’s how. As part of the recruiting process, it’s an HR practitioner’s responsibility to grasp all the details about open positions within their organization as well as the KSAs (oops, an acronym for knowledge, skills, and abilities) required of each candidate. Recruiters work closely with the hiring managers to understand the experiences necessary to separate the exceptional candidate from the mediocre.
While Microsoft could have made more intuitive decisions about their certification nomenclature, don’t let that give you pause. Select your certifications based on your current job requirements or future aspirations in the field most interesting to you.
Then, when I invite you to interview, proudly fly your Geek flag and tell me all about your particular certification(s), regardless of whether newly minted or well-seasoned. What have you done with the knowledge behind the certification? The way you respond to questions is vital to backing up that string of letters behind your name.
Lisa Schmidt, PHR
Human Resources Manager
Boson Software, LLC
For more about the "new" MCSE, check out Michael Aldridge's previous blog post: http://blog.boson.com/bid/77383/The-New-MCSE-Same-as-the-Old-MCSE
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