In IT, there was a time when it was enough to show a Hiring Manager that you knew your way around a network – that you had the requisite knowledge to be an administrator. That is no longer the case. Certifications are now more important than ever, both to the hiring process and the workplace.
If you aren’t Certified, then you’re crippling your worth as a prospective employee. Particularly if you’re taking an administrative position, you need the right certifications – one of which inarguably must be Linux-related.
The numbers here are quite telling. According to a 2010 Microsoft Certified Professional Study, 91% of managers believe IT certifications are an effective means of judging a candidate’s worth. More than 80% of the same managers further believed that certified professionals make for more effective workers, enhancing the performance of their department.
This isn’t just a matter of perception, either, explains managerial expert Benjamin Roussey.
“If you are a manager and have been recruiting professionals for some time, you’ll agree that the ideal employee is more than just an experienced worker,” he writes. “They are a dedicated professional who is willing to learn new skills and adapt to the demands of their job. There is no better indication of this than a person who has some relevant IT certifications.”
“[Certifications] are also an indication that an individual is keen to keep up to date with developments taking place in his area of expertise, and that they have the discipline and determination to pursue their goals,” he adds, further noting that certifications promote a better workplace culture. They’re also an effective bargaining chip in negotiations with potential clients, some of whom refuse to work with anyone who isn’t certified.
Alright. We’ve driven home why certifications are important. But why Linux, specifically?
Simple – because it’s now bigger than ever. The past several years have seen a whirlwind of activity for the OS. 94% of the world’s top 500 supercomputers use it, and it’s the gold standard for server management – cloud or otherwise. It’s surfaced on everything from microcomputers like Raspberry Pi to gaming systems like the Steam Box.
Its growth shows no signs of stopping, and you can bet that Hiring Managers have noticed this. According to the Annual Linux Jobs report, 90% of hiring managers are looking to recruit more Linux professionals, and the rise of open cloud platforms like OpenStack and CloudStack is driving demand even higher. Not only that, the majority of managers expect either certification or formal training (54%).
That’s where The Linux Foundation comes in. Earlier this month, the non-profit foundation announced that it will bring its Linux Systems Administration (LFS201) course to the edX platform. A hands-on class designed to teach practical skills to fledgling Sysadmins, it’s also the next step up from last year’s “Intro to Linux.”
Registration requires a one-time fee of $499, which includes two attempts at the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator Exam. Students who register now can begin taking the course on August 3, 2015. For more information (or to register) click here.
As enterprise becomes more and more tech-oriented, the hiring market for IT is only going to grow more competitive. Certifications are one way of levelling the playing field between yourself and the competition. Not only can they make you look better on paper, they can also help you be better at your job, appeal to clients, and promote productivity in the teams you work with.
In short, it’s not a question of whether or not you should be certified – it’s a question of which certifications you need.
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