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Ask Slashdot: Are Any Certifications Worth Going For? 317

An anonymous reader writes: I am an IT professional in my 30s and have had some form if IT employment for the last 15 years. I've worked my way from technical support to IS manager, but my career seems to have stalled. I have a fancy 4-year degree in Information Systems (I was never much of a programmer) from an actual college, and a good deal of real-world experience combined with reading the odd technical book here and there to keep abreast of what's going on in the world of tech, but what I don't have is any certifications. None.

When I was a poor student fresh from college, I decided that certifications were a waste of money, since the jobs I was applying for at the time didn't care about them, and the tests were several hundred dollars each. Now, it seems most jobs I see listed want some certifications, and I suspect HR systems are weeding out resumes that don't have the correct alchemical formula of certifications.

So my question is: are any certifications now worth it? If so, where do I start? I will probably stick to the track I'm on (I'm better at managing than developing). Going to classes might be an option, but I'd prefer to be able to self-study if possible to work around being on-call constantly (and, to be blunt, classes are expensive). I don't want to stump up for a class only to find out I don't actually like the class or the material or the certification isn't actually what I thought it was.
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Ask Slashdot: Are Any Certifications Worth Going For?

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  • by scubacuda ( 411898 ) <> on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:18PM (#48552081)

    I would argue that certs with practicals (CCIE, JNCIE, RHCE, etc) tend to hold their value much better than those that can simply be gotten by taking tests.

    • by ruckc ( 111190 ) * <> on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:20PM (#48552105) Homepage

      I agree with this. I just took the RHSA, and I can honestly say that having book knowledge wouldn't allow you to pass if you've never done some of the tasks before.

      • Hmm doing a dictionary search (Chrome extension), RHSA is

        The RSHA, or Reichssicherheitshauptamt was an organization subordinate to Heinrich Himmler in his dual capacities as Chef der Deutschen Polizei and Reichsführer-SS

        You must have "done some of the tasks" before.

    • by s.petry ( 762400 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @10:01PM (#48552291)

      The multiple guess tests show no practical application for knowledge. I have met plenty of people with certifications that are worthless, and the people with them were just as useless.. sometimes with dozens of these tests. These people were duped into spending tons of cash to get these certificates and had no practical knowledge. Knowing how to enter a netmask in someone's GUI does not mean you understand what a netmask is, or what a broadcast address is, or how to calculate either from the other.

      RHCE, CEH, etc.. require practical knowledge. Having work experience can be, and usually is, enough to compensate for the lack of a certificate. The more experience you have the less essential a certification is. I have been in the business for nearly 3 decades, and quite honestly I'm never asked about certificates. Go back even 15 years and people did ask, and I did have some certificates. Today, I'm never asked and have a steady stream of requests to review job offers and even suggest candidates.

      • Many more recent certs are no longer relying solely on multiple choice. For example, the past several revisions of the CCNA exam have become more and more focused on network simulator questions and multiple choice has been relegated to checking for things best asked through multiple choice. The multiple-choice only cert test is a relic which is well on the way to being gone (at least in the networking area).

        • I am researching taking it as I see job postings requiring them for non network admins.

          It is rediculous and overkill and nearly impossible to pass without prepping for 6 months and buying your own switches and routers as the simulators won't cover what you need to pass all for a silly assocites level.

      • by AK Marc ( 707885 )

        Knowing how to enter a netmask in someone's GUI does not mean you understand what a netmask is, or what a broadcast address is, or how to calculate either from the other.

        If you don't know what a netmask is, you shouldn't be able to pass CCNA (though could get an MCSE or RHCE). I was just chatting with a server admin here and they don't know the difference between a switch and router (almost all switches are L-3 switches, and almost all routers will bridge ports, so is there a difference?).

        • If you don't know what a netmask is, you shouldn't be able to pass CCNA (though could get an MCSE or RHCE). I was just chatting with a server admin here and they don't know the difference between a switch and router (almost all switches are L-3 switches, and almost all routers will bridge ports, so is there a difference?).

          The functionality can be very similar and the lines are increasingly blurred but the key difference is that switches have ASIC's to do the majority of the work while routers have general purpose processors that do most of the work.

          • by mysidia ( 191772 ) on Tuesday December 09, 2014 @12:49AM (#48552895)

            What the vendor calls the device is more about what the primary intended place for the device is on the network; it is a reflection on the "standard" configuration of the device, or at least the defaults.

            The problem with this assessment "Switches use ASICs; routers don't" is it is only true for low-end devices. The only way you are getting away without ASICs is if you are in a small-business, branch office, or Enterprise WAN with little traffic.

            Switches require ASICs, but "routers" need them too. Routers typically need more advanced ASICs, since they need to look at Layer 3 network prefixes, not just a simple list of MAC addresses for L2 bridging.

            The Cisco ASR routers use ASICs extensively, ditto for 76xx routers; in fact, they are exclusively used for forwarding, there is very little or no software-based switching through a high-end router. If a condition occurs where you run out of hardware TCAM or lose CEF and revert to non-ASIC-based software switching, it will be a very bad day indeed.

            Juniper M/T/MX series edge routers are the same way. All forwarding is done in a separate ASIC-based hardware forwarding plane. Packets are not interpreted or forwarded by software. Even firewall rules, QoS policies, etc, are handled by ASICs on a reasonably high end router.

            Once upon a time there were cases where you needed to upgrade PBB cards or policy feature cards on routers to add to policy management/access list functionality. These are definitely hardware-driven functions.

            Common Layer 3 switches in fixed access configs have similar capability in some respects but more limited featuresets and limited capacity for table sizes, typically; you often don't have quite the same IP policy management features as on a full blown router; some of the L3 switches don't even have decent QoS (which is terrible).

            Also if you need to take a full BGP table; you are not going to want to use a fixed-configuration Layer 3 access switch to do that --- since it probably lacks the memory, and even if it had the memory, generally there will be no supervisor redundancy.

            The requirement to support a huge IP forwarding table, which requires extra memory and CPU, is what an Edge router needs on a multihomed network.

            So there are clearly devices that specialize in being better edge routers than switches.

          • ASR1000 routers do CEF in hardware
            Cat4900s do IPv6 in software

            Fact is, it's generally functionality per port. Hardware is nice (FPGA is much better). The real deal is, can it do NAT? Can it do application layer packet inspection? Can it encapsulate traffic in GRE tunnels? Can it...

            Routers are the devices of a gazillion functions.
            Switches are devices which move packets from A to B.

            Devices like 6880s blur lines because they add features like NAT to a switch.

            Another great idea is... a switch typically supports
        • Which is why IT departments are now requiring CCNA in addition to the MCSE. Wan engineers are tired of sys admins opening tickets.

          The CCNA is way overkill just like requiring network admins to be mcse certified in case they use a shared drive. But to run viritual machines you need to setup viritual networks and subnet and and diagnose connection problems

          • by ruir ( 2709173 )
            The problem is more than "opening tickets". A sysadmin without some basic networking knowledge is a serious shortcoming.
        • by mysidia ( 191772 )

          Almost all switches are L-3 switches, and almost all routers will bridge ports, so is there a difference?

          A Layer 3 switch is just another word that means the exact same thing as router.

          In fact.... the world's very first router ran on what is now an ancient microcomputer, and it was called a packet switch

          Usually, when a vendor has multiple product lines and they describe some products as Layer 3 Switches and some products as Routers; what they are actually telling you is what primary task the device h

        • If you don't know what a netmask is, you shouldn't be able to pass CCNA (though could get an MCSE or RHCE).

          That's absurd. Whatever your opinion of MCSE, you aren't going to get one without knowing what a subnet mask is.

          • That it exists and perhaps some memorization of the major ABC classes. Nothing about what it actually is or anything about the math involved in calculating it.

          • by AK Marc ( 707885 )
            As absurd as it is, I know more than one person that got an MCSE and didn't know what a subnet mask is (other than you always set it to for a server). When I got my MCSE, it would have helped to know what it was, but wasn't required.
          • As an engineer who has implemented IP in VHDL for a custom device, I can safely say that most people don't actually know what subnet mask is. They know what it look likes, but ask them to explain why we even have a subnet mask as opposed to simply using prefix length and most CCIEs will go cold on that.
        • Your server admin is lying about his RHCE. The RHCE should have no trouble turning a host with a dozen NICS into a L2 switch with VLANS, span ports, and adding L3 and above functionality. Your Cisco device is important, but is well understood and frankly, somewhat child's play to an RHCE.

          • by AK Marc ( 707885 )

            The skills you assert aren't tested for. Most Linux admins I know don't know networking at all. For RHCE, you need to know how to put in settings in a server. But not what they do or what they mean. The Cisco device isn't well understood. The last RHCE I dealt with configured a duplex mismatch and blamed the Cisco for doing what he told it to do. The Cisco device is simple and understood by people who know basics of networking. But RHCEs don't need to know to pass t
        • I don't believe someone should be able to pass a RHCE or even a higher level MCSE without understanding something so basic as a netmask and broadcast address. I have seen plenty of Junior level admins stuff a /24 netmask into a /25 and have network problems that they can't explain. A "good" SA should be able to catch and correct this without need to find the network team to debug the issue for them. And yes, I have seen many MSCE holders have to traverse that path and bother their Network team for a simp

      • by dbIII ( 701233 )

        certifications that are worthless

        That's a very good point. When you can repeatedly tell the world that you are an engineer without an actual qualification, or experience, that resembles an engineering degree in any way it is natural that you would think that way.
        The "I'm an engineer and I say steel doesn't get soft when hot so 9/11 was faked" from you was a blight on a profession that you are not a member of.

      • Are you a Certified Architect?

        Same advice to the OP, look into an Open Group Architect certification.

    • I know employers who want talk to you if you do not have both the ccna and mcsa as much as we bash paper mcses here.

      HR uses them as a filtering mechanism and colleagues respect you more. I had perspective employer make the MS certification requirement being current a condition of employment. Goes outdated? You're fired.

    • CCIE is worth it if you have a passion for routers and networking. The rest (including the other Cisco certs) are trash.

      Your career is stalled because you're not interested in programming and don't have an easy knack for management. You've reached the pinnacle of general systems administration and no certifications will change that. There will be more raises as you refine your expertise but you're no longer on a fast growth curve.

      If I'm wrong, go get your MBA or MSCS and your career will un-stall.

    • by xQx ( 5744 )

      The CCIE isn't a certification you just go and get!

      Maybe you can just sit down and study pass the CCIE qualification exam, but the CCIE Lab is an 8 hour puzzle that only the most proficient Cisco engineers can pass.

      If you're a CCIE and you just woke up one day and said "I'm going to go and get my CCIE qualification" and thought the CCIE Lab was a straightforward (not easy, but you know, not has hard as getting a postgraduate degree) affair, feel free to let me know in reply!

      Were you thinking of the CCNA? In

      • by mysidia ( 191772 )

        But telling someone with no Cisco training to "Go and get a CCIE" is like telling a year 12 student to "Go and get a PhD".

        Well..... I think there is one good reason to tell this to someone who has no certifications and has stated that they think certs aren't worth it: It should be a humbling experience, and hopefully they won't get to the point of blowing stupid amounts of money on an exam they can't possibly expect to pass. :)

    • by mysidia ( 191772 )

      These are valuable certifications. They are also (I suspect) entirely out of reach for the OP for now, probably, seeing as he's in his 30s and has not pursued even the lower level certs. The thing is, these certs are somewhat progressive, and you need to have some experience preparing and taking certification tests before you take the slightly harder tests like the CCIE written, which is still, I understand, a cakewalk compared to the IE lab.

      You don't just wake up one day and decide to sit the CCIE;

      • by ruir ( 2709173 )
        It depends on your objectives, and which market you are working on. I have LPI certs, as I do not work with RH, and I am always getting contacted. Experience counts too, certs are to get you on the door.
    • I am heading for a CCIE attempt next month. I was a live long protocol engineer, software engineering, OS design engineer, compiler guy. I have little respect for the computer field where there's no real math involved.

      I quit programming about 3 years back. I don't even have the CCIE yet and I've moved WAY UP the list. I have dozens of certs (all earned). IT is great since it's super easy and all you typically do is the same stuff other people did before you. There's always a web page that explains it for yo
  • by UnderAttack ( 311872 ) * on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:25PM (#48552131) Homepage

    If you are serious about infosec certifications, check out GIAC ( . The certs are very applied and test practical knowledge (e.g. they are open book... no need to test how well you can memorize stuff). CISSP is good to get you started in the field.

    • by Minupla ( 62455 )

      +1 to CISSP, I had essentially the same experience as the OP, and decided that IS manager tedious. I went and wrote my CISSP, got 'lucky' a couple of times with breach issues and poof, 5 yrs later I'm a Sr Infosec Manager.

      While it doesn't have a practical component, I've met very few people who honestly say they left the exam knowing if they passed or failed. Most nerve wracking test I've ever sat for anyways. And most of infosec (absent specialties such as pentest, and even then arguably) is 90% thinkin

    • by lucm ( 889690 )

      Those certifications are very expensive, and they require a fair amount of relevant experience. They are not a good way to get started in a field, they are a strong commitment to an existing career path. Same as a PMI certification. Very bad choice for someone who comes on Slashdot to ask for general career advice.

  • Get an MBA (Score:4, Interesting)

    by plopez ( 54068 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:28PM (#48552145) Journal

    You are already moving in that direction and admittedly not a programmer. It is basically a paper chase not too far removed from a cert but non-revocable. You will have an IS degree + years of experience + an MBA. There s a large amount of career potential in that.

    But stop hanging out at /., instead lurk around at and to ensure you know all the latest trends.

    • What's

    • Definitely the better option. In your mid-thirties you're coming up on your "best before" date for a lot of IT jobs, if only because employers will assume you're not up-to-date on the latest and greatest (and because they'd rather pay someone who is younger and less likely to object to work conditions that can be pretty bad).

      It's either "up or out" time.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      That won't work. I did it. Getting a MBA will not automatically get you into management or into the business side.

      What will happen is that after 2+ years and a ton of money, you'll be back to doing what you were doing but with very expensive letters after your name - that no one in technology really cares about. I went to a top 40 school - not good enough for a lucrative consulting gigs like the Harvard guys get.

      What I advise people who ask is first move into the business side or leadership roles - like a t

    • Actually, being in the IT field with an aptitude for management would make him the ideal candidate for a PMI PMP (Project Manager Professional) certification. You need to know some stuff about IT, like the effort it takes for development, the kinds of tools and system available, the tradeoffs between budget, time, and quality, etc. Lots of companies (and governments) look for PMP certifications for project manager positions. And since the OP doesn't particularly like coding, he can spend his whole day in

      • by lucm ( 889690 )

        In more than 15 years I haven't met a certified PM who lasted more than a few years in that kind of job. The good ones evolve towards senior management, the bad ones end up leading scrum master workshops where people spend their time openly playing angry birds on their phone then use the cheap printout certificate of achievement as an ironic prop in their cubicle.

        I wish some stats were available to back my claims, but I suspect that PM is the discipline in IT with the highest burn-out and/or suicide rate. O

    • by mysidia ( 191772 )

      You will have an IS degree + years of experience + an MBA. There s a large amount of career potential in that.

      Or go for a Doctor of Business Administration. Anyways... I thought the snazzy thing these days was "MBA Equivalent"; you know... like getting a Masters in Finance and taking some other random classes. So you are slightly differentiated from the standard 'MBA' curriculua :)

  • by Crazy Taco ( 1083423 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:32PM (#48552167)
    Since it sounds like you aren't really technical anymore and don't have a desire to be technical, then I wouldn't recommend any of the technical certifications (RHCE, etc). Those are going to get you job offers for things you don't want to do. You should probably look for something more along the lines of Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, or something of that ilk. That will really help you manage projects and it probably looks good on a resume. Just my 2 cents.
  • I interviewed someone with certifications. They had no skill.

    I work in an office with no certifications.

    Certifications might get you a raise, might not, averages on not. Won't get you a job. Averages on won't.

    It might get you past the HR filter. But the best way to get past the HR filter is know someone. Good old fashioned networking.

    If you have a job, get a cert and get a raise. If you have nothing else to do, get a cert and possibly get past the HR filter. But be prepared for the non-cert questions

  • My company, which is otherwise one of the best places you are ever likely to work, requires all employees to take and pass at least the SalesForce Developers cert. They do pay for it, but it's probably a big advantage to have it before applying.
  • by Sivaraj ( 34067 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:49PM (#48552247)

    For you profile, ITIL certification may be worth looking at. It gives knowledge essential for managing large IS departments, implementations, and data centres. It may not be as glamorous as PMP, but is essential part of managing IT for large companies. It is still a rare certification so it may actually be worth it. Being an IS manager you may appreciate many sections of the standard and contrast it with the way of doing things in your previous jobs.

  • Who wants to work for a bunch of clowns who rely on certification to hire people? It is a clear sign the HR guys don't have a clue about skills and competences and decided to outsource the job to learn about it. So, seriously, do you believe such working environment can be of any value? Do you believe your skills will really be recognized?
  • by Proudrooster ( 580120 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @09:58PM (#48552275) Homepage

    It doesn't sound like you are a in the trenches programmer / admin so, why not take the strengths that you have (higher level technical ability and management) and work toward becoming a business process person. Being able to speak tech and business is quite valuable. Six Sigma / Lean are quite popular these days in organizations looking to become more efficient in their process then support the process with technology systems if appropriate. PMM is some sort of Project Management Methodology Certification, don't know much about it, but it seems popular in tech management circles.

  • by erp_consultant ( 2614861 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @10:00PM (#48552285)

    It looks like you want to continue on the management track. In that case, your best best is to get an MBA. Yes, it's difficult and expensive but you might be able to get your employer to pay for at least part of it. I think that certifications are generally better for hands-on types. As a manager you're not likely to get much of that. If you just want to nibble around the edges in the technology then look at taking some of the free online courses. You won't get degree or any course credit out of it but it will give you an exposure to it.

  • ...the ones mentioned in the job postings you want to apply for. As for real world value (outside of getting your resume past a text filter) most have very little. The big practical certs mentioned in other comments in here are the exceptions but the vast majority are just extra revenue for the vendors.
  • by Matt_Bennett ( 79107 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @10:12PM (#48552355) Homepage Journal

    An MBA is a vehicle to convince other people that have MBAs that you believe that an MBA is necessary to work with other people that have MBAs that share in the misguided notion that having an MBA qualifies you to manage a business. Really, it is a ticket into a network of folks that believe that shortcuts and not actual work create a business.

    Most certifications are like MBAs- except that they are shortcuts for HR resume screens, who use them as an easy filter and to avoid accountability that the people that they let through are qualified... "these applicants are CERTIFIED!" ... If you have the experience and you know someone, you will get the job, if not, you're in the pool of "everyone else" that has a certification. The most important factor in getting a job is networking.

    • by ruir ( 2709173 )
      If you know someone, you can more easily get the job, but then the certs helps him convince the others. You won't be the only one knowing someone inside.
  • Some suggestions (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Okian Warrior ( 537106 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @10:17PM (#48552375) Homepage Journal

    Go to Toastmasters and get a CC ("Competent Communicator") or any of theit further awards. It'll teach you how to present and interact with others in a professional scenario.

    Pick a karate school you like and get a black belt. It'll teach you discipline and focus, and help you keep your health as you get older.

    Join the SCA and work yourself up to becoming a knight. If you take it seriously it'll teach you honor and integrity.

    Take first aid, CPR, and EMT training. Take some survival courses.

    Take MIT courses from edX [] or Coursera [] for the certificate and grade.

  • I'm your same age cohort, same specialization, same years of experience, only I have no degree and I stayed out of management.

    Certifications are for the inexperienced. My utter lack of credentials combined with my long history of being well-paid to do the work IS my meta-certification, if you get what I am saying.
  • I was laid off earlier this year, and like you, did not have any certs. From my research, the one that seems to pay off the best, and is in reasonable demand is ITIL. If you want to go more technical, look at CCNA and A+. All are fairly cheap and especially the ITIL can be fairly easy to study for and pass if you've been working in IT management for a while.
    • by ruir ( 2709173 )
      I cannot the ITIL demand. I always heard of it, though it was a big deal. I had to take a mandatory ITIL certification here, and it boils down to rules written by some old timers British bureaucrats that you have to memorise. What a boatload of hype for nothing.
  • by afabbro ( 33948 ) on Monday December 08, 2014 @10:49PM (#48552515) Homepage

    The main problem with certs can be demonstrating by googling the cert title or number + "dumps". You will find the exact questions and answers for most tests. (More on "most" in a moment.) I don't mean a detailed outline - I mean the full text of the question, the possible answers, and which one is correct. Memorize the answers and you pass the cert.

    As someone who periodically participates in hiring, I don't see much value in certs. I've had the experience of people who had certs who didn't know their stuff. I've never known any employer who given a choice between someone with many years of experience and someone with a cert, would choose the latter.

    There are other problems with certs. I've always found the format is quite ridiculous. Why should I memorize things? If they test concepts, that'd be one thing, but often certs are "which of these commands is correct" kind of questions. What, am I trapped on a desert island with a datacenter to administer and no manuals?

    That said, certs can't hurt. I find them valuable to study for though less to actually take. Vendors outline everything to get a basic knowledge, and that's useful to go over. The only time I see real value in certs is

    • Your employer is a government agency or some kind of big bureaucracy and they require the cert for a position.
    • Some vendors will only extend certain partnerships ("Gold VAR" or whatever) to companies that have X number of certified technicians
    • Your company is providing services and wants to be able to say "all our techs are certified in X" for marketing purposes

    All that said...the exception to the above is the certs that do have some value. These are the certs that you have to pass a lab for: RHCE, Oracle Certified Master, Cisco's CCIE, etc. A CCIE is highly valuable - those guys bill very well.

  • In your case, certifications won't likely help you much.

    I would say, that since you're asking the question, you probably are in the wrong field.

    You're in a field with many bright, observant people and you haven't really bothered to pay close enough attention to the field around you but you call yourself an IS manager. I would say your problem is not certifications, its that you're just not that good or at a bear minimum, you aren't trying very hard and thats why your career is stalled.

    With 15 years 'experi

  • You want a certification for a good career? Certified HVAC Technician.

  • "Certified" is the keyword for recruiters to discard your resume. It means you have no experience in the subject beyond a one week course. Instead, take a real class in a subject you won't to work in and that has a reasonable carrier potential. For example, Big Data technologies such as Hadoop, Cassandra and Lucene have reasonable earning potential. Even though you are aiming to be a manager, make sure you can setup the components and run, say, simple Hadoop jobs hands on so you have a clue what you will as

  • I am currently doing Introduction to Functional Programming [] and I am very impressed on how much it has helped to get into Haskell. Earlier I've tried reading "Learn yourself a Haskell" and "Real World Haskell" but having to do excercises and labs made the difference (for me)
  • by Joe_Dragon ( 2206452 ) on Tuesday December 09, 2014 @12:57AM (#48552935)

    H1B and the will to work 60-80 hours a week

  • by David_Hart ( 1184661 ) on Tuesday December 09, 2014 @01:09AM (#48552979)

    If you are in IT management and feel that your skills are best suited to spend the rest of your career in management, then you should work on a Masters degree (i.e. MBA or Masters in IT Management). Certifications are largely for skilled IT workers who actually do the work. Managers, on the other hand, tend to focus on strategy, keeping track of work and work assignments, reporting, etc. Usually for management positions, relevant experience covers any hands-on IT knowledge needed.

  • It seriously depends. In my specialty, having the cert is actually the primary method for getting contracts. Most consumers of the technology I work with go directly to the source and use their "find a consultant" feature, which you can only be listed on if you are certified. With that being said, I stopped paying for certs in other things like CC**, MCSE's, etc, many years ago. Never once, have I ever been asked if I was certified in anything by anyone other than some schmuck recruiter fishing for a new re
  • I try to take two certs or something of a similar level every year.
    The reasons are:
    1) Management likes them. Having certs increases your chance of getting that interview.
    2) They force you to learn parts of the product you normally don't use. This is the main thing for me, it gets me out of the items I normally admin and that the users primarily use and forces me to learn parts of the product I would not.

    The saying goes certs will get you interviewed, experience will get you the job.
  • Sometimes process is more important than technical competence. A scrum master certification might get you recognized for seeing the bigger picture and potentially affecting change in a team. In addition to just scrum, the PSM course also touches on TDD, definition of done and many things that tie directly into the development process.

  • by Tom ( 822 ) on Tuesday December 09, 2014 @04:34AM (#48553455) Homepage Journal

    So my question is: are any certifications now worth it?

    Depends on who pays for them.

    Your current employer, or the unemployment agency or someone else? Go for any and all you can get.

    You yourself? Check the job offers of jobs you care about. Make a list of the certifications that are mentioned there and check the top two or three (most mentionings). Do them if they are affordable.

    Certifications are largely a scam or a shakedown, take your pick. They teach you nothing, and they check your ability to memorize test questions more than they test your actual abilities. I've got the test papers from CISM still here, and while my 15 years of IT security experience helped me pass it almost without learning, any buffon who's never even seen a computer could've passed the test by simply learning by heart the contents of one folder.

  • ITIL certs are in great demand. A single search on Inceed has 1,600+ jobs, from $60k-$140k+. ITIL is also more policy than tech, sounds right up your ally. It's the "worldwide" standard now, ITIL policy REQUIRES my team to exist at my workplace...we do the ITSM "root cause analysis" part. Well, I'm supposed to but normally the network runs so smooth I might do 15 minutes of actual work a day, mostly I just watch primewire / neflix all night. I don't have any ITIL certs, but they ARE pretty useful but thei

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