Ever wonder how much that certification is worth? While it’s hard to put a dollar sign on certifications, CompTIA offers some insight in the results from a recent survey.

  • 65 percent of employers use IT certifications to differentiate between equally qualified candidates
  • 72 percent of employers use IT certifications as a requirement for certain job roles
  • 60 percent of organizations often use IT certifications to confirm a candidate’s subject matter knowledge or expertise
  • 66 percent of employers consider IT certifications to be very valuable — a dramatic increase from the 30 percent in 2011

Numbers like these make it hard to discount the validity of certifications. Here are the top IT certs you must consider to get ahead in your career:

5. CEH: Certified Ethical Hacker – $95,155

A lab intensive course schedule puts CEH first in our top ten list. The certification path immerses students into an interactive environment where they are shown how to scan, test, hack and secure their own systems. Other topics such as Intrusion Detection, Policy Creation, Social Engineering, DDoS Attacks, and Buffer Overflows

4. CCNP Routing and Switching – $97,038

CCNP Routing and Switching certification validates the ability to plan, implement, verify and troubleshoot local and wide-area enterprise networks and work collaboratively with specialists on advanced security, voice, wireless and video solutions

3. PMP: Project Management Professional – $109,405

PMP is starting to become that “secret sauce” on many resumes. Another report states that having a PMP certification on top of another certification such as a CCNA or Microsoft cert can earn an extra $20k per year. Even on it’s own, training for a PMP certification puts you well over the $100k mark

2. CISSP: Certified Information Systems Security Professional – $110,603

With your CISSP certification, you’ll be heavily prepped with System Security Architecture, Cryptography, Disaster Recovery, and more. Thousands of corporations are looking fill newly formed Information Security Officer
positions to be proactive against attacks

1. CISM: Certified Information Security Manager – $118,348

Information security management is the name of this game. Employers are searching for an improved alignment between the organization’s information security program and its long term goals.

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