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The Numbers Show: Being Certified in IT Really Makes a Difference

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The Numbers Show: Being Certified in IT Really Makes a Difference

February 22, 2016
By Peter Bernstein
Senior Editor

IT professionals know that their skills are in demand.  And, for those who hold certifications, lending credibility to their training and skills, there is also the benefit of higher wages.

In fact, the most recent salary survey of “IT Pros” by Certification Magazine shows that the average U.S. IT Pro salary increased from $100,120 in 2013 to $113,350 in 2015. And, just to show that this is a global phenomenon, the survey also revealed that the average annual salaries of non-U.S. IT Pros increased from $49,310 to $55,310.

The magazine’s comments on the findings should resonate with readers.  They note:

“If you have IT-certified skills, then there’s very little reason to find yourself plowing through job search sites, unless maybe you’re looking for a job that’s even better than what you have now. The boom in the Internet of Things, the urgent and ever-present need to secure and protect sensitive data, and exploding demand for IT infrastructure are just some of the pressing reasons why the world needs more certified professionals.” 

As rosy as the picture is for IT pros in general, those with cloud skills have a competitive edge. A recent article in CloudTech article highlighted the top five in-demand cloud skills for 2016, including:

  • Migration
  • Security
  • Database
  • Programming language
  • Linux

The CloudTech article is a good resource for knowing where you may wish to focus your career. It also provides information on how and where you can develop skills in these critical areas. In addition, it provides recommended places to get training and certification. 

The reason this should be of keen interest for frequenters of the Cloud Security Resource Community is twofold.  First, as the posting notes, a 2015 study from BT says that business leaders rate security as “the number one concern for cloud computing.”   Additionally, as the “bad guys” develop more sophisticated strategies, and as more organizations realize that the cloud provides an expanded surface for those “bad guys” to create havoc, the demand for certified cloud security professionals will only continue to grow.

The good news: if you have cloud security experience, and more importantly the credentials that validate your knowledge, your career and salary options are, to say the least, exciting. And, as the article notes, the place to grow and verify those skills is from our community sponsor (ISC)² and its Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) credential.  In fact, the article recommends that CCSP “should be your number one target.”  

CCSP is a collaborative effort between (ISC)² and the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) that provides training and certification in the critical areas of data security, platform and infrastructure security, compliance, and other areas impacting how data is stored, processed, and moved in the cloud.  

A great first step in getting acquainted with the value of the CCSP is to download the (ISC)² whitepaper, The Rise of the Cloud Security Professional. Realities of the connected and increasingly cloud-based world are that more and more “mission-critical” information is moving to the cloud. This means the cloud, despite the fact that in many ways it is more secure than legacy premises-based defenses, is going to be a bigger target of those with malicious intent. In short, becoming a certified expert is valuable now and can only become more so in the long term.       

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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