As IT Certifications Devalue, Vendors Up the Ante

By Deborah Rothberg  |  Posted 2006-05-02 Email Print this article Print

New guru-level, steeply priced certification programs attempt to fill the void left by de-emphasized IT certifications.

A recent research report by Foote Partners, a New Canaan, Conn.-based management consultancy firm, found that noncertified IT skills have been growing in value at a rate nearly two times that of certified skills.

A new follow-up report looks at what happens next to vendors who rely on their certifications programs to gain mind share for their technologies and support sales of their products.

"Vendors created the certifications industry principally to sell their products," said David Foote, Foote Partners co-founder, CEO and chief research officer, in a statement.

"What fascinates me is that when we asked several vendors recently if they use their own certifications internally to qualify their own employees' technical skills, the answer was largely 'no'.

"It appears that they do not consider their own external certifications tough enough for the own people, and that may just be the issue with employers who are starting to place less emphasis on technical certifications, in favor of paying more for other qualities of IT professionals that are more critical to their business."

Yet, while qualities such as industry knowledge and customer experience appear to be taking the lead, certifications haven't been going down without a fight.

Instead, vendors have been banding together to create new, master-level certifications that are vendor-independent, technology-neutral in focus, and available to any person who can qualify.

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