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CompTIA to aid graduates gain IT certifications

CompTIA embarks on initiative to ease IT skills shortfall in the region

CompTIA to aid graduates gain IT certifications
Plunkett says a certification makes an individual more marketable.

Having set-up office in the UAE recently, CompTIA, a non-profit trade association advancing the global interests of IT professionals and companies, has revealed that it has embarked on an initiative aimed at helping university graduates to gain the much-needed IT certifications.

The initiative according to CompTIA, is part of a wider strategy aimed at alleviating the IT skills deficit in the Middle East region, while at the same time helping university graduates to get certifications that can help them gain employment.

CompTIA states that the university graduate population is a prime candidate to fill IT job openings and thus ideal candidates for the IT industry certification exams it offers.

Mark Plunkett, regional director, CompTIA Europe, Middle East and Emerging Markets, said the association wants to raise awareness of the benefits of a career in the IT industry and opportunities that are available today and in the future.

Plunkett said through its training programmes and strategies, it offers individuals methodologies that they can use to secure a job in the IT sector. "Individual IT professionals, employers, government organisations, educational institutions and others will find a rich trove of resources on our website," he said. "We recently expanded the careers section to help anyone interested in an IT job to plan their career goals and chart a path on how to get there."

Plunkett said in the Middle East like in other regions of the world, top IT priorities include security, data storage, refreshing aging equipment, improving network infrastructure, disaster recovery and business continuity. He said IT professionals skilled in these areas are in high demand and short supply.

"Beyond core IT, business process automation, mobility, collaboration, virtualisation and a host of other emerging technologies will be future priorities for many businesses. Each of these areas will require IT staff and end-users to have sufficient knowledge bases and skill sets to maximise the return on technology investment," he said.

He pointed out that for workers new to the employment market without a great deal of past experience, the combination of an academic degree and an industry-recognised certification puts them in a stronger position when looking for a job. "A certification makes an individual more marketable. Unless the employer is familiar with the school the job candidate attended or the organisations that candidate may have previously worked for, he or she has no independent means of knowing how rigorous the program or experience is," he added.

Plunkett said businesses are looking for, and are willing to pay for technology workers with skill sets that can be used to make the company more competitive and more productive. "Individuals who are securing jobs in today's tech workplace are equipped with greater versatility and a broader skill set than was required in the past," he noted. He explained that five years ago it was far easier to find a good-paying IT job. "Now people who want to be in IT need an edge, a means of proving they can do the tasks assigned," he said

Plunkett said the IT professional certifications that CompTIA has lined up for the Middle East region are a step toward that proof.

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