Six Sigma certification is a verification of an individual's command of a well-regarded quality assurance method. Certifications for Six Sigma training are awarded in levels using a belt classification system similar to belt levels used in martial arts.
Six Sigma is a set of quality management techniques and tools developed in the 1980s and adopted by American corporations, including General Electric. Development of the Six Sigma system is credited to Bill Smith and Mikel Harry, two Motorola engineers, and the name was trademarked by Motorola in 1993.
There is no standard Six Sigma curriculum. Programs are offered by many colleges, online and on-campus, and are offered in-house by many corporations.
The name Six Sigma stems from a statistical measurement represented by the lowercase Greek symbol sigma (σ). On a bell curve measuring data and standard deviation, sigma represents one standard deviation from the mean of a set of data. So, six sigma refers to the data that falls with six standard deviations on either side of the mean of the dataset.
On the curve, any data points outside of six sigma represent products outside acceptable norms—these are generally called defects. The Six Sigma bell curve represent one million data points. Therefore, if your product falls within six sigma—or six standard deviations from the mean on either side—there is a likelihood that you only have 3.4 defects per million items produced.
In a manufacturing process, this is the ultimate level to strive for, ensuring error-free delivery of a product 99.99966% of the time. Six Sigma training, therefore, focuses on developing management processes that reliably lead to virtually defect-free results in manufacturing or in any business activity.
Six Sigma certifications are awarded belt levels relevant to the position in the employee's business within an organization. They are earned through practical experience, course-based training, and exams. The belt levels are:
Six Sigma helps employers in many ways. In addition to improving employee and process performance, businesses benefit from:
Employees benefit from Six Sigma training and application as much as businesses do. Many experience:
Lean Six Sigma is derived from a combination of Lean and Six Sigma principles. Lean focuses on removing waste of physical and personnel resources by identifying the causes of defects, overproduction, waiting, non-utilized talent, transportation waste, inventory waste, waste of motion, and extra processing.
Lean Six Sigma uses Six Sigma techniques to identify and eliminate wasted resource use that doesn't generate value for the end user while continually working to achieve a goal of 3.4 defects per million products.
No unifying standard or organization sets a standard for Six Sigma belt certification. Instead, each company, school, or certifying organization determines its own criteria.
In some organizations, certification may require completing an test or a series of exams. In others, an individual must complete several Six Sigma-based projects. In addition, certification services charge a fee.
Because Six Sigma training is not standardized, costs will vary based on who is conducting the training. For example, a company training employees in Six Sigma will likely not charge the employees but will incur the costs of employing people who can teach the subject, developing the curriculum, and losing the employee's time at their regular job.
You can take certification tests through various sources, such as Purdue University, The Council for Six Sigma Certification, or Project Management Academy. Project Management Academy charges $495 for its Beginner Yellow Belt certification, $2,295 for its Green Belt Training, and $3,595 for its Black Belt Training.
The Council for Six Sigma Certification offers free white belt certification and charges $99 for a yellow belt, $159 for a green belt, and $229 for a black belt (for primary certifications—level II certifications are more expensive).
Six Sigma certification signifies you have received a specific level of training and understand the concepts involved in a particular quality improvement method.
The time it takes to get a Six Sigma certification depends on many factors. If you're receiving the training through your employer, it may take one week or more. On the other hand, studying in your free time can take as long as you need to study and pass the exam.
Six Sigma certification costs vary by level from $99 to $3,595. The costs also depend on how much instruction you receive or whether you're only paying for the exam.
Six Sigma is a quality control certification that attempts to educate people on analyzing processes and outcomes to reduce waste and decrease defects. There are several levels of certifications, from a primary end user to a master Six Sigma user who acts as a senior quality control member.
Six Sigma benefits both employees and employers because using it can reduce waste and defects, thereby increasing a business's value to consumers and end-users. This can lead to high levels of customer satisfaction, more revenue, higher compensation, and better products.
Certification now follows a rolling model for applications and approvals. If you have questions after reviewing this website, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-833-8773.
The period of certification lasts for 5 years, retroactive to the first day of the month the application was approved and expiring on final day of the same month 5 years hence. ESA staff will communicate with you about your status beginning at least 60 days prior to expiration, and will additionally remind you to submit your CEU data on a regular basis.
If you currently hold a certification from pre-2021 and will expire the next June from now, you should recertify in the spring of the year your certification expires; if your certification expired in the previous June, you may still recertify or upgrade.
We allow 2 years’ grace periods to recertify or upgrade, but you will be required to pay a penalty fee if your certification has lapsed beyond that grace period. All recertifications at all levels (except Emeritus) cost $25 for ESA Members and $50 for non-members.
Starting in 2022, the penalty fee is the cost of recertification for each year of lapse, with the first 2 years waived if you recertify within 2 years. In other words:
0 yr lapsed: $25 for recertify
1 yr lapsed: $25 for recertify (1 yr of back recertification fees waived)
2 yr lapsed: $25 for recertify (2 yr of back recertification fees waived)
3 yr lapsed: $75 for recertify
4 yr lapsed: $100 for recertify
Candidates for certification must have completed at least a bachelor’s degree or a higher degree in ecology or a related science. Completed undergraduate or graduate coursework must include the following, totaling 42 semester credit hours. Full requirements include areas of coursework and should include some core topics.
Please use this table for a general overview of requirements; specifics for each category follow below. Following approval of the minimum CEU type requirements by the Board of Professional Certification, this table will list requirements to upgrade as well.
|Degree Requirement||Professional Experience (Years)|
|Ecologist in Training||Bachelor’s +||0|
|Cover Letter Detail: Career aspirations, highlights of research/work to date|
|Associate Ecologist||Bachelor’s +||1|
|Cover Letter Detail: Field work, data skills, understanding of the human dimension in ecological systems|
|Ecologist||Bachelor’s +||2 with master’s degree; 5 with bachelor’s|
|Cover Letter Detail: Independent studies, complex data analyses, journal publication, report writing, oral presentations, understanding of the human dimension in ecological systems|
|Senior Ecologist||Bachelor’s +||5 with doctoral degree; 10 with bachelor’s/master’s|
|Cover Letter Detail: Thorough knowledge of ecological theory and application, including the interdependence and impact of humans on ecosystem structure, function, and environmental change; written original contributions of original interpretation of ecological information; technical or organizational competence as evidenced by supervision of projects|
Certified Ecologist and Senior Ecologist certification holders who hold that status for at least 10 consecutive years and are no longer working full-time may upgrade to each level’s respective Emeritus/ta designation. Contact email@example.com to learn more.
Please note that beginning 2021, all newly certified ecologists are required to complete 44 continuing education units over 5 years to be eligible for recertification or upgrade. Currently certified ecologists will be permitted to recertify or upgrade per their original requirements up to 2025; beginning with 2026, all recertifications and upgrades will require having met the CEU requirements. The ESA Board of Professional Certification approved this framework in January 2021.
Certified ecologists should report their CEU as they are earned, or at least on an annual basis. You can see how to do so here.
Interpretive leeway will be given to participants to identify suitable professional development opportunities per the requirements. ESA is partnering with other scientific organizations and training bodies to recommend opportunities for CEU in addition to the content that ESA provides — see the directory. Participants are encouraged to share ideas with staff as well.
All ecologists certified by ESA shall conduct their activities in accordance with the ESA Code of Ethics and with the highest standards of professional conduct and personal honor.
You can review the full application requirements here.
Here are additional details about the requirements for each certification level.
This category is for graduating students who have met the education requirements for ESA certification but do not have the required professional experience for the current certification categories. The basic requirement is:
A holder of the Ecologist in Training designation is encouraged to use the full term, “Ecologist in Training,” on business cards or in official signatures, but may use the initialism “EiT” if space limits require.
This category is for ecologists in the early stages of their career. Course requirements may be met with post-baccalaureate courses from an accredited college or university, but professional experience may not be counted until all coursework requirements for certification are met. The basic requirements are:
A holder of the Association Ecologist designation is encouraged to use the full term, “Certified Associate Ecologist,” on business cards or in official signatures, but may use the initialism “CAE” if space limits require.
This category is for established professional ecologists.
A holder of the Ecologist designation is encouraged to use the full term, “Certified Ecologist,” on business cards or in official signatures, but may use the initialism “CE” if space limits require.
This category is for previously Certified Ecologists who are no longer working full-time. The requirements are:
If the Certified Ecologist Emeritus/ta desires to depict certification on any official document, they are encouraged to use the term “Certified Ecologist Emeritus/ta.” This is meant as an honorary lifetime recognition and does not imply continued professional status. The initialism “CEE” is acceptable if space limits require.
This category is for professional leaders in ecology who have established a track record of excellent contributions to the field in applied and analytical environments.
A holder of the Senior Ecologist designation is encouraged to use the full term, “Certified Senior Ecologist,” on business cards or in official signatures, but may use the initialism “CSE” if space limits require.
Recertification applications at the senior ecologist level require only a cover letter and up-to-date CV if the applicant is, at the time of application, currently certified as a Senior Ecologist by ESA and a member of the Society in good standing.
This category is for previously certified Senior Ecologists who are no longer working full-time. The requirements are:
If the Senior Ecologist Emeritus/ta desires to depict certification on any official document, they are encouraged to use the term “Senior Ecologist Emeritus/ta.” This is meant as an honorary lifetime recognition and does not imply continued professional status. The initialism “SEE” is acceptable if space limits require.
While database platforms have come and gone through the decades, database technology is still critical for multiple applications and computing tasks. IT professionals often seek database certifications to demonstrate their knowledge and expertise as they navigate their career paths and pursue professional growth.
While database certifications may not be as bleeding edge as Google cloud certifications, cybersecurity certifications, storage certifications or digital forensics certifications, database professionals at all levels possess in-demand career skills — and a plethora of database-related jobs are waiting to be filled.
We’ll look at some of the most in-demand certifications for database administrators, database developers and anyone else who works with databases.
To get a better grasp of available database certifications, it’s helpful to group these certs around job responsibilities. This reflects the maturity of database technology and its integration into most aspects of commercial, scientific and academic computing. As you read about the various database certification programs, keep these job roles in mind:
These database job roles highlight two critical issues to consider if you want to be a database professional:
Did you know? NoSQL databases — called “not only SQL” or “non-relational” databases — are increasingly used in big data applications associated with some of the best big data certifications for data scientists, data mining and warehousing, and business intelligence.
Here are details on our five best database certification picks for 2022.
IBM is one of the leaders in the worldwide database market by any objective measure. The company’s database portfolio includes industry-standard DB2, as well as the following:
IBM also has a long-standing and well-populated IT certification program that has been around for more than 30 years and encompasses hundreds of individual credentials.
After redesigning its certification programs and categories, IBM now has a primary data-centric certification category called IBM Data and AI. It includes a range of database credentials:
IBM’s is a big and complex certification space, but one where particular platform allegiances are likely to guide readers toward the handful of items most relevant to their interests and needs.
Database professionals who support DB2 (or aspire to) on IBM’s z/OS should check out the IBM Associate Certified DBA — Db2 12 certification. It’s an entry-level test that addresses routine planning, working with SQL and XML, security, operations, data concurrency, application design, and concepts around database objects.
This certification requires candidates to pass one exam. Pre-exam training and familiarity with concepts, or hands-on experience, are recommended but not required.
IBM Certified Database Administrator — Db2 12 (z/OS)
Prerequisites and required courses
None required; recommended courses are available.
Number of exams
One: C1000-122: Db2 12 for z/OS DBA Fundamentals (63 questions, 90 minutes)
Cost per exam
$200 (or local currency equivalent) per exam. Sign up for exams at Pearson VUE.
The certification page includes self-study materials, including a study guide and a learning path.
Did you know? IBM’s certification offerings are among the best system administrator certifications IT professionals can achieve.
Microsoft Azure offers a broad range of tools and add-ons for business intelligence. Azure is a cloud computing platform for application management and Microsoft-managed data centers. Microsoft certifications include various Azure offerings based on job role and experience level.
Microsoft’s certification program is role-centric, centered on the skills you need to succeed in specific technology jobs. Because Azure has such a broad scope, Azure certifications span multiple job roles. However, specific certifications exist for the following positions:
There are also certifications for learners at different experience levels.
For those looking to take their Azure knowledge to the next level, the Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals certification is the perfect place to start. This certification is for beginner database administrators interested in using Azure and mastering data in the cloud. It offers foundational knowledge of core concepts while reinforcing concepts for later use in other Azure role-based certifications, such as those listed below:
Prerequisites and required courses
This certification does not have any prerequisites. However, for absolute beginners, Microsoft offers an Azure Fundamentals certification.
Number of exams
One exam, DP-900, which is administered via Pearson VUE or Certiport.
Cost per exam
The test costs $99 in the United States, though the cost changes based on where it is proctored.
Microsoft offers one of the world’s largest and best-known IT certification programs, so the test is well supported with books, study guides, study groups, practice questions and other materials. Microsoft also offers a free online learning path.
Oracle runs its certifications under the auspices of Oracle University. The Oracle Database Certifications page lists separate tracks depending on job role and product. MySQL is perhaps the leading open-source relational database management system (RDBMS). Since acquiring Sun Microsystems in 2010 (which had previously acquired MySQL AB), Oracle has rolled out a paid version of MySQL and developed certifications to support the product.
If you’re interested in pursuing an Oracle MySQL certification, you can choose between MySQL Database Administration and MySQL Developer.
The Oracle Certified Professional, MySQL 5.7 Database Administrator (OCP) credential recognizes professionals who can accomplish the following tasks:
The certification requires candidates to pass a single test (the same test can be taken to upgrade a prior certification). Oracle recommends training and on-the-job experience before taking the exam.
Did you know? According to Oracle, approximately 1.8 million Oracle Certified professionals globally hold certifications to advance their networking careers and professions to validate their IT expertise.
For individuals interested in working in the Oracle environment who have the necessary experience to become a database administrator, Oracle’s Database SQL Certified Associate Certification is another top Oracle certification and an excellent starting point. This test encompasses an understanding of fundamental SQL concepts that individuals must grasp for database projects.
By earning the certification, individuals demonstrate that they have a range of knowledge in core SQL concepts:
This certification also requires candidates to pass a single exam. While Oracle does not specify any prerequisites, the company does state candidates should have familiarity working with the command line.
SAP SE has an extensive portfolio of business applications and analytics software, including cloud infrastructure, applications and storage. The SAP HANA platform’s foundation is an enterprise-grade relational database management system that can be run as an appliance on-premises or in the cloud. The cloud platform lets customers build and run applications and services based on SAP HANA.
SAP offers a comprehensive certification program built to support its various platforms and products. We’re featuring the SAP Certified Technology Associate — SAP HANA cert because it aligns closely with other certifications we’ve highlighted and is in high demand among employers, according to job board surveys.
This certification ensures database professionals can install, manage, monitor, migrate and troubleshoot SAP HANA systems. It covers the following skills:
SAP recommends that certification candidates get hands-on practice through formal training or on-the-job experience before attempting this exam. The SAP Learning Hub is a subscription service that gives certification candidates access to a library of learning materials, including e-learning courses and course handbooks.
The annual subscription rate for individual users on the Professional certification track is $2,760. This online training program is designed for those who run, support, or implement SAP software solutions. Though this may seem like a steep price for online training, you will likely be able to pass any SAP certification exams you put your mind to by leveraging all the learning resources available to SAP Learning Hub Professional subscribers.
Typically, SAP certifications achieved on one of the two most accurate SAP solutions are considered current and valid. SAP contacts professionals whose certifications are nearing end-of-life status and provides information on maintaining their credentials.
SAP Certified Technology Associate — SAP HANA 2.0 SPS05
Prerequisites and required courses
Recommended: Hands-on experience and the following courses:
Number of exams
One exam: SAP Certified Technology Associate — SAP HANA 2.0 SPS05, test code C_HANATEC_17 (80 questions, 180 minutes)
Cost per exam
The certification web page includes a link to trial questions. SAP HANA trade books and certification guides are available on Amazon. The SAP Help Center offers product documentation and a training and certification FAQs page. The SAP Learning Hub (available on a subscription basis) provides access to online learning content.
Tip: To broaden your skill set, consider pursuing the best sales certifications to better sell and implement various IT solutions, including databases.
Additional database certification programs can further the careers of IT professionals who work with database management systems.
While most colleges with computer science programs offer database tracks at the undergraduate, master and Ph.D. levels, well-known vendor-neutral database certifications exist, including the following:
These are some additional certifications:
These credentials represent opportunities for database professionals to expand their skill sets — and salaries. However, such niches in the database certification arena are generally only worth pursuing if you already work with these platforms or plan to work for an organization that uses them.
Key takeaway: Pursuing additional database certifications can be helpful for professional development if you already work with these platforms or plan to work with them in the future.
Before pursuing certifications, consider their popularity with employers to gain a helpful perspective on current database certification demand. Here’s a job board snapshot to provide you an idea of what’s trending.
IBM Certified Database Administrator — DB2
Azure Data Fundamentals
Oracle Certified Professional, MySQL Database Administrator
Oracle Database SQL Certified Associate Certification
If the sheer number of available database-related positions isn’t enough motivation to pursue a certification, consider average salaries for database administrators. SimplyHired reports $91,949 as the national average in the U.S., ranging from $64,171 to over $131,753. Glassdoor’s reported average is somewhat lower at $84,161, with a top rung for experienced senior DBAs right around $134,000.
Choosing the best IT certifications to enhance your skills and boost your career can be overwhelming, especially as many available certifications are for proprietary technologies. While picking a database certification can feel like locking yourself into a single technology family, it is worth remembering that many database skills are transferable. Additionally, pursuing any certification shows your willingness to learn and demonstrates competence to current and future employers.
Ultimately, choosing which certification to pursue depends on the technologies you use at work or would like to use at a future employer.
Jeremy Bender contributed to the reporting and writing in this article.
The University of North Georgia offers a certificate in Tier I Educational Leadership Certification Program-School Leadership and Administration. The program is designed for educators who have a master's degree and are preparing for entry-level leadership positions in public schools.
Applicants certified in Georgia should verify with their employer or the GaPSC whether the advanced degree leads to a certificate upgrade or pay increase. The GaPSC provides the Certificate Upgrade Advisor to assist with this process. Out-of-state applicants should also verify with their employer or certification body to verify certificate upgrades.
If program capacity is met prior to established admission deadlines, we will stop accepting applications for admission and cancel remaining incomplete applicants. Completing your application earlier is better.
Submit the online application for Graduate Admissions.
Please allow three business days after submitting your application for processing. You will receive an email from firstname.lastname@example.org after your application has been reviewed for accuracy and updated with submitted documents. Please do not check your application status prior to receiving an email from this office as your online application checklist will not accurately reflect the required items for your program of interest.
Submit one set of official transcripts from each institution attended for all course work, undergraduate and graduate level.
Board of Regents’ policy requires all applicants accepted for admission or readmission to UNG seeking in-state for tuition classification provide validation of residency and lawful presence in both the state of Georgia and the United States.
A candidate whose application is denied has the right to appeal the decision. A written letter of appeal must include strong evidence to support the basis for your appeal. The appeal should consist of information beyond what was previously submitted in your admissions file and detail your ability to be successful in graduate studies.
Email your letter of appeal as a pdf attachment to email@example.com.
This program requires current teacher certification. The University of North Georgia is unable to offer a path to enrollment for foreign nationals without current teacher certification in the United States.
For questions about the program, contact:
For questions about the application process, contact:
The Master of Science degree in Counseling at UNG was developed to meet the state and national regulatory criteria to be eligible to apply for licensure and certification as professional counselors.
This 12-credit graduate certificate in Public Administration and Leadership is designed for agency managers seeking to expand their leadership skills, agency line staff who are preparing to move into management roles, those with existing master degrees (e.g. master of criminal justice, master of social work) who wish to add on a management oriented credential, or prospective MPA students who are interested in an intermediate credential. Areas of skill development include public and non-profit leadership, personnel management, public budgeting and financial management, and data management. Because courses for the graduate certificate program are aligned with the master’s program curriculum, this program serves as both a standalone certificate and can serve as a pathway into the master’s program. Upon successful completion of the graduate certificate in Public Administration and Leadership, certificate holders who received a GPA of 3.5 and above may apply to waive the GRE requirement when applying to the Master’s.
|Course #||Course Title||Cr.|
|MPAD.5010||Foundations of Public Administration||3|
|MPAD.5020||Public/Nonprofit Budgeting and Financial Management||3|
|Choose one of the following|
|Course #||Course Title||Cr.|
|MPAD.5030||Public and Non-profit Management and Leadership||3|
|CRIM.5210||Managing Justice Organizations||3|
|SOCI.5020||Human Services Management||3|
|Choose one from the following|
|Course #||Course Title||Cr.|
|CRIM.5900||Descriptive and Inferential Statistics||3|
Total number of courses required for the certificate: 4
Total number of credits required for the degree: 12
In a Windows operating system, an Administrator account is an account that allows a user to make changes that require administrative permissions. An Administrator has more rights on a Windows OS as compared to the users with a local account. For example, the users with a local or standard account can access files and folders on their own user space, make system changes that do not require administrative permissions, install and uninstall programs, etc. On the other hand, an Administrator can change security settings, install and uninstall software, add and remove users, make changes to other user accounts, etc. In short, to perform the tasks that require administrative permissions, you should be logged in as an Administrator. In this tutorial, we will see how to log in as an Administrator in Windows 11/10.
Every Windows computer has a Local Administrator account that is created at the time of Windows installation. As described above, the Administrator has full access to the Windows device as compared to other standard users. The Administrator can also create new and delete the existing users and change the user account permissions. You can log in as an Administrator in Windows 11/10 by:
Let’s see all these methods in detail.
If you are starting your PC then locate the Administrator account and use the password to login.
If you are currently not logged in as an administrator and want to change to an admin, open Start, click on the user icon, select Sign out and then log into the Admin account by using its password.
The Windows OS has a built-in Administrator account. In Windows 11/10 and Windows Server 2016, the built-in Administrator account is disabled at the time of Windows installation and another local account is created which is the member of the Administrators group.
The built-in Administrator account is also called the Super Administrator account. If we compare the built-in Administrator account with the Local Administrator account, the built-in Administrator account has elevated privileges. This means when you perform the administrative tasks, you will not get the UAC prompt. Apart from that, if you want to do some serious troubleshooting on your Windows machine or if you want to recover your main account or another user account, you can use the built-in Administrator account.
Because the built-in Administrator account does not show the UAC prompt, any application can have full control over your system. Therefore, running this account on a regular basis can be risky. You should enable the built-in Administrator account only if you have to do some troubleshooting or recover other user accounts. After performing your task, you should disable it.
As explained above, every Windows OS has a Local Administrator account which is created at the time of Windows installation. Hence, you have to sign in to that Local Administrator account in order to enable the built-in Administrator account. After enabling the built-in Administrator account, you can login as an Administrator in Windows 11/10.
Every Windows 11/10 computer has a default Local Administrator account which is created at the time of Windows installation. Using that account, you can create another Local Administrator account for another user. To do so, open the Accounts page in your Windows 11/10 Settings and then click on the Family & other users option. Now, you have two options:
Let’s see how to create a Local Administrator account for a family member and other users.
You can use this option if you have another Microsoft account and you want to add that account as an Administrator to your Windows computer.
Now, you can login as an Administrator in Windows 11/10 using that account.
If you do not have another Microsoft account, you can still create a Local Administrator account. This time, you have to add an account in the Other users section on the Family & other users page. The steps are as follows:
Now, you can use this account to login as an Administrator in Windows 11/10.
Read: How to rename built-in Administrator Account in Windows.
If you already have created a local account on your Windows machine, you can change its type and use that account to login as an Administrator. The steps to change the local account to an Administrator account are as follows:
At the time of Windows installation, a Local Administrator account is created automatically. You can use that account to log onto your computer as an Administrator. Apart from that, you can also enable the hidden or built-in Administrator account or create an additional Local Administrator account.
We have explained all these methods above in this article.
To run Windows as an Administrator, you should have an Administrator account. There are different methods by which you can create an Administrator account. In addition to this, you can also enable the built-in Administrator account. But it is not recommended to use the built-in Administrator account on a regular basis due to security issues.
This is all about how to log in as an Administrator in Windows 11/10.
Read next: How to fix the disabled Administrator account on Windows 11/10.
Though networking of all kinds remains a white-hot IT concern and technology area, nothing is hotter than wireless technologies for everything from local area networking with 802.11ad to the widespread proliferation and adoption of fourth-generation (4G) wireless wide area networking technologies, such as LTE (with 5G now also starting to make its debut.)
The five certifications we cite in this article represent a small trial of the wireless IT certifications available in today’s marketplace. This year, we continue to feature two ever-popular Cisco certifications – the CCNA and CCNP Enterprise – along with the CWNA and CWSP credentials from the Certified Wireless Network Professional organization. Rounding out our top five list is the CompTIA Network+ credential.
Salaries for wireless-savvy professionals vary considerably. According to SimplyHired, entry-level wireless networking professionals can expect to make roughly $67,000, although there were highs reported at nearly $154,000. Of course, these are just average salaries. Indeed, other factors, such as job role and experience, greatly influence earning potential. When looking at salaries by job role rather than individual certification, you’ll find average salaries are much higher. For example, SimplyHired reports average earnings for network architects at more than $130,000, with earnings on the high end at almost $181,000.
In preparation for this article, we conducted a random survey of various IT job boards to see what certifications are being requested by prospective employers. In reviewing the results, it’s important to remember that factors, such as geography, the current climate of the employment market, and the complexity of the cert, influence outcomes.
You can expect to see lower numbers on more senior certifications, because, quite frankly, they’re more difficult to earn. Thus, fewer people possess them as compared to entry- and mid-level wireless certs.
Cisco offers some of the most widely known and recognizable certifications in the industry. It offers a wireless specialization for each Cisco networking credential at the Associate (CCNA), Professional (CCNP Enterprise) and Expert (CCIE Wireless) levels.
As of February 24, 2020, Cisco has rolled out a new CCNA exam. Currently, there are no prerequisites for the new exam, although ideal candidates should understand IP addressing, network fundamentals, and possess at least one year of direct experience implementing and administering Cisco solutions.
Candidates must also pass a single test (excluding any exams required for prerequisite certifications) to earn the CCNA credential. The new CCNA test is a consolidated test and replaces all current CCNA exams, regardless of concentration area. According to Cisco, the new CCNA test focuses on a broader range of fundamental skills, including automation and programmability, security fundamentals, IP services, IP connectivity, network access and network fundamentals. The new CCNA credential is valid for three years after which credential holders must recertify by passing an approved test or earning 30 Continuing Education Credits (CECs).
Professionals who earn the CCNA Wireless prior to February 23, 2020, will receive the new CCNA credential and a training badge.
200-301 CCNA (120 minutes).
|Certification Name||Cisco Certified Network Associate|
|Number of Exams|
|Exam delivered through Pearson VUE.|
|Self-Study Materials||The CCNA certification web page listed above provides a great list of self-study materials, learning network resources, training videos, practice questions, course syllabus and study groups, as well as learning partner content. Candidates can prepare for the test with the Implementing and Administering Cisco Solutions v1.0 course. The course is available online or in virtual or live classrooms. Plan on five days of classroom instruction and three days of self-study. The cost is $800.|
As with the CCNA Wireless certification, Cisco rolled out a new CCNP credential – the CCNP Enterprise – on February 24, 2020. Two exams are required to earn this CCNP Enterprise certification: a core test (focused on enterprise technologies) and an enterprise concentration exam. There are no prerequisites for the CCNP Enterprise credential, but successful candidates should have at least three to five years of experience implementing enterprise network solutions. The CCNP Enterprise is valid for three years. To recertify, certification holders must either pass a professional concentration test plus earn 40 CECs, or earn 80 CECs.
If you’ve had or have been working toward the CCNP Wireless credential, your hard work is not in vain. You’ll receive credit toward the new CCNP Enterprise credential for all completed work. Cisco’s CCNP Wireless Migration Tool is an easy-to-use tool that shows you exactly how your current work translates to the new program. For example, if you passed the CCNP Wireless Design test prior to February 24, 2020, you’ll receive the Cisco Certified Specialist – Enterprise Wireless Design credential. To earn the CCNP Enterprise certification, you would need to pass the CCNP Enterprise Core exam.
|Certification Name||Cisco Certified Network Professional Enterprise (CCNP Enterprise)|
|Prerequisites & Required Courses||There are no formal prerequisites for the CCNP Enterprise. Candidates should have a three to five years of experience implementing enterprise network solutions.|
|Number of Exams||The core test is 350-401 ENCOR (Implementing Cisco Enterprise Network Core Technologies).
In addition to the core test above, choose one of the following concentration exams:
300-410 ENARSI (Implementing Cisco Enterprise Advanced Routing and Services)
300-415 ENSDWI (Implementing Cisco SD-WAN Solutions)
300-420 ENSLD (Designing Cisco Enterprise Networks)
300-425 ENWLSD (Designing Cisco Enterprise Wireless Networks)
300-430 ENWLSI (Implementing Cisco Enterprise Wireless Networks
300-435 ENAUTO (Implementing Automation for Cisco Enterprise Solutions)
Exams are 90 minutes in length. Exams listed above are in addition to examinations required for any prerequisites.
|Exam Details||Exams delivered through Pearson VUE.|
|Self-Study Materials||The CCNP Enterprise certification page contains additional information about the test and study resources.|
CompTIA is a well-recognized certification provider of vendor-neutral industry credentials. The CompTIA Network+ credential joins the IT Fundamentals+, A+ and Security + credentials as part of CompTIA’s four “core” credentials. The Network+ certification serves as a prerequisite to several other CompTIA credentials including Security+, Cybersecurity Analyst+ (CySA+) (formerly CSA+), Linux+ and PenTest+.
An intermediate-level credential, the Network+ certification targets professionals in junior-level roles, including network administrators, system or field engineers, help desk and support technicians, and network analysts. Network+ validates a candidate’s skill and technical expertise relating to network configuration, design and implementation, virtualization support, troubleshooting, security standards, network devices configuration and more.
A single test (N10-007) is required to earn the credential. Launched in in March 2018, the test digs into several domains, including new hardware technologies, cloud computing, technical service models, virtualization and security concepts.
The credential is valid for a period of three years after which candidates must recertify. There are several paths to recertification; candidates can view the current requirements on CompTIA’s renewal web page. Professionals who are on a timeline to recertify quickly should explore a CertMaster CE course that allows candidates with valid credentials to recertify in as little as four to six hours for a nominal fee of $189.
|Certification Name||CompTIA Network+|
|Prerequisites & Required Courses||CompTIA A+ (recommended)
Nine to twelve months of networking experience recommended
|Number of Exams||One exam, CompTIA Network+ (N10-007) (90 minutes in length and up to 90 questions)|
|Cost per Exam||$329|
|Self-Study Materials||CompTIA maintains a list of learning opportunities on its Network+ training web page. Here, you’ll find links to study guides, classroom training, e-learning opportunities, and with CompTIA’s adaptive learning tool – CertMaster. You can also find numerous self-study materials available through Amazon.|
The Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) credential from the Certified Wireless Network Professional (CWNP) organization has been around for more than a decade but still represents a terrific general-purpose IT certification for those who install, configure and maintain wireless networks in the workplace.
CWNP describes this credential as a foundational-level career certification for networkers, and it acts as a gateway to more senior credentials. These include the Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP), Certified Wireless Analysis Professional (CWAP) and the Certified Wireless Design Professional (CWDP).
The current test for the CWNA is CWNA-107, which is available at Pearson VUE testing centers. Topics covered include basic RF technologies; regulations and standards; protocols and devices; network implementation; network security; RF site survey; antenna concepts; 802.11 network architecture; wireless LAN hardware and software; along with network design, installation and management, troubleshooting, and site surveys.
The CWNA is good for three years, after which candidates must recertify. Recertification is straightforward: Candidates need only pass the current CWNA test or any CWNP professional exam, including CWAP, CWDP or CWSP. To stay current, a recertification test must be passed before your existing CWNA certification expires.
The CWNA is probably the most worthwhile and useful wireless networking credential for administrators, thanks to its vendor-agnostic approach to wireless technologies. Unless you’re firmly ensconced in some vendor’s wireless tool and technologies – most notably, Cisco’s, from the perspective of this article – the CWNA is the place to start.
<table”> Certification Name <td”>Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) Prerequisites/Required Courses None
Recommended: Certified Wireless Specialist (CWS) and Certified Wireless Technician (CWT)
Number of Exams One exam, CWNA-107 (60 multiple-choice questions, 90 minutes, passing score of 70 percent required; instructor candidates must earn 80 percent) Cost per test $200. test administered by Pearson VUE. URL www.cwnp.com/certifications/cwna Self-Study Materials CWNP offers numerous training opportunities, including exam objectives, books, white papers and more (list and links appear on the certification page), the official study guide ($74.99), CWNA Training ($2,495), and the CWNA Self-Paced Training Kit ($325).
Another part of CWNP’s certification program, the Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP) targets security professionals working with wireless LAN networks. The CWSP validates a candidate’s ability to assess network vulnerability, employ best practices, make recommendations to prevent security breaches and attacks, conduct WLAN security audits, monitor security compliance, design and architect network security, and implement Wireless Intrusion Prevention Systems (WISPS).
To earn the CWSP, candidates must first obtain the CWNA certification and then pass the CWSP exam. While not required, training is recommended. The CWSP serves as a steppingstone to the more advanced Certified Wireless Network Expert (CWNE) credential. The CWSP credential is valid for three years. To recertify, certification holders must possess a current CWNA and pass the then-current CWSP exam.
|Certification Name||Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP)|
|Prerequisites/Required Courses||Valid CWNA|
|Number of Exams||One exam, CWSP-206 (90 minutes, 60 questions)|
|Cost per Exam||$275|
|Self-Study Materials||CWNP offers numerous training opportunities, including exam objectives, books, white papers and more (list and links appear on the certification page). From the CWNP Store, you can purchase a study guide ($74.99), an e-learning bundle ($905), practice test ($125), self-paced training kit ($395) and more.|
While not a part of the leaderboard, the Certified Wireless Design Professional (CWDP) and the SANS GAWN certifications (the GIAC Assessing and Auditing Wireless Networks) are worthy credentials to add to your certification portfolio. In addition to CWNP’s Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) and Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP), we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention CWNP’s other wireless certifications: the Certified Wireless Design Professional (CWDP), Certified Wireless Analysis Professional (CWAP) and Certified Wireless Network Expert (CWNE). Together, these certifications provide CWNP with a powerful wireless certification portfolio.
Other vendor-neutral wireless certifications worthy of mention include the iNARTE Wireless Device Certification Professional (WCDP).
Several industry players also offer wireless certifications, including Alcatel-Lucent (now part of Nokia), Extreme Networks, HPE and others. For those wishing to specialize in vendor platforms (such as Alcatel-Lucent, Extreme Networks, etc.), vendor-sponsored programs are the ticket to recognition and specific jobs. IT professionals working with Cisco will (of course) want to take a closer look at the creme de la creme of the Cisco certification tier, the Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert Wireless (CCIE Wireless). As with the CCNA Wireless and CCNP Wireless, Cisco released a new CCIE credential – CCIE Enterprise Wireless – on February 24, 2020.
For those interested in specific areas of wireless technology – particularly security – numerous other options also present themselves, depending on the person seeking other credentials that bear on wireless networking, either broadly or narrowly.
A shrewd business professional looks for ways to move up (or over) to Improve their salary, benefits and job opportunities. One way to reach that goal is by getting a business certification.
It’s tricky to nail down what constitutes a “business certification.” Think about the sheer number of lines of business (LOBs) in U.S. companies, and that most LOBs can have multiple associated certifications. To narrow our focus, we looked at general business and management credentials, as well as customer resource management, supply chain, sales and purchasing certifications. Although most of the certifications we selected are vendor-agnostic – not tied to a specific system or application – we researched several credentials from SAP, SAS and similar companies that specialize in business applications.
These are the certifications we examined:
Whether you’re just starting out in a professional track or have been at it for a while, you should find one or more of the certifications described in this article of interest and value.
The following table lists the top business-related certifications based on the number of open positions on a single day that call for the certification specifically. This isn’t a scientific analysis in which every job description is examined (especially when the numbers reach into the hundreds or thousands); it’s just an overall glance at search numbers as of Dec. 23, 2020.
|Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)||528||988||1,516|
|Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP)||246||399||645|
|Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)||426||791||
|Project Management Professional (PMP)||11,910||20,485||32,395|
|SAP Certified Application Associate – Business Planning and Consolidation||340||728||1,068|
|Salesforce Certified Administrator||694||1,170||1,864|
|HubSpot Inbound Marketing||599||108||707|
|Oracle Certified Professional (OCP)||830||1,444||2,274|
The following sections provide details on the top business certifications according to job site searches, as well as other certifications from their various organizations.
The Project Management Institute (PMI) has been around since 1969, helping business workers develop careers in project management, mainly through professional development and certifications.
The Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) is ideal for up-and-coming project managers. You need to show proof of a high school diploma, associate degree or global equivalent. The single test has 150 questions, costs $225 for PMI members or $300 for nonmembers, and is available through Pearson VUE. By the time you take the exam, you need to have attained 1,500 hours of project experience or 23 hours of project management education. The certification is valid for five years, and you must retake the test to maintain the credential.
PMI has other certifications aimed at the business community, such as the Project Management Professional (PMP), PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA), Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP), Program Management Professional (PgMP) and PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP).
If you’re interested in analyzing business needs and coming up with solutions, take a look at the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA). The CBAP is an advanced certification aimed at managers and leaders with more than five years of business analysis experience. More precisely, you need at least 7,500 hours of business analysis experience over the last decade, and 900 of those hours must directly relate to four of the six BABOK Guide knowledge areas. On top of that, you need at least 35 hours of professional development credits (earned over the last four years), plus two references.
The CBAP test has 120 multiple-choice questions, based on scenarios and case studies, and is available through PSI. The test costs $325 for IIBA members or $450 for nonmembers, and a $125 application fee is required. To maintain the CBAP, credential holders must earn at least 60 continuing development units within three years of achieving certification.
The IIBA offers related credentials, such as the Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA), Certificate of Capability in Business Analysis (CCBA), Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA-AAC) and Certification in Business Data Analytics (IIBA-CBDA).
APICS is all about supply chain management. As part of its goal to develop qualified operators, supervisors and leaders, it offers the Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) and a few other certifications. The CSCP covers supply chain concepts and technology, plus strategies for end-to-end operations, from supplier to company to consumer.
To earn the CSCP, you need a bachelor’s degree or equivalent, at least one other approved certification, and at least three years of related business experience. You also need to pass an test that costs $695 to $965, depending on your APICS membership status.
The Project Management Professional (PMP) from PMI is among the most recognized and sought-after certifications for both business and IT. The requirements are stiff. Option one requires a high school diploma, associate degree or global equivalent; 7,500 hours of experience leading projects; and 35 hours of project management education. Option two is a four-year degree, 4,500 hours leading projects and 35 hours of project management education. [Read related article on our sister site Business News Daily: Best Project Management Certifications]
You must pass a 200-question test to earn the PMP, which is available through Pearson VUE. The test costs $405 for PMI members and $555 for nonmembers. You maintain the PMP certification by earning 60 professional development units (PDUs) every three years.
Are you SAP savvy? SAP, a European multinational software program, stands for “systems, applications and products.” The software is used by companies around the world to manage business operations and customer relationships across several lines of business, including human resources, marketing, sales, manufacturing and supply chain.
The SAP Certified Application Associate – CRM recognizes a consultant’s skills in understanding and using SAP CRM software, including how it integrates with other SAP solutions like NetWeaver. SAP recommends that candidates have a combination of experience and training before sitting for the certification exam; training courses are available if needed. The test has 80 questions and costs $571. You can take the test through the SAP Certification Hub.
If you’ve ever worked with or considered using a customer relationship management (CRM) platform, you’ve likely heard of Salesforce. From help desk and lead management to sales and customer service, Salesforce is an all-in-one CRM platform that scales with a business’s needs as it grows. The platform has become so popular since its launch in 1999 that it’s considered an industry leader and won our best pick for enterprise CRM usage.
If you’re looking to leverage the platform at an administrative level, Salesforce offers a certification program to increase your knowledge of the platform. The program requires you to take several classes and workshops before completing a proctored credential exam. The classes and test typically cost a few thousand dollars.
Salesforce suggests that anyone seeking this certification should already have a decent handle on the platform, since the certification seeks to build upon their understanding of existing features and functions. Once you complete this program, the company also offers the Advanced Administrator certification to further your knowledge of the platform.
HubSpot is a CRM platform that helps businesses handle their marketing, sales and help desk needs. While the platform covers various specialties, the HubSpot Inbound Marketing certification teaches how to use content creation, social media and other inbound marketing methods to your advantage.
This is a free certification course comprising seven lessons, complete with 34 videos and eight quizzes, that takes slightly over four hours in all.
Oracle is a leading cloud database software company that helps apply the nebulous digital concept to numerous business functions. More than 2.2 million people have earned their Oracle Certified Professional credentials, and our initial research found over 2,000 job openings for the designation.
With numerous certification paths spanning the platform’s cloud-based and on-premises software and hardware solutions, Oracle offers free learning courses in a wide range of specialties. Once you’re ready for an exam, you must purchase a voucher at prices ranging from $95 to $245. These vouchers are good for six months, giving you enough time to hone your skills with the Oracle platform before committing to a test.
The American Purchasing Society is the membership organization behind the Certified Purchasing Professional (CPP), Certified Professional Purchasing Manager (CPPM), Certified Green Purchasing Professional (CGPP), Certified Professional in Distribution and Warehousing (CPDW), and Certified Professional Purchasing Consultant (CPPC) programs.
If your career involves the creation, use, retrieval and disposal of business records, check out the Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM), Certified Records Analyst (CRA) and Certified Records Manager (CRM) programs.
On the global front, the Institute of Management Consultants offers the Certified Management Consultant (CMC) certification, and NASBITE’s Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) focuses on global business management and marketing, supply chain management, and trade finance.
Finally, the Business Relationship Management Institute has two certifications: the Business Relationship Management Professional (BRMP) and Certified Business Relationship Manager (CBRM).
Andrew Martins contributed to the writing and research in this article.
Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.
If you’re a project management professional with less than three years of experience, and you are looking to boost your resume and certify your skills and knowledge, the Certified Associate of Project Management (CAPM)® certification may benefit you.
Early-career professionals who are wondering if the CAPM is worth it should consider the certification’s key factors. This article overviews factors to consider regarding CAPM certification, including costs, salary and growth potential and career options.
The CAPM certification is a beginner-level credential administered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that validates an individual’s knowledge and competency in project management fundamentals. The certification serves entry-level professionals, project team members and project managers who are seeking to advance their knowledge and implement best practices in their day-to-day work.
Several components factor into the total CAPM certification cost. These expenses include test fees, training costs, study resources and renewal fees.
The CAPM test fee is mandatory, and test-takers must pay it directly to PMI. The fee breaks down as follows.
CAPM training and test preparation courses typically incur additional costs. Fees for training courses vary depending on the program. CAPM bootcamps typically start at around $200. In just three or four days, these programs provide the 23 hours of project management education required for CAPM certification.
A training course can cost between $300 and $500. There are several training options available for certification candidates with varying budgets.
PMI bases the current CAPM certification test on the sixth edition of the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK)® Guide. PMI members receive this guide with their memberships. Nonmembers must purchase the PMBOK if they want to use it to prepare for the exam. PMI bundles this edition of the PMBOK Guide with its Agile Practice Guide, which is available to purchase from PMI for $49.
Note that starting in 2023, the CAPM test will no longer be based on the PMBOK Guide.
For the current version of the CAPM exam, test-takers should review the sixth edition of the PMBOK. PMI also recommends those pursuing CAPM certification to prepare through courses and study groups in addition to self-study. Local PMI chapters often offer formal study courses, as do PMI-authorized training partners. Costs vary among providers.
CAPM candidates may take practice exams as well. The costs of these exams widely vary, and there are some free practice questions available online. PMI offers sample test questions and the CAPM handbook—both excellent tools for self-study—online for free.
The CAPM renewal fee is $60 for PMI members and $150 for nonmembers. CAPM-certified professionals who want to maintain their CAPM status must renew their certification every three years, during which they must complete 15 professional development units.
PMI periodically updates the renewal process for CAPM certification, so make sure to check PMI’s website to stay on top of the most current renewal requirements and costs.
PMI projects that the global economy will need 25 million new project management employees to meet demand by 2030: 12 million due to the field’s projected expansion, and 13 million due to worker retirements. This amounts to 2.3 million project management job openings per year until 2030, indicating strong, steady growth for the field.
Even early-career project management professionals earn relatively high salaries as well, according to PMI. In the U.S., project professionals with less than three years of experience earn a median annual salary of $78,279.
Below we list a few roles, spanning from entry-level to senior positions, that you may qualify for with a CAPM certification.
Median Annual Salary: $93,000
Job Description: Management analysts make recommendations to Improve organizations’ efficiency. These professionals, also called management consultants, analyze how an organization might increase its profits by reducing costs and increasing revenues and advise managers accordingly.
Management analysts should have a bachelor’s degree and several years of work experience. CAPM certification is not required for this role, but it can bolster your resume.
Average Annual Salary: More than $48,000
Job Description: Project coordinators assist project managers by organizing projects to ensure they’re completed on time and within budget. These professionals coordinate project management activities, resources and equipment. They also collaborate with clients to identify and define project objectives, requirements and scope.
Project coordinators analyze risks, monitor project plans and oversee work hours, schedules and spending. Project coordinators often organize and participate in stakeholder meetings.
Median Annual Salary: $94,500
Job description: Project managers provide critical leadership to help organizations complete projects. These professionals oversee ongoing projects to ensure teams meet deadlines, project requirements and client expectations. They submit deliverables, prepare status reports and streamline communications between teams, team members, stakeholders and clients. They help identify and resolve issues that arise during the project duration.
Average Annual Salary: More than $123,000
Job description: Project management directors strategically develop, direct and manage multiple projects within larger organizations. They establish methodologies and standards to set measurable quality and productivity targets. These professionals oversee finances, coordinate resources within the defined scope and monitor potential risks to ensure teams complete projects on time and within budget.
The CAPM certification is a respected designation that indicates a commitment to the field and certifiable knowledge and experience in project management. If you’re contemplating earning a CAPM certification, consider the following factors before taking the plunge.
A CAPM certification can help individuals with up to three years of experience in project management boost their resumes and help their job applications stand out.
The certification is a solid place to start if your professional goals include project management. It can serve as a stepping stone toward more advanced positions and certifications in the field, such as the Project Management Professional (PMP)® credential. In fact, CAPM certification fulfills the formal training PMP certification requirements.
Earning CAPM certification can increase your earning potential. Payscale reports that CAPM-certified professionals earn around $68,000 per year. Note that several factors can impact your earning potential, including your level of education, job title, location and professional experience.
CAPM certification assesses candidates against strict guidelines that demand competency in and knowledge of project management skills, methodologies, processes and best practices. This professional designation can help your resume stand out and provide you a competitive edge when applying for jobs. It signals to employers that you can successfully fulfill their roles, duties and responsibilities.
CAPM certification builds a strong foundation in project management fundamentals and can serve as a stepping stone toward the PMP certification. Before applying for the PMP exam, candidates must meet the following requirements.
Alternatively, you may: