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Five third party digital qualifications that add value to your CV

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9th Sep 2013
Trainer Acuity Training
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Nick Williams gives the community some quick tips to bolster the digital section of your CV.

It’s a testament to how big a part of our everyday work and personal life software programs have become, that studios and other digital organisations are offering qualifications. Ten years ago it was a novelty for a CV to contain software skills tailored to a specific profession, but now the digital job market has become so saturated that third party qualifications are a massive differentiating factor.

With this article we are not suggesting that in all areas these third party qualifications will begin to rival those gained through university study. Yes, for certain niche disciplines these qualifications are required; however for the most part they play a supporting role to experience and allow you to differentiate yourself from others.

Below we have listed five third party qualifications which will undoubtedly add value to any CV.

Adobe Certified Expert (ACE)

Adobe is a case study in how to manage the shift from paper-based communications to digital communications. It started life creating software which ensured that documents would print in the same way on all printers. It is now the industry leader in software for the creation of digital publications as well as print ones.

There are three channels for Adobe certification: print specialist, web specialist and video specialist. Each focuses on developing skills in the key tools for these roles. ACE certification is ideal for those interested in developing careers in creative professions such as graphic designers, web designers and video producers as it provides clear proof of expertise to potential employers. It can also provide a basis for further study, up to the point of becoming an Adobe trainer.

Windows Server Certifications

While the consumer-facing side of the internet relies on creative professionals for style and content, there is plenty of back-office work required to keep the systems going. Whereas internet servers were once almost uniquely Linux-based, Windows has made great inroads into the market, largely through the attractiveness of being able to integrate server functions with other Windows applications.

That being so, Windows Server Certifications are an attractive option for those interested in a career in IT support, particularly since servers are used for many purposes in addition to connecting to the Internet. For example, they are also needed for corporate intranets and data-storage facilities. Microsoft certifications come at various levels from Associate (suitable for entry-level positions), through to Expert (for those seeking further career development) to Master (for those seeking to reach the top of their profession).

Windows Database Certifications

Databases are the bedrock of modern industry. They are the repositories for the raw data which organisations use both as a basis for fulfilling their day-to-day tasks and as a resource from which information can be extracted and used to create further opportunities for the organisation. Because of this, those who can maintain the integrity of this data are highly sought after, as are those who can query it to extract the key business intelligence that companies need to survive, let alone thrive.

Microsoft has a variety of SQL Server certifications, which are graded from Associate through Expert to Master. The expert level has two distinct branches: Data Platform and Business Intelligence. The former focus on building and maintaining SQL servers while the latter focuses on reporting. 

Google Adwords certification

Love them or loathe them, Google is the indisputable leader of the search engine pack and shows every sign of maintaining and even extending its dominance. Google Adwords is the suite in which Pay-Per-Click adverts are created and managed and as you can expect; knowing your way around Adwords can save a company as much as you can make them. Two online tests are required to gain ‘certified’ status - beginner and advanced. Simply because of the money involved in Adwords, showing proficiency will make you a very attractive candidate.

Hootsuite University

As the Internet has developed, it has grown increasingly interactive, hence the popularity of social media sites. With so many social media sites (and corporate profiles) to manage, the smart user will already be utilising one of the many 'social suites' – where all your profiles can be managed and updated from one place. Hootsuite has long been the tool of choice for this task and is now actively educating people as to how to make the most of their social media presence. For anyone looking to move into digital marketing, this certification will look very attractive to recruiters.

Nick Williams is a marketing assistant at Acuity Training, who are a hands-on training company based in Guildford, UK. Acuity provides advanced & beginner AutoCAD courses as well as SharePoint training

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