Career Idea: Training, Certification, And Retention

(This column is posted at and Steve’s Tumblr)

In a recent discussion with some people on retaining and training workers, I noted a simple solution to getting people trained and getting them to stay.

“Why not support them in getting certifications?”

My logic is simple

  1. You need to train people.
  2. Training isn’t always fun.
  3. Certifications are seen as valuable to one’s career.
  4. Certifications often require training – and that’s probably more interesting than just some class.
  5. So a company that supports certifications gets people educated, and if those people aren’t big on training, they may like a certification better.
  6. People getting the certification feel valued (and trusted as certifications would make it easier to look for a job).
  7. People will feel confident because in case of a layoff or something they’re still more valuable. It’s insurance.

Imagine a workforce that knows it’s going to get valuable training and certifications? That they’ll have that extra information on their resume or in their job review? Even if a new job may be tempting, why leave a place that recognizes you and helps you improve?

(Besides, the longer you’re there the more loyal you may be.)

I had two companies support me in certifications, and it certainly affected my attitudes towards them – in a postiive way. Someone shelled out the money to get me certified, and both allowed me to get trained on their own time. It’s hard to turn that down, and I stuck with them both untilthe bitter end.

So consider that next time you’re trying to figure out how to get better employee retention, or get people trained, or even boost morale. Guaranteed certifications may be something to ty.

Though I’m still getting my acquaintances to try it out at least they’re listening . . . though maybe you’ll have more luck.

– Steve

ITIL Certification And You

Direction Sign

Well, I’m pleased to say I have my ITIL Certification – well, the foundation. Hold your applause while you go surf the web to find out what the hell I’m actually talking about.

Now as everyone knows, I’m big on certifications. They show skills, they force you to study, they look good on a resume because they show commitment and knowledge. I can say in my experience that having those extra letters after my name has been great for my career (and takes a lot of effort).

When I first started looking into the ITIL at my manager’s request, I wasn’t sure what it was. Later, I found it was extremely useful, very educational, and something I wish I’d know about earlier. I wanted to share my experiences because this might be something for you.

OK, look, stop surfing, I’m going to explain it.

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Convention Idea – Presentations on Certifications

The roundup of convention ideas is here.

So what certifications are the pro-fans at your con interested in?

People who want careers based around their interests and obsessions have many steps to follow – education, employment, portfolio building, etc.  Missing from this list in all too many cases are professional certifications, except, perhaps in the IT field (and even then they can get overlooked).  Even though certifications can make a difference in a job search (as I have seen firsthand), they do get forgotten all too easily.

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