Looking for a career in Information Technology? Or looking to add IT certifications to your resume to further your career in the field? Congratulations on a good decision! IT is the fastest growing industry in the world that is influencing every other line of work from healthcare to security, public sectors to private. Being an IT professional also comes with unbeatable job security.
Business Insider listed 26 careers with the highest job security out of which two were IT positions. This is true especially for cybersecurity where employers are struggling to fill thousands of positions. You will be valued, coveted and hard to be replaced. The average national salary for computer hardware technicians is $72,515. Some certifications command higher salaries. Certification Magazine’s Annual Salary Survey 2016 reported an average salary of $96,920 for CompTIA Server. But it is not easy to get a foot in.
To enter the IT field, becoming a computer technician is the first step. There are a host of computer hardware certifications that can build your skills in that direction. These certifications help build your knowledge and competency in maintaining computers, mobile phones, printers and much more. However, hardware cannot operate without software or vice versa. The curriculum for any hardware certification includes software to address installation, maintenance, troubleshooting, and other activities.
Below is a list of the five computer hardware certifications to give you the edge.
5 Best Computer Hardware Certifications
● CompTIA A+: This is by far one of the best-known of all hardware credentials. If you are interested in mastering everything about all kinds of computers, operating systems, and mobile devices, the A+ is for you. The certification covers PC hardware and software, networking and security. Over 1 million IT professionals carry the A+ credential. Many job postings require it too. But it needs to be renewed every three years to stay updated with certification currency.
Jobs Prospects: Technical support specialist, field service technician, IT support technician, IT support administrator or IT support specialist.
Prerequisites: 9-12 months of experience in IT.
● Apple Certified Macintosh Technician (ACMT): With the number of Apple products, and Macintosh computers are strewn in homes and businesses worldwide, it is no surprise to see the huge demand for ACMT technicians. Curriculum fundamentals include customer service skills, ESD and safety, troubleshooting, product knowledge, and deductive reasoning. ACMT is a permanent credential that does not require annual recertification.
Job Prospects: ACMT certified technicians are employed by Apple-authorized service facilities to perform service and repairs.
Prerequisites: AppleCare Technician Training which requires you to take two exams:
1. Apple Service Fundamentals exam (SVC-17A)
2. ACMT 2017 Mac Service Certification exam (MAC-17A)
● BICSI Technician: This association offers training, certification, and education in the Information and Communications Industry (ICT) in the areas of voice, data, audio, video, project management, and electronic safety and security. BICSI offers several certifications for ICT professionals. Technicians must have knowledge in hardware, networking devices, and communications equipment and cable connections. Credentials are valid for three years.
Prerequisites: Candidates must pass an exam with two parts: hands-on practical and a written exam. They must also have at least three years experience in the ICT industry.
● Cisco Certified Technician Routing and Switching (CCT): CCT is an entry-level credential to gain knowledge and ability to support and maintain Cisco networking devices at a customer site. It is one of the best computer hardware certifications and an essential foundation to support Cisco devices and systems.
Prerequisites: You need to pass just one exam on Cisco equipment and hardware, and have working knowledge on Cisco interface, commands and remote servicing of Cisco products.
● CompTIA Server+: This is a server-related certification from CompTIA that goes beyond basic PC hardware, software, and networking topics. The certification is more challenging, covering advanced storage systems, IT environments, disaster recovery, and business continuity. It is ideal for working in server rooms, data centers or for stepping into vendor-specific server technician training programs in IT firms such as HP, Dell, IBM, and other PC and server makers. It does not need renewal or continuing education requirements.
Prerequisites: CompTIA A+ certification and a minimum of 18-24 months of IT experience.
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