Online Microsoft Certification Programs

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that computer software engineers are among the highest-growth occupations during the 2006-2016 decade. Employment of software engineers is predicted to grow by an astonishing 38 percent during that time. As a result, IT professionals, computer programmers, and engineers can work in a variety of industries enjoy some of the best career offers.

Microsoft Certification Can Increase Your Career Potential

Most employers require at least a four-year degree of their computer engineering candidates, but some require vendor certification from major software companies like Microsoft. Earning a Microsoft certification can help you in your career in a number of ways. Firstly, it complements your college degree, showing potential employers that you have the necessary career training to perform your job well.

Secondly, certification can also help you advance in your current career, moving on to a job that might offer different responsibilities, management opportunities, or higher salary potential. Microsoft certification can help you become an expert in your field.

Microsoft Career Training

A variety of Microsoft certifications are available, and are awarded directly by the company through a rigorous series of examinations, but online training and exam prep courses are available.

Some of the most popular Microsft certifications are:

  • Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS)
  • Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA)
  • Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE)
  • Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA)

Certification Highly Rated Among IT Professionals

Veterans of Microsoft certification programs say that while training and exams are no easy matter, the benefits definitely compensate students for their effort. A survey of over 2,000 IT professionals by the Web firm Tech Republic found that Microsoft certified workers listed "greater respect" as one of the largest benefits from certification. "Increased work responsibilities" and "more opportunity for professional advancement" were equally rated benefits.

Earning multiple certifications is a way to increase your career potential even more, requiring more dedication and a longer time commitment. Some training programs are available online, however, and most training companies offer training for multiple certifications. You can tailor your own development schedule, and pursue the best training for you.

Career Training Can Lead to Great Job Prospects

Earnings typically vary by industry and occupation. The BLS reports that computer software engineers working with applications earned an annual median salary of $83,130 in 2007. Computer software engineers working with software earned $89,070.

Some of the top industries in 2007 included:

  • Chemical manufacturing
  • Scientific research
  • Motion picture industry
  • Electronics
  • Computer manufacturing
  • Software publishing
  • Computer systems design
  • Data processing

For computer software engineers, Virginia, California, New Jersey, and Massachusetts topped the list as the highest paying states in 2007.

Although no professional certification can guarantee a specific salary, Microsoft certification can help you to distinguish yourself from other job applicants, and MCTE-certified professionals should be able to command higher salaries.