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Those Who Can, Do Expand / Collapse
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Posted Tuesday, December 18, 2012 11:53 PM


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Post #1398202
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 1:27 AM
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Isn't certification to officially show management and your boss how much you know?
I have found that the people most impressed by certification are recruiters, HR and management in general. Certification is something you use to get a job or as justification for a payrise.
Post #1398225
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 2:24 AM
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Hi

I have to agree with Steve - certification is not any indication of real world ability - I really wish it was but sadly it simply isn’t true.
It does show commitment to learning and developing yourself, the ability to focus on something - but it’s rare for the stuff you learn through certification to translate into hands on experience.

So often the theory doesn’t match the reality - and that’s where the experience needs to come in.

I’m an employer and have been a DBA (oracle and sql server) for over 15 years now - in that time I have met (on both techs) some really clever people with all the certifications you could want. But put them in front of a production system that isn’t working and they simply don’t know how to translate the knowledge that they have.

On the other hand, as I mentioned, I have been a dba for many years and have no certifications at all. I probably couldn’t pass the exams either as I was always useless in that kind of an environment.

As an employer, certifications become useful as a tool to check that our employees are growing in their knowledge and they provide us with tangible points for pay increases, etc - in this way they are invaluable to us. But that’s our own internal staff - not necessarily people we are looking to employ. They have to prove their knowledge to us through exams etc.

As a company owner, I know clients like to see certifications because they expect that to mean competence. Which means this also makes certification good for a company as it is a selling point. Though these days that only really works with oracle because these same people don’t always understand the difference between a SQL Server certification and an office certification and just assume they are easy to get.

There are undoubtedly benefits to certification - but as Steve says - experience is the key and you have to be able to demonstrate a whole lot more than just being able to pass an exam.

Sue
Post #1398246
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 3:31 AM
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It's a tough one to call really, we've all had to work with someone at some stage who had passed the exam but didn't really know their stuff. At the same time you need certifications sometimes to get your cv past HR teams, the interview if it is done well should tell you about someones experience and ability. With SQL Server can it really hurt if someone has picked up a qualification or two over the years? Does it not show that they are keen to keep learning the product?
Post #1398266
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 5:31 AM
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What about the pace of change in the certification world? What if you have earned a certification on say SQL 2005? When should you renew that, if at all? With every new release? 2 releases into the future? I know that there are technology changes between versions, but is one certification and real-world experience enough to demonstrate competency?

A lot of questions...I know. Answer whichever you feel like!

Thanks...Chris
Post #1398332
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 6:00 AM
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I've worked with people who got their certifications solely from a book. As Sue pointed out they could not deal with a real problem when confronted. As in, they couldn't get wet if they fell out of a boat. Many of these same people complained when SQL exams began to rely more heavily on simulations. The couldn't handle it because the only knew theory.

My SQL certifications are expired. I plan to pursue more. Why? For one thing my boss values it. But having been an Oracle DBA he knows the difference between a certification and the ability to function during crunch time...and so do I. In my eyes, and in his too, it is more about the discipline and dedication required to get through it. I think it speaks to character as much as knowledge.


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Post #1398343
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 7:10 AM
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Over the 15 years I have worked in IT, I have not had an employer that values certification as anything more than a tool to get your foot in the door. When I got an MCSE+I in Windows NT 4, my employer barely acknowledged the accomplishment. When I tried to use that for the next job, the interviewers were more interested in my job experience. Since then, I have taken the classes for the new OS's or SQL Server versions, but not followed through with the certification process because out of all the IT people I have met, I only know one that was actually required to have certifications in the systems they worked with, so I don't see the value in putting the time and money into the testing process. My current employer encourages us to go through the certification process, but there is no reward for putting forth the time and effort to improve yourself for the company's benefit. If you are just out of high school and are looking for a quick way into an IT position, you can enroll in a course at the local technical college or business school, and get the certifications to get your start, because you will need the job experience to move up.
Post #1398387
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 7:23 AM


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I have said this before many times on this forum and it bears repeating once again. As long as "braindumps" are available to help memorize and pass these tests, then they are meaningless IMHO. People that already have the certifications and employees of Microsoft will obviously push them because they have a vested interest in doing so.

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ..."
Post #1398402
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 7:38 AM


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Sean Redmond (12/19/2012)
I have found that the people most impressed by certification are recruiters, HR and management in general.


Sean,

Yes, those people usually are impressed by that. However, those are the very people that know very little, if anything, about the actual skillls needed to be an effective DBA on a daily basis. Most of the time they are just reading stuff off a Word document looking for certain "buzz" words.


"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ..."
Post #1398412
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2012 7:48 AM
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I got my opinion of certification when I once worked with a newly certified CCNA. We were work on a router when the CCNA guys says "wait while I hook up to the com port". We say you are already on the network just telnet to it. CCNA guys says "you can't telnet to a router".

LOL....

Mike
Post #1398419
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