@IRJ said in Why IT certifications are worth more than you think...:
I have talked about this with people before, the less experience you have the harder it is to stick out and having competencies in multiple areas is important and gives you an advantage to getting into the interview.
Absolutely. But without certs you can stick out much sooner. The more you get certs, actually, the harder I feel it is to stick out. Because everyone has certs and that's about it. Certs are a tough way to stick out. University is impossible to stick out. Not that they are bad, they just aren't a sticking out kind of thing. Every junior tech with zero networking experience or knowledge has a Cisco cert, for example. Dime a dozen.
But take that time, teach yourself unique or special or advanced skills, use the money to get equipment or experience, volunteer... there are great ways to use the time and money that really, really make you stand out.
Again, talking mid career, not first jobs. Like 3-5 years in. In my personal example, I got my first jobs without certs at all. But I used certs to at least attempt the next leap. But by my sixth year in IT, they were useless to me. I wasn't at $150K, but I was to the point where experience and skills were all that hiring managers cared about. The people with the certs weren't getting considered over me because of their certs.
For me, certs might have helped me in a two year window from year three to year five of my IT career. Before that I had none at all, after that they weren't considered valuable because I wasn't entry level enough any longer.