Professional certificates help provide recognition for your specialised knowledge or skill set, which can be a significant benefit when it comes to landing certain clients or projects.
Here are five benefits to keep in mind if you’re considering whether or not to pursue professional certification.
When you have training that your competitors don’t, it sets you apart. Certifications can differentiate you from other professionals in your field, showing that you have demonstrated commitment to understanding and excelling in your profession.
This can give you an advantage, which is particularly important in today’s competitive market.
Professional certifications can also help give your independent business a solid foundation. The advanced training, information, and knowledge you gain from specialised coursework can provide you with up-to-date tools and technical strategies that will serve to guide and direct you in the execution of your projects, allowing you to manage all aspects of your work more effectively.
The time and effort invested in professional certifications often result in increased income. Most clients will understand the higher costs associated with specialised training and are willing to pay for consultants who have industry certifications.
For example, Project Management Professional (PMP) certification recipients report median salaries that are 26% higher than those not PMP certified.
By acquiring new and updated industry information or techniques, you can hone current work habits that may be causing inefficiencies or quality issues with your output while increasing your competencies.
This can help give skills and confidence to try something new, such as establishing the groundwork to implement a more sophisticated working environment for your consultancy.
There's an increasing number of companies, non-profits, and government organisations that, when working with independent consultants, want (or may even be required) to engage those who have specific certifications from recognised programs.
Certification demonstrates your commitment to superior professionalism, upholding industry standards and continued learning. These merits can help boost your professional credibility and prestige within your own network, with your current clients, and when pursuing new business opportunities or bidding on projects.
Certifications are often a worthwhile investment because of the many advantages they can provide throughout your career. As you move forward and as your business evolves, be sure to keep your certifications up-to-date so you can continue to realise these benefits.