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Certification Watch (Vol. 20, No. 46)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, Acclaim is making digital badging better with employment data, the Certification Magazine Salary Survey is about to end, and more.

Microsoft Learning Now Offers Better Digital Badges


Green check markDigital badges are still relatively new. The various credentialing programs that use them are still figuring out what they can do, and how they can be used. The badging trend has been in place for a while, however, and some certification sponsors are starting to get ahead of the learning curve. Like many other programs, Microsoft Learning, the certification and training arm of the Redmond, Wash.-based software titan, has partnered with badging facilitator Acclaim to make the switch from ink-and-paper credentials to digital badges. Now Microsoft is taking advantage of a cool new innovation from Acclaim. Effective immediately, you can get real-time updates via your digital badge about job openings that match up with your Microsoft certification. The data is continually refreshed, and draws from more than 25,000 different employment listings worldwide. So now, in addition to helping you get promoted or bumped up the salary scale, your certification can actually help you find gainful employment. Pretty cool. Expect Acclaim's many other partners to quickly jump on this new development.


Military Veterans a Good Fit for IT Employers


There's a great deal of hue and cry in the IT world about the dwindling global supply of skilled IT professionals. At the same time, many IT companies and associations frequently participate in charitable efforts to help veterans transition out of the armed forces and into stable IT careers. With skilled IT workers becoming increasingly scarce, blogger Taryn Oesch took to the Training Industry website at the end of last week to suggest that ex-military members may be an untapped resource for struggling IT employers. More than just providing an outlet for IT charity, Oesch says that former soldiers have many of the qualities that employers are looking for. For example, they often have a disciplined approach to work, perform well in teams, aren't easily rattled, and can bring an added measure of respect and integrity to the workplace. There certainly aren't enough transitioning veterans to entirely fill the oft-lamented skills gap, but taking greater advantage of the pool of ex-soldiers may help some employers get by.


CompTIA Gets FAQ About the New Security+


Since its rollout at the beginning of October — neatly timed to coincide with the onset of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) — the revised and updated Security+ certification exam from CompTIA has basked in a number of different spotlights. Here at GoCertify, we already have a handful of free practice quizzes to help you get up to speed on what remains one of the most popular cybersecurity credentials out there. This week, CompTIA itself is joining in the general hubbub with an FAQ of sorts posted to the CompTIA IT Career News blog. Blogger Matthew Stern runs through a gamut of questions that many have probably asked since the SY0-501 series took the stage. For example, Stern describes some of the key changes that have been made, whether the new material is essential for working professional to know, and why those who are already Security+-certified should seek out SY0-501. There are several other questions addressed, so if you've been wondering about the new cert, then go check out the article.