Salary Survey Extra: Hiring impact of project management certification
Posted on
June 10, 2016

Salary Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

Project management certs can help you get a job.

There's a famous (and possibly apocryphal) story about Walt Disney that illustrates a simple point about hiring and employee management. The story goes that Disney, who had a Kansas City Star paper route in childhood, was briefly hired at the Star as a young man and budding cartoonist. His employment there supposedly ended on account of the editor being bothered by Disney's lack of imagination.

The point is that sometimes hiring isn't as scientific as we'd all like to think it is, and that qualifications and skills can't always keep you on the payroll once you've got the job. Like most other things in life, hiring and employment are subject to whims and circumstances. It's often reasonably clear what got you hired to do a particular job, but sometimes that decision comes down to factors you didn't even consider, or may not have had any control over.

That being said, most people can at least make an educated guess as to why their employer brought them aboard, and many have much more concrete information. So whenever we address a particular IT skill set in our Salary Surveys, we always ask about hiring. Did your knowledge of security, or networking, or cloud computing, or whatever it is that we're surveying about, help you get hired?

For project managers, as with many IT specialists, prior work experience is generally viewed as being the most impactful element of hiring decisions. Asked to rank four potential hiring influences — education, certification, work experience, and  professional networking (business interactions and personal connections) — most survey respondents said they view experience as having the most impact on hiring.

Professional networking is next, followed by certification, followed by education. On the other hand, a significant majority of  survey respondents believe that certification does impact hiring. Roughly 21 percent of those surveyed said that certification was very influential in being hired to work at their current job. A strong 27.6 percent said certification was influential, while an additional 17.2 percent rated it as being at least somewhat influential.

The remaining 34 percent said that it was probably not a factor. So there's at least a (roughly) 1 in 3 chance that you could probably get hired to work in project management without getting a project management certification, right?

Whether or nor your project management certification help you get the job, however, it's almost certain to help you keep it. As noted elsewhere, 35 percent of survey respondents said that they use skills learned or enhanced through project management certification several times per day at their current job.

Rey on Jakku

DADDY ISSUES  Have you seen the new Star Wars movie? SPOILER ALERT: One of the central mysteries left unsolved at the end of The Force Awakens concerns the parentage of Rey, the budding Jedi played by Daisy Ridley. Nobody seems to wonder much about her mother, perhaps because there are fewer notable options. But fans have been geeking out for months attempting to determine who might issue a Darth Vader-style revelation to Rey in an upcoming installment of the continuing saga.

Because we like to address the weighty issues of the day, we asked survey respondents what they think. Does Rey have a Peter Parker-like backstory, where she was orphaned and left with relatives who ditched her on Jakku? Did her father ever know her? And, more importantly, is Pops a character who has already been introduced, or someone we've yet to meet? And the Salary Survey says:

Someone related to Obi-Wan — 30.8 percent
Who are we talking about here? Ray Charles? Sugar Ray Robinson? Playa del Rey? 23.1 percent
Luke — 17.2 percent
Who cares?Star Wars is for nerds. 13.6 percent
The old dude who gives Poe that one thing — 9.4 percent
Lando — 3.5 percent
Han — 2.1 percent
No Votes Received: Nien Nunb, Jean-Luc Picard

Original question: Who is Rey's father?

About the Author

Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

Posted to topic:
Jobs and Salary

Important Update: We have updated our Privacy Policy to comply with the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)

CompTIA IT Project Management - Project+ - Advance Your IT Career by adding IT Project Manager to your resume - Learn More