My thoughts about certifications were always very skeptical: they don’t represent experience or high throughput. If you need to hire a professional for a certain job, which one would you pick? The one with wide knowledge and years of experience, or the one with less experience, but a resume laden with certificates supposed to ensure that the candidate’s know-how?
I was always holding myself back to get a certificate, because I would much rather spend my time studying things I can apply daily, instead of studying a bunch of stuff that I would never use. Just so I’d have a paper saying that I’m able to execute something. However, recently I was motivated by my co-workers to get a certification – that would ultimately require a certain time to study. It wasn’t something a simple weekend would resolve.
Even though I have many years of experience working with that technology, I didn’t feel that confident to do the exam. The questions seemed to be way more specific and minimal related to things I’ve been working on since I started programming. But I decided to face the exams.
When I had finished the exam, I thought I didn’t pass. I was wrong! After going through the first exam, I felt a huge relief. I started studying for the next certification and, at this point, the subject was more related to what I’ve been working on. After passing the second exam, that same motivational feeling came up. That was the moment I realized that my way of working changed because of the topics I had studied. This was at the same time the reason I decided to write about it. I think it’s very important to share my experience and with this convince other ITs to think once again before they are holding back.
After reading the entire Microsoft documentation to pass the tests 70-483 and 70-486, I realized that even though I don’t remember half of the material I got through, studying helped me at work. I now understand my work on a higher level: each code line is given way more thought and I understand a lot better what the framework really does.
In the end, I realized that all the time spent studying for the exams was worth it. I still don’t think that a resume laden with certifications can guarantee a good throughput, but I now know that it can lead to better coding and understanding.