How Microsoft technology drives IT job growth

During a tough economy, IT certification providers like Microsoft see a spike in business as high-tech job seekers look to hone sought-after skills.

IT job seekers would be smart to explore gaining an IT certification with Microsoft, according to the software maker, who says a revamped training catalog addresses emerging technologies such as virtualization and cloud computing as well as foundational high-tech skills.5 hot IT certification picks for 2010“In terms of training and certification, we have seen the fastest ramp up on Windows 7 than any technology in the past five years,” says Chris Pirie, general manager of sales and marketing for Microsoft Learning. “We are anticipating a big wave of desktop refreshes and we will be having a new wave of Office software this summer. Certification is very hot for us right now.”According to Pirie, three factors contribute to an increased interest in acquiring Microsoft IT certifications: the general health of the economy; a pressured job market; and the release of "hot new technologies" such as virtualization and cloud computing. For that reason, Windows Server 2008 and the components surrounding related training is "going very strong," Pirie says. And due to the "buzz" generated around Windows 7, Microsoft expects to see IT certification in desktop support as well as the operating system itself take off.

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The popularity of certain technologies such as Windows 7 does not only impact the vendor's revenue, but also the IT market as a whole and according to research from IDC, IT employment."As a subset of the software market, Windows 7 will drive a subset of employment," reads the IDC report "The Economic Impact of Microsoft's Windows 7, Worldwide." "By the end of 2010, Windows 7-related employment will account for more than 7 million jobs -- or 19% of all IT employment -- in the global IT industry and at user organizations. This is 1.2 million in hardware companies, nearly 280,000 in software companies, 1.5 million in services and channel firms, and 4.2 million in IT organizations."Essential guide to Windows 7 managementMicrosoft's program works to keep employed IT professionals current on new technologies as well as helps them demonstrate their skills to employers, Pirie says. And for both employed and unemployed high-tech workers, an IT certification from Microsoft could help differentiate a candidate from the competition."An IT career is a super bet right now. We are looking at skills shortages around the world, with 5.5 million jobs expected to be coming into the IT industry by 2013," Pirie says. "The pace of change with technology keeps this industry going and for anyone that loves technology and is a lifelong learner, the call is to stay current and demonstrate that currency by having advanced skill sets."Posted by Denise DubieDo you Tweet? Follow Denise Dubie on Twitter here.

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