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Certification Watch (Vol. 21, No. 48)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, CompTIA reveals three keys to help you unlock IT success, Microsoft Learning has some exams available in beta, and more.

Succeed in IT with CompTIA's Three Keys


CompTIA describes some familiar keys essential to achieving success in IT.IT certification media is frequently rife with encouraging rules, maxims, tips, and so forth that promise success to those who carry out this workplace action, or put in place that career strategy. More often than not, whoever's giving the advice explains their rationale without resorting to specific illustrations. Items posted to the IT Career News blog of tech industry association CompTIA sometimes buck this trend by referring to a specific person's career or workplace experience to drive home the suggestions being made. Such is the case with an item from last week that recommends three tactics to help IT workers "rise to the top." Blogger Jessalynne Madden describes the career turnaround of IT engineer Neil Madaczky, then zeroes in key elements of his story for her three career success recommendations. The points made are fairly standard stuff — get certified, keep in touch with others in your field, pursue career development activities outside of work — but it feels more immediate and empowering because of what we're told about Madaczky's individual experience.


ISACA's CISA Certification a Clear Path to Relevancy


Speaking of career success and certification, there's a fresh perspective on an established credntial this week at the ISACA Now Blog of cybersecurity and IT governance association ISACA. The Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) certification is essentially the gold standard in its IT niche, and blogger Akinwale Akindiya outlines a laundry list of challenges that CISA-certified auditors will be better-equipped to confront than their non-certified counterparts. For example, Akindiya notes that information has, in the modern business landscape, become an asset as vital as "land, buildings, oil wells, gold, and cash" were to titans of industry in previous generations. Data life cycle management (process encompassed in the CISA body of knowledge) is therefore of critical importance to modern business ventures. Similarly, protecting modern business assets requires active and engaged cybersecurity maintenance, as well as compliance with a host of various regulations (including regularly-emerging newcomers like GDPR). It's a valuable summarization for anyone considering CISA certification.


Improve Your Employability by Mastering Soft Skills


You can't have a career in the IT realm without some degree of expertise in so-called "hard" skills: assembling or repairing a computer, for example, or designing and building a functioning computer network. It's become increasingly de rigueur, however, for workers in all industries to improve their grasp of what have become known as "soft" skills: functioning well in workplace teams, mastering oral and written communication, and so forth. A new article by IT executive Nathan Kimpel at, the official website of Certification Magazine, takes a long look at seven key areas of emphasis for workers hoping to sharpen soft skills. For example, Kimpel believes that a sense of humor can be an essential workplace asset, but also that there's more to it than just inserting jokes into your daily routine. Whether you're an employee hoping to improve your soft skills footing, or a manager charged with helping team members get softer (as it were), there some worthwhile advice to consider here.


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