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CompTIA Member Provides Testimony to House on Role of Certification Programs in Meeting Small Business Needs

Washington, D.C., Sept. 8, 2011 – Today, the House Small Business Committee held a hearing on Innovative Approaches to Meeting the Workforce Needs of Small Businesses. The hearing focused on small businesses' growing need for highly skilled and trained workers and how private, industry-led portable skills certification programs are helping meet these needs while improving career and educational prospects for students and workers.

As a trade association representing more than 2,000 IT member companies, CompTIA is a strong advocate for small business. Of the roughly 385,000 IT firms in the U.S., 95 percent, or about 360,000 firms, have fewer than 50 employees and fall into this category. Furthermore, other small businesses hire 40 percent of all tech workers to remain efficient, secure and innovative. 

CompTIA is also a globally-recognized provider of vendor-neutral IT certification exams. CompTIA's certifications allow for individuals to pursue a career track by taking them  from a basic, foundational level of computer knowledge to more advanced and specialized areas that lead to long-term career opportunities. Additionally, CompTIA's certifications are compatible with the certification programs of other development organizations, and they are accepted around the globe.

"As CompTIA's members both comprise the small business sector and serve it, we see first-hand the benefit these certifications provide to individuals seeking careers in the IT sector and the firms that require their services," said Todd Thibodeaux, president and CEO of CompTIA. "As unemployed Americans look to rejoin the workforce, training and credentialing are vital steps to address the gap between what IT employers are looking for and the skills possessed by those looking for sustainable jobs."

Scott Watkins, the owner of Modern Tech Squad, a CompTIA Authorized Service Center in the Florida panhandle, provided testimony at today's hearing regarding the importance of credentials in the IT industry.

"Many of our customers – over half of them in-fact – are small businesses just like us," said Watkins. "These small businesses depend on IT services, but are too small to have a dedicated IT department. I have heard horror stories of a small business hiring an IT guy who claimed to know what he was doing only to realize that was not the case. A small business cannot afford to spend their hard-earned money on solutions that do not work. With a CompTIA certification, I know that the customer will have peace of mind that their hard earned money is being well spent on someone who is trained properly and who provides the right solution the first time."

CompTIA's research has shown that employers are inclined to rely on professional certifications when hiring IT workers. Nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of IT hiring managers rate IT certifications as having extremely high or high value in validating skills and expertise. Eight in ten human resources (HR) professionals surveyed believe IT certifications will grow in usefulness and importance over the next two years. 

"We hope the House Small Business Committee will support the needs of small firms by recognizing the value of certifications in providing high quality, reliable job training at this key economic time," Thibodeaux said. "These programs are crucial to filling jobs and maintaining innovation in our small businesses."

About CompTIA
CompTIA is the voice of the world’s information technology (IT) industry. As a non-profit trade association advancing the global interests of IT professionals and companies, CompTIA is the recognized authority for IT education and credentials and the primary advocate for IT businesses and workers. Through its foundation, CompTIA also enables disadvantaged populations to gain the skills they need for employment in the IT industry. CompTIA's vision of the IT landscape is shaped by more than 25 years of global perspective and more than 2,000 members and 1,000 business partners. For more information, visit or follow CompTIA on Twitter at

CompTIA's public advocacy group focuses on a broad array of issues affecting the IT industry, with particular emphasis on representing the interests of small and mid-sized IT companies and entrepreneurs, supporting an innovation and competitiveness agenda and addressing secure technology issues such as cybersecurity, data breach, privacy and more. For more information, visit