5 In-demand IT certifications for beginners

If you’re curious about which IT certifications will provide the most job opportunities and help launch your tech career, look no further! We used real-time job analysis software to identify more than 400,000 entry-level IT job postings from the past twelve months in order to identify the top five IT certifications employers are seeking from candidates.*

1. Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)

What is it? The CCNA is a lower-level certification that assures employers you are able to install, operate and configure enterprise level switches and routers. CCNA certified individuals can also detect and solve common network problems and have the option of specializing in security, voice or wireless networking.

Certification process: You can become CCNA certified by passing a single 90-minute written exam consisting of about 50-60 questions.

Entry-level job postings seeking this credential: 5,520

Most common job titles:

  • Network engineer
  • Network administrator
  • Systems administrator

2. CompTIA A+ Technician

What is it? CompTIA A+ is an entry-level certification and is a basic starting point for an IT career. Certified A+ technicians handle the maintenance of PCs, printers, operating systems, mobile devices and laptops.

Certification process: You must pass two exams in order to receive the CompTIA A+ certification — one multiple choice and one performance-based.

Entry-level job postings seeking this credential: 7,681

Most common job titles:

  • In-home support specialist
  • Desktop support technician
  • Help desk technician

3. Network+

What is it? Network+ is a globally recognized certification that verifies your ability to design, manage and troubleshoot wired and wireless networks.

Certification process: You must pass a single 90-question exam on the configuration of wired and wireless network devices and other emerging technologies.

Entry-level job postings seeking this credential: 4,738

Most common job titles:

  • Helpdesk technician
  • Information technology specialist
  • Information technology technician

4. Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)

What is it? CISSP is a globally recognized credential verifying information security competency in order to protect organizations from attack. The credential proves extensive technical and managerial abilities to engineer and manage information security programs.

Certification process: The CISSP exam covers eight subjects: security and risk management, asset security, security engineering, communications and network security, identity and access management, security assessment and testing, security operations and software development security.

Entry-level job postings seeking this credential: 4,463

Most common job titles:

  • Information technology auditor
  • Security analyst
  • Information security analyst

5. Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE)

What is it? The MCSE is a mid-level certification that validates an individual’s ability to build innovative solutions across multiple technologies. MCSE certification is offered in the following specializations: server infrastructure, desktop infrastructure, private cloud, enterprise devices and apps, data platform, business intelligence, messaging, communication and SharePoint.

Certification process: The steps to become certified will vary depending on your preferred concentration, but the exam is a five-step process that incorporates various question formats such as multiple choice, drag-and-drop and simulation problems.

Entry-level job postings seeking this credential: 1,525

Most common job titles:

  • Systems administrator
  • Field systems technician
  • Systems engineer

Which IT certifications interest you?

Earning an IT certification may be all that’s standing in the way of your future tech career, so what are you waiting for? If you’re ready to leave behind your dead-end job in order to launch a fulfilling career, there’s no better time than now to join the IT industry.

Not only can you get started sooner than you thought, you might be surprised at the earning potential you could have.

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