For anyone working in the ICT sector it would be almost impossible not to have heard the term “Vendor/ICT Certification”. Many readers today would already possess a vendor certification, or at the very least, had thought about attaining one.
A question I am asked often is “What is the difference between a Vendor/ICT Certification and an ACS Certification?”
Many vendor certifications require for you to study and pass a knowledge based exam. In theory, this might seem arduous and require a lot of preparation to succeed. The reality is that these types of exams are based on a number of multiple choice questions which do a good job in assessing a person’s ICT knowledge, but are not designed to demonstrate a person’s competence in the application of that knowledge.
Could you imagine if the workplace was structured like a knowledge based exam? You would be confronted with a multiple choice dialog box every time you wanted to do something and be asked to choose A, B, C, D or E to continue. That’s not how we work in the real world!
Other certifications require that you have years of demonstrated experience in a specific field before you can even apply to be considered for certification. This is how ACS Certification is structured.
ACS Certifications are incredibly important in order to meet the training requirements and standards necessary for professional recognition and career development.
Professional certification is the best risk mitigation strategy for business and it allows Australia’s ICT industry to maintain a high standard of professionalism.
Unlike vendor certifications, ACS Certified Professionals are certified using the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) comprised of 97 key skills, within 6 key categories and 7 levels of competency. This means that ACS certification uses specific core ICT functionalities, is vendor agnostic and utilizes a range of validation techniques as part of assessment.
While a Vendor/ICT Certification is a good benchmark for ICT knowledge, ACS Certification independently assesses how that knowledge is applied as a level of competence/responsibility.
To find out more about ACS Certification, please click here.
I look forward to meeting the young ACS professionals at next weeks Young Professionals Half-Day Conference, where I will be talking further on the importance of academic qualifications and vendor certifications.
Ps. If in doubt. Always choose C!
Director, Professional Certifications at ACS