Re: Reality Check

Subject: Re: Reality Check
From: "Greg Holmes" <greg -dot- holmes -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Sat, 5 Aug 2006 07:35:41 -0400

<j-m -at- creativeoptions -dot- com> wrote:

How important is certification in securing a job or
contract/subcontract in IT/IS related positions, technical
writing, website development and such?

I can only speak for myself - it has clearly been of zero
importance for me, since I am certifiably nothing but insane ...

Is it true that 7-10 years of experience in these areas is
useless without a certification?

Depends on the employer or client - if they *really* are demanding
a cert, then sure, with them the experience may be useless. Though
I would urge you to not believe the "laundry list" type job postings
and just try anyway. (OK, you can believe it if the posting has been
around for awhile and has been edited to actually say "don't even think
about applying without XYZ cert." Maybe.)

Is it true that self education (I spend at least 3-4 hours
and more a day conducting my own training and education online)
has no value?

It has value to your work if it helps you do it. It has value
in getting you hired or getting you clients if you can sell them
on its value in improving your work.

Again, I can only speak for myself. I have no degree, no cert, nada.
I work as a normal full time employee doing web development, and I
also have three active freelance clients. On the other hand, my career
path was more or less:

1. Navy (where I got some tech writing experience) ->
2. Tech writing (where I got some web development experience
and met my first freelance contact) ->
3. Web development

... so I'm not sure what it would be like just coming in off the street.
Maybe some kind of certification would help in that case.

Greg Holmes

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