With the sudden surge of new grads and industry standards at an all-time high, many people are now considering specializations in order to add value to their education. With a surplus of students now on the job hunt, resumes need to stand out in order to be seen by organizational leadership.

Certifications such as project management, digital and social media, contract management, information technology and marketing and media are a few of the hottest certificates that many new grads are flocking to earn in order to get that highly-sought and lucrative interview. Here’s a brief overview of what you can get out of these certificates.

Project Management

Image Source: Freedigitalphotos.net
Image Source: Freedigitalphotos.net

The project management certification lets employers know that you have the capabilities of starting and finishing your projects. In project management, you are taught how to maximize organizational efficiency, utilize company resources to your advantage, stay on time and on budget in order to execute your projects. Because it is a management certification, a lot of the classes deal with business and finance, allowing new grads to understand and survive in today’s corporate environment. Many schools are now offering Project Management certification courses, so be sure to look for a school that offers them in your area.

Digital and Social Media

With a changing consumer landscape, many companies and media organizations are now relying on digital technology and social media practices to go head-to-head with competitors. A certification in digital and social media gives new grads the necessary tools to research markets and consumers in social networks, plan effective social media campaigns, execute said campaigns and evaluate their effectiveness using online metrics. Like the project management certificate, a digital and social media certificate can be used almost anywhere since most companies now are looking to form and maintain relationships with stakeholders, markets and audiences.

Contract Management

All companies today deal with legal agreements in one form or another. Contract management deals with drafting contracts that hold legal authority for companies and other parties. Due to the sensitive nature of contract management within companies, most trust their contracts with lawyers. However, a certification in contract management will make you an invaluable asset to the company, even if you’re not an attorney. With it, you will learn how to develop and understand contract types, gain knowledge of laws and regulations, learn to develop proposal and how to oversee subcontracting such as acquisition planning, solicitation development, sourcing, and price analysis. There is no doubt that a certificate in contract management will add value to your resume.

Information Technology

Information technology is an area that is always changing and evolving as new software and technology becomes available for both the public and private sector. Information technology the the application of computers and telecommunications to store, retrieve and manipulate data. A certification in information technology allows people to manage networks, develop and instal software, and manage and develop a company’s technology life cycle by maintaining, upgrading and replacing software. What makes this certification so popular is that it allows people to handle the inner workings of an organization, such as company websites, applications, local online systems and even payroll, making information technology dire for an organization’s survival.

Marketing and Media

Because today’s world is so competitive, many companies are now switching to more creative approaches in order to sell their products and services. Certificates in marketing and media teaches students to craft and execute interesting, diverse, challenging, and creative projects and campaigns. Not only are you taught to think creatively, but you also learn how to effectively research your market in order to insure a desired effect in the consumer. Large organizations and enterprises highly values creative marketing, making this certificate a hot commodity.

Whether you’re a new graduate, a returning student or perhaps just someone who wishes to advance faster in their current job, certifications are worth looking into. Not only will you garner more interviews, but you will have with you knowledge that is absolutely essential for the survival of the American enterprise.

This is a guest post by Sara Stringer

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  • Excellent post Misty! You have outlined some excellent certification areas. As you pointed out, the job market is constantly changing and ever evolving. But with some of the areas of interest you have listed, a person will certainly have some of the basics needed, and what is wonderful is that they can be applied to many across the board industries. Contracts Management is one place that has started to receive more attention as of late in many businesses. Companies all over are seeing what benefits can be obtained through an effectively run contract. It can increase their bottom line profits! The marketplace is very competitive, so anything that that an interviewee can bring to the table that can help a company would be a valuable asset to have.

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