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More Means More

The return a technical certification can provide is related to the value of the abilities resultant from the certification. Obviously, the return on investment of Microsoft's MCP certification is not as great as compared to Cisco's CCNA certification. As well, the value of certification has an additive effect. Basically, the more certifications the IT professional has, the more he or she tends to get paid-more beats less every time when it comes to certification.

In an analysis of income and the number of technical certifications held, each additional certification had an average added return value of between $2,200 and $3,000 per added certification. Evidencing more being better, the holder of one technical certification had an average income of $53,000. A person with five technical certifications makes nearly $10,000 more ($62,000). A person with seven technical certifications makes, on average, makes $71,000. The highly certified individual with 10 certificates makes, on average, $75,000 per year. Figure 1 shows the difference in pay range for those holding multiple certifications.

Figure 1

Not only are more certifications better with regard to the income of the certificant, but certain combinations of certifications appear to bolster income. For example, if you held a Microsoft MCP certification, your average income is $53,230. However, if you added a MCSE certification to that, your average income would be $56,960. If you then were to add a Cisco CCNA certification on top of the two Microsoft certifications, your average income would jump to $59,380. Figure 2 depicts the increase seen by those adding those additional credentials. Figure 3, then, shows salary levels earned by those holding other certification combinations.

Figure 2

Figure 3

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