The Best IT Certifications for 2024

by Rachel Estes
January 25, 2024

As the skills gap widens and the talent competition intensifies, an increasing number of IT professionals seek ways to distinguish themselves by acquiring additional certifications for their resumes. In 2023, Skillsoft conducted a comprehensive analysis of reported salaries among 1,900 IT professionals worldwide, aiming to identify the most lucrative certifications in the industry.  

Armed with the insights from Skillsoft’s survey, let’s dive into some of the best IT certifications to pursue in 2024 associated with the highest pay. We’ll delve into the specifics of each certification, shedding light on how they can elevate your career. Stay tuned until the end of the article for a bonus certification suggestion that might just be the game-changer you need! Prepare to elevate your career and stand out in the competitive IT landscape. 

 

Table of Contents 

  • Google Cloud – Professional Cloud Architect 
  • CISM – Certified Information Security Manager 
  • PMP®: Project Management Professional 
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certified Solutions Architect – Professional 
  • CompTIA A+ 

 

 

1. GOOGLE CLOUD – PROFESSIONAL CLOUD ARCHITECT 

AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY WITH CERTIFICATE: $200,960 

As 2023 ended, Google’s Professional Cloud Architect certification claimed the top spot as the highest-paying IT certification, with earners averaging over $200,000 annually. 

This certification attests to the recipient’s proficiency in designing, developing, and managing resources within Google’s cloud architecture. The evolution and widespread adoption of cloud technology, coupled with the growing trust in providers like Google for information governance, have elevated the importance of cloud architects, making them increasingly indispensable for any and every organization that requires data management. 

Google Cloud PCA Certificate

 

2.  CISM – CERTIFIED INFORMATION SECURITY MANAGER 

AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY WITH CERTIFICATE: $167,396 

The Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) certification from ISACA remains a cornerstone in the cybersecurity domain, recognized for its credibility and lucrative rewards. According to Skillsoft’s 2023 survey, CISM secured a spot in the top three certifications, boasting an impressive average annual salary of $162,347. 

CISM validates proficiency in managing, designing, and evaluating an enterprise’s information security, showcasing expertise across vital domains such as information security governance, risk management, program development, and incident management. 

Given its status as one of the most sought-after certifications in the IT field, achieving CISM success is no small feat. With only 50-60% of first-time test-takers triumphing in the examination, professionals are required to have at least five years of professional work experience before attempting to earn this prestigious certification. 

 

CISM Certifications

3. PMP®: PROJECT MANAGEMENT PROFESSIONAL 

AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY WITH CERTIFICATE: $176,116 

As industries increasingly adopt project-centric approaches, the demand for proficient project managers is projected to surge. The Project Management Institute forecasts a need for 5 million project management professionals by 2030.  

At the forefront of certifications in this domain is the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI®), acknowledged as one of the most esteemed credentials. 

The PMP certification not only validates a project manager’s experience but also signifies their mastery of various project management methodologies. These methodologies encompass the predictive life cycle (waterfall), agile, and hybrid approach, offering a comprehensive understanding of diverse project management frameworks. 

Over 60,000 individuals annually enroll in Project Management Professional certification programs, indicating a substantial interest in enhancing project management skills and knowledge. the PMP exam boasts a pass rate of around 70%. 

PMP Certificate

 

4. Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certified Solutions Architect – Professional 

AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY WITH CERTIFICATE: $174,137 

Another high-salary earner, AWS certifications represent companies’ deep desire to invest in professionals to safeguard robust cloud infrastructures. 

Earning the AWS Certified Solutions Architect certification showcases your expertise in crafting and executing cloud initiatives on the AWS platform, as well as streamlining infrastructure, bolstering security measures, and minimizing costs 

With 75 lengthy questions over 3 hours, the AWS exam is one of the toughest on this list. There is a fail rate of 72%, which means only a staggering 28% pass this exam on their first try. Thus, the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification is recommended before embarking on this daunting yet rewarding endeavor. 

5. CompTIA A+ 

if you’re a complete newbie and the above certifications seem a little daunting, don’t worry…we got you!  If you’re an entry-level IT professional looking to break into the industry, CompTIA A+ is a perfect beginner’s certification to earn. 

Though not on Skillsoft’s list, CompTIA is a vendor-neutral industry standard for launching IT careers. According to Statista, CompTIA A+ was the number 1 certification held by IT Professionals in 2022.  

This certification illustrates that an individual has a generalized skill set and understanding of core tech, from security to networking to virtualization across multiple platforms. 

COMPTIA A+

 

Conclusion 

In the ever-evolving IT sector, staying ahead requires more than skills; it demands strategic investments in certifications. As industries evolve and technology advances, investing in these certifications not only validates skills but also opens doors to rewarding career opportunities in the IT realm. 

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