Many recruiters and employers list various certifications under a list of requirements for applicants. I agree that getting the appropriate professional training is important, otherwise we wouldn’t be in the training business. When I was employed in a government post most of my training was in-house, mainly because most of or IT and technical systems were bespoke and developed in-house. Since then I personally have worked for telecommunication companies where Certification Training and the holding of current certification was deemed important.
I have to say that it is easy to be fixated with certification and always looking for the next training course with the intention of taking a relevant IT Certification exam on completion of the training course. At the end of the day, it is important that you can complete tasks required of you in you employment. Having a certification only proves that you can pass an exam, although it also proves your ability to learn.
When attending an interview for an IT job, the subject of certification and associated training courses will often crop up. The important thing the interviewer should be looking for is your ability to do the job and really should concentrate on what you can do and not what you should be able to do.
I personally have delivered Cisco certification training, and do advocate the quality of Cisco training material and procedures. I do hold certification myself but I have always found that particularly with individuals new to the IT industry, the actual training courses themselves present good value. They should then concentrate on moving forward with their newly learned skills and look to build on them rather than to become obsessed with passing certification exams.
Some companies have to have a certain number of certified staff, usually when they are a partner of a particular vendor and want to sell that vendors equipment and services. There is no way around it, and such an employer will need to keep up their quota of certified staff in order to receive benefits from the vendor.
IT Training certifications can sometimes open doors, but once inside you have to progress in the industry by contributing to the profitability of the company by demonstrating that you are efficient at your role and also flexible and innovative.
Attending the relevant training courses can give you the basic building blocks on which to further your skills and knowledge, often without the need for certification.