8 Certifications to Help You Stand Out in the Workforce

Get legit. Certifications prove to recruiters and employers that your skills are measurable and verified. Plus, the coursework is designed to be legitimately helpful. Don’t stress about getting a time-consuming or costly degree. Certifications in the following areas are often enough to make your resume stand out.

1. Coding.

Learn the language that lives underneath websites, apps and other digital products. Coding certificates can make HTML5, JavaScript, Node.js and other skills second nature.

Relevant careers: software developer; web developer

Two course options: Udemy’s “Become a Certified Web Developer” or Johns Hopkins University’s “HTML, CCS and JavaScript for Web Developers”

2. Digital marketing.

Is TikTok more popular than Facebook? How do you increase SEO? Prove to employers that you are current in your digital marketing strategies. Programs cover social media, web analytics, mobile marketing and more.

Relevant careers: Digital marketer; social media manager

Two course options: HubSpot’s “Content Marketing Certification” or “Skye Learning’s “Certificate in Digital Marketing.”  

3. Human Resources.

If you want to hire and retain top talent, you should care deeply about beefing up your own resume. A certificate in human resources boosts your skills in recruiting, management, employee relations and more.

Relevant careers: Human resources managers, directors, analysts, etc.

Two course options: LinkedIn Learning’s “Strategic Human Resources” or “Villanova University’s online HR credential program.”

4. Leadership and Management.

So often, good workers are promoted into management positions even though they have no idea how to lead. Learn to be the boss through coursework focused on topics like leadership principles, effective communication and organizational structure. Such skills can help you get that promotion—and keep it.

Relevant careers: Anyone who dreams of being the boss

Two course options: MIT Management Education’s “Sloan Executive Certificate in Management and Leadership.” or “The University of Michigan’s “Leading People and Teams.”


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5. Networks.

From email to file sharing, companies depend on their computer networks for almost everything. Certificates can help you master the science of programming, operating and securing a company’s network—which means you will be critical to daily operation.

Relevant careers: Network engineer, administrator, etc.

Two course options: Cisco offers several certifications, including CCNA and associate-level training or try CompTia’s “Network+”

6. Professional Sales.

Increase sales and increase profits. Certificates cover relationship building, negotiation strategies and other critical sales techniques.

Relevant careers: Sales professional; CEO; business owner

Two course options: National Association of Sales Professionals’ “Certified Professional Sales Person” or Certification programs from Challenger

7. Project Management.

All organizations have goals. Project managers help turn those goals into tangible, completed work. Certificate courses cover everything from how to develop a big-picture roadmap through how to use software that keeps everything on track. Study budgeting, resource allocation, effective evaluation and other skills.

Relevant careers: While project management certificates are designed primarily for, well, project managers, a certification can improve your organizational skills, no matter what your role.

Two course options: Cornell University’s “Project Management Certificate” or try Project Management Institute’s “Project Management Professional”

8. Writing.

Get serious about your literary ambitions or simply set yourself up to write better ad copy. Certifications cover the craft elements that go into strong sentences and powerful passages.

Relevant careers: Copywriter; technical writer, reporter

Two course options: UC Berkeley Extension’s “Certificate Program in Writing” or Northwestern’s “Creative Writing Certificate Program”


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