IT certifications can be a real boon to your career or those of your staff, unless you fall prey to some of the common pitfalls associated with professional development.

CloudCheckr CTO Anu Subramanian weighed in on IT certification mistakes to avoid in CIO this month. Subramanian advises IT professionals to be specific about their goals:

“While certifications offer great opportunities, we have seen employees spread themselves too thin and try to learn multiple skills all at once. Rather than choose multiple courses for various certifications, what often works best is targeting your approach. For example, they could choose to go after certain niche certifications like security, cloud management, AI, automation, etc., or they can choose to target a platform — there are certifications specific to AWS and Azure.”

Subramanian also recommends that employers give their personnel opportunities for advancement through certifications:

“Organizations should ensure that career advancement opportunities are available to those who pursue and successfully obtain certifications. You want to avoid the scenario where a company upskills their employees only to watch them leave for a competitor. By investing in the continued financial and career success of your employees through opportunities for IT certifications, companies can ultimately help to close the skills gap and improve talent acquisition and retention.”

Continue reading IT certification mistakes to avoid by Josh Fruhlinger in CIO