Holding an up-to-date A+ Certification is vital to modern-day IT technicians. The computer era was once driven by seat-of-the-pants self-taught IT groundbreakers. However, technology began to advance at an almost incomprehensible pace. The early age of computer programming and repair vanished beneath a demand for organized methods of training. Company employed technicians struggled to keep pace, and something had to give.
The roots of the change began in 1982 when five major vendors created the Association of Better Computer Dealers (ABCD). The group came together under a single goal: Find the means for enhanced IT services for vendors and consumers.
In 1993, a revolutionary change healed the riff. It came about through the hands of suggestions and actions of CompTIA, a renamed and expanded version of the ABCD.
Prior to the significant A+ Certification programs introduced by CompTIA, IT educational documentations were company related and company regulated. Most major manufacturers including IBM and Dell required prospective employees to participate in precision training programs specific to their brand name. Corporations that had shaped an IT department around the skills of self-taught individuals remained outside the loop. They were vulnerable to the introduction of new technologies that may have reached beyond the scope of their self-taught IT employees.
Strategies introduced through the 1993 CompTIA certification programs leveled the technical playing field. The vendor-neutral CompTIA training programs ensured every company of graduates that were competent in a broad range of computer operating systems, skills and technologies.
Changes Along the Way and for Today
Unless specifically studying old forms of production, repair or creation, no training program can linger in the past. Since 1993, the CompTIA exam has undergone various major changes. For example:
- 2003 introduced a division of the process that separated hardware exams from software exams
- 2007 heralded in the prestige of accreditation from the American National Standards Institute
- 2009 presented new challenges due to a demand for technicians with the skills for adapting to real world IT complications
To remain relevant with current needs in the IT industry, CompTIA continues to update the specs of the program. Employers expect prospective IT administrators and computer repair techs to maintain an ongoing education. Keeping up to date is easier now than it was in the pre-1993 days, but it still requires dedication to education.
2012 A+ Certification exam updates include the following changes and more:
- Disposal of Windows 2000
- In-depth SOHO security
- Handling mobile devices and wireless network connections
- Full support for the Windows 7 OS.
(Note that August 31, 2013 is earmarked for retirement of exams 220-701 and 220-702.)
Graduate job opportunities are not limited to computer manufacturers and corporate environments. For example: According to USAJOBS Working For American, basic requirements for a recent Federal Bureau of Investigation job posting for a Forensic Examiner included A+ Certification for personal computer hardware services and others.
Certified technicians can expect to receive a 5 to 15 percent income increase over employees who lack the documentation. Currently, documented educational evidence remains a preferred method of entry into the IT field. Now is a good time for you to open your windows to opportunity.