Benefits of a Globally Recognised & Transferable Professional Certification
To jump start a new career or for career advancement, you should seriously consider pursuing Professional Certification course. Professional qualifications can help you to develop the skills you need to work in a specific industry or job, and having one is an essential requirement for some roles. This article will explore the many benefits of a global recognised & transferable Professional Certification.
Stand Out From the Crowd
Does the Job You Want Require a Professional Qualification?
What is a Professional Qualification?
Professional qualifications focus on improving your ability to succeed in a particular occupation, which is ideal if you have a clear career objective and want to gain valuable on-the-job experience through professional training. Usually awarded by professional bodies within the relevant industry or sector, the professional certification often follow on from a degree or equivalent qualification, although this level of previous academic study isn’t always required.
Many careers demand that you possess a professional qualification. For example, to become a qualified financial planner your must take a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) course and have at least 3 years of relevant work experience to be eligible to become a Certified Financial Planner. In other cases, professional qualifications are not essential, but they allow you to achieve greater competence in your field and improve your prospects for progression. Search for professional courses offered by KMDC.
Benefits of a globally recognised & transferable Professional Certification
Professional certification that is globally recognized and transferable is proving hugely popular in a job landscape that now commonly features advertisements for specialist roles like Certified Financial Planner, Financial Risk Manager, Content Marketing Manager, Digital Strategist, Search Marketing, Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Digital Sales or Marketing Automation Manager. Benefits of a globally recognised & transferable Professional Certification include:
- Assurance of quality: An external certification means that an individual is accredited by a certification body that is recognized and validated; therefore, helping to improve career progression and salary expectations. In fact, 90% of employers surveyed by CompTIA agree that certified individuals are more likely to be promoted than those without, while 89% feel they perform better than non-certified staff in similar roles.
- Transferable qualifications: Having a certification that is recognized from industry to industry, as well as from country to country gives graduates the opportunity to move roles to progress their career. This is particularly important to millennials as job-hopping is common and 4 job changes by the age of 3212 is the norm for many.
- Boost salary and prospects: With business increasingly going digital, Communication and Marketing Managers have seen their salaries leap by 37%13 in the past year. This huge increase is due to the growing demand for digital professionals and the war for talent amongst organizations for qualified digital talent. Such is the demand, roles that use digital are growing 2.5 times more rapidly14 and offering wages 18% higher than non-digital roles.
- Stand out from the crowd: An external certification will enable a job candidate to demonstrate that their skills are validated and of a professional standard. This ensures that candidates are hired for the ‘right’ job that utilizes their skills, but also guarantees a level of enjoyment for the individual in that role.
- Increased morale and job security: With many feeling the weight of having to learn new skills and increase their digital capabilities particularly in the digital age, a certification that enhances knowledge can increase job satisfaction and security.
- Proof of abilities: A qualification clearly demonstrates a high level of skill and gives a potential employer faith and assurance in an individual’s abilities. It also differentiates one employee from another in a competitive environment.
- Validation of a continuous learning ethic: Gaining a certification demonstrates proactivity and motivation to learn and gain new knowledge that will not only benefits them personally, but also reaps rewards for a potential employer.
- Improved & increased knowledge: A certification ensures an improved level of knowledge in a specialist area – which in today’s fast-paced digital world is priceless.
How do professional qualifications differ from Masters degrees?
Postgraduate programmes like the popular MBA tend to involve in-depth academic study at university, which may prepare you for a particular career or provide general skills and knowledge that allow you to enter various fields of work.
Meanwhile, professional qualifications are typically more vocational in nature and act as an entry route into a specific job. They are usually accredited by professional bodies, for example, Certified FInancial Risk Manager (FRM) is accredited by GARP – Global Association of Risk Professionals, which set the exams and regulate the standards you should meet to work in certain roles.
However, there is often overlap between the two as a range of Masters courses are now accredited by the relevant professional body. For example, KDU University College offers MBA with specialisation in enterprise risk management, in collaboration with the Institute of Enterprise Risk Practitioners (IERP®) based in London, which blends academic and professional knowledge focusing on practical and holistic aspects of ERM.
What does a professional course involve and how long does it take to complete?
Professional courses are usually meant for working professionals and fresh graduates, thus, these courses are offered in part-time study mode. The contact hours per module or per subject differ from 40-60 hours. Part-time study usually takes place during the evenings and weekends; the pace is slower, but can be just as intense when coupled with your work and/or family commitments. You normally will attend class once a week on weekend. The professional courses usually can be completed within 6 months to 2 or 3 years.
Professional bodies increasingly provide multiple ways for you to study. For example, CFP and the 5 Digital Marketing courses offered by KMDC, have two formats: Blended Learning Mode (Face-to-face workshop plus online support) and Distance/Online Learning Mode.
Professional courses do not necessarily have fixed terms. Instead, courses often run a number of times throughout the year at locations nationwide. Assessment is usually through exams, coursework, a portfolio, or a combination of the three. Many courses are structured around a number of modules that you must pass to gain the qualification. For example, CFP is a 4-module course, while FRM is divided into Part 1 and Part 2 and each Part requires about 10-12 days of face-to-face exam review workshop. The 5 Digital Marketing courses each has 10 modules, each course can be completed in 6-10 full days of face-to-face workshop or if online learning, 30-hour online lecture video.
The professional body usually recommends 120 – 200 hours of study per module/per course, with exams held in mid year and end of the year. In the case of digital marketing courses, 3-hour online exam via Pearson Vue.
What are the entry requirements?
These are entirely dependent on the course and what it leads to, so check job profiles to find out the entry requirements for your chosen career.
Some courses are open to anyone, some require SPM/O-levels/High School or equivalent or A-levels or a degree, and others demand a number of years of relevant work experience. Many accrediting bodies offer different levels of vocational qualification suitable for school leavers, graduates and experienced professionals. Possessing some relevant work experience or having a demonstrable interest in the subject is often essential.
For entry requirement for CFP course is a degree, however, for people who are interested to pursue this qualification but without a degree, can opt for PLRA – Prior Learning Recognition Assessment. Once passed, then they are eligible to join the programme.
As for Digital Marketing professional courses, anyone can apply for the Professional Diploma. A background in a related discipline is not required; the aim of the Professional Diploma is to enable you to learn everything you need to know, so you can kick start your digital career. You could be a business owner, a traditional or digital marketing professional, a recent graduate, or simply looking to change your career. The only prerequisite is that you have an interest in digital marketing and want to progress your career.
How much does it cost?
Course fee depends on a range of factors and therefore varies significantly. The expense of a course will generally reflect its intensity and how important it is in the context of the career path you want to follow. For example, studying the CFP will cost you about RM8K – RM9K excluding exam fee (RM212 to RM318 per exam sitting). Digital Marketing courses will cost you around RM5K – RM7k per course excluding exam fee (USD$200 per exam sitting). Compare with the international fee charged by education providers outside Malaysia, these fees are a bargain. For example, Digital Marketing online course if registered directly with Digital Marketing Institute will cost you approximately RM9k to 11k. You save heaps studying the same professional courses in Malaysia.
Will my employer pay for the course?
If the qualification is essential for career progression, you are much more likely to receive employer sponsorship. This is particularly common if you work at a company with ‘Investors in People’ status. Bear in mind, however, that your employer may contractually oblige you to continue working for them for a set period following the course.
Alternatively you may be eligible for other sources of funding, such as EPF & HRDF. Certain approved courses are eligible for EPF withdrawal, such as CFP course. If your company has contributed towards Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF). Then, your company can sponsor you through this fund. KMDC is an approved education provider registered under PSMB and our professional courses including training workshop are HRDF claimable.
Find Out More: Professional Certification Courses that We Offer
If you’re looking to pursue a career that your undergraduate degree hasn’t prepared you for, do consider our offerings here: globally recognised and transferable Professional Certification courses which are offered in both Blended Learning Mode (Face-to-Face workshop + Online Support) and Online Learning Mode (except FRM):
- Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
- Certified Financial Risk Manager (FRM)
- Certified Digital Marketing Professional
- Certified Digital Sales Professional
- Certified Digital Marketing Specialist – Social
- Certified Digital Marketing Specialist – Search
- Certified Digital Marketing Specialist – Strategy & Planning