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CompTIA updates A+ certifications to inrease skill levels

The training organisation has updated its certifications to make sure those channel staff undergoing the exams come out with the most relevant skills

CompTIA has relaunched its A+ certification to ensure that the exams remain relevant for those in the channel increasing the range of their skills.

The organisation has changed the emphasis of the certification to include more encourage the development of problem solving and critical thinking skills.

Technologies covered by the exams also cover the emerging areas, including cloud computing, security, IoT and virtualisation.

“New content included in the CompTIA A+ 1000 series exams reflects the impact of new and emerging technologies,” said Dr. James Stanger, chief technology evangelist for CompTIA.

“Workplace technology continues to change, sometimes radically. CompTIA A+ captures the critical skills that IT professionals need to support and secure today’s end points, from traditional and mobile platforms to cloud-enabled IoT devices. No other certification in the marketplace offers this combination of skills assessment and validation," he added.

Those already studying for the 900 series exams will remain available for several months and CompTIA is advising those studying to continue and take the exams.

The new exams

The CompTIA A+ Core Series requires candidates to pass two exams: Core 1 (220-1001) and Core 2 (220-1002). The exams cover the following subjects:
• Infrastructure: network architecture, network components and protocols, endpoints
• Hardware: PCs, mobile devices, hardware components, IoT and embedded systems
• Data: Backup, recovery, storage, management and analytics
• Security: Settings, administration, threats and vulnerabilities, threat prevention methods and tools
• Software: cloud-based software, operating systems, email administration
• Operations and Service: troubleshooting, problem solving, foundational IT skills, customer service and other “soft” skills

There are numerous attempts underway to improve the levels of skills in the channel and last week the latest was launched with distributor Westcon launching its Tech Xpert Community, which gives technical staff at resellers a chance to improve their knowledge.

“There is a lot of pressure on partners to deliver ever greater value to customers in a more technologically complex world,” said Mike Cox, Westcon vendor and alliances director.

From a customer perspective the pressure on skills is creating difficulties for those planning digital transformation projects.

A recent CIO survey from Harvey Nash/KPMG found that a lack of talent was holding back moves to a more digital organisation and 46% are looking to outsourcing to get access to the knowledge that they need.

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