When did certifications from vendors ever become important? They are not at all like licenses or certifications for doctors, lawyers, dentists, etc. IT certs are from vendors whose incentive is the promotion of their own products! Computer science degrees and Project Management Institute's certs have validity, but not vendor certs!
Ok, perhaps there is some validity to specific OS management certs like MSCE if that's all you are going to do, but I see nothing out there in software, database, let alone architect that has any credibility whatsoever. Being trained in a product is not training in the fundamentals. Perhaps true licensing boards with non-product-specific training for IT fields is overdue, but please ignore vendor certs for they have little value; certainly don't base your hiring on them.
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This was first published in August 2005