Online certifications are making new inroads. For decades, it has been an accepted principle that if you want a solid professional career, you must obtain a four year degree. This has been a minimum requirement for most employment. This has included performing well in high school, then meeting the required demands of college admissions. Upon graduating college, there was a significant debt load and an expectation that a well paying job would be available. Unfortunately, these trends have been changing, as more and more college graduates are finding that they are are not able to secure the type careers that they thought would be available to them. These struggling graduates are then relegated to working at low paying jobs outside of their career path, while trying to satisfy their debt obligations.
Changing the Expectations
More employers are now hiring applicants without the traditional educations, in lieu of applicants that have obtained their education through non-traditional methods. These same employers are also willing to look at applicants that possess certifications that prepare them for their industry. These new job seekers are finding there are more opportunities in the current job climate than for applicants with a degree. For the job seeker, they are finding that obtaining an online education with blended learning options have a much higher return on investment and significantly lower their debt load when entering the workforce. Freelance professionals are the perfect example of the new face of the American workforce. They are able to take advantage of online certifications, with blended learning opportunities, then land the perfect career situation. According to a recent survey by Upwork, 54 million people worked in a freelance capacity in 2015. That number will exceed 75 million during 2016. That number equates to about 24% of the US population. The attraction of a free lifestyle, coupled with flexible work hours and environment, are the main reasons for this surge. A freelancer is able to easily compete in their industry with either online certifications or an online education background. This strategy is changing the face of the American workforce.
The Future of Online Certifications
For some industries and professions, a formal degreed education cannot be avoided. However, workers are quickly discovering that obtaining an education through online certifications, blended education, or certification options make more sense than the formal education process. Employers are more open to hiring these professionals or working with freelancers in their industry. The Six Sigma and Lean professions are one of those professions that are enjoying this transformation in the workforce. For a person who wants to pursue a career in Lean Six Sigma, a certification with online or blended education programs are now getting them hired! If they choose not to go the traditional route, a Six Sigma or Lean professional is just as able to enter the freelance area and enjoy a productive and satisfying career.