AWS Certification, PMP Certification with the Highest Social Recognition

 The average salary of those who receive these 10 IT certifications ranges from USD 130,000 to 175,000 per year.

Eighty percent of Information Technology (IT) professionals say the IT certification is an open sesame to a well-paid job. To this end, we studied the data provided by the professional course provider Global Knowledge to find out the top 10 IT certifications with the highest income in the world. These data are based on what Global Knowledge's customers are learning and how much they are paid being employed after graduation. According to the professional description and the corresponding salary range, we have selected the 10 best options: cloud computing certification and project management certification, which accounted for the top five.

From the perspective of the salary range, the average salary of those who receive these 10 IT certifications ranges from 130,000 to 175,000 U.S. dollars per year. In other words: taking any certificate can help you earn more than 100,000 U.S. dollars every year.

Please note that these figures change every year, so we will update them every time Global Knowledge releases new data. Please keep this list so that the next time you think about changing your career direction, you can see which certificate is at the top of the list at that time. Let's keep insights on the most popular IT professional skill certifications in 2020 and their corresponding salary level.

aws certified

TOP 10: ITILInformation Technology Infrastructure Library

The Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) has slipped from the seventh place last year to the tenth place in 2020. It is the most recognized IT infrastructure library in the world. It has maintained this status for the past 30 years. It covers a set of best practices for providing IT services to the needs of the organization. It is a broad discipline covering many important professional fields, such as IT operations, emergency management, capacity management, availability and so on. Its best practices aim to control or reduce IT costs, improve IT services and balance IT resources.

ITIL Foundation is the starting level of this certification and provides a general understanding of the IT service lifecycle. The average annual income of managers who have obtained ITIL Foundation Certification is USD 129,000.

TOP 9: VMware Certification Professional 6 - Data Center Virtualization

The new role this year is VCP-DCV: VMware Certified Professional 6-Data Center Virtualization. This certification validates the skills required to build a scalable virtual infrastructure using VMwarev Sphere 6. Certification candidates will learn how to deploy, integrate, and manage virtualization technologies, such as vSphere High Availability and Distributed Resource Scheduler clusters.

IT professionals with this certificate can obtain an average of 7.4 professional certifications, which is the highest in the Global Knowledge list. The average annual salary of IT professionals with this certification is USD 130,000.

TOP 8: AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner

AWS Cloud Practitioner is a new face entering the top 10 this year. It is the starting point for various popular cloud computing certifications. Other cloud computing certifications include AWS Solutions Architect, Developer, DevOps Engineer and SysOps Administrator.

The foundation certification of AWS Cloud Practitioner is designed for professionals who seek a general understanding of AWS cloud services. As a basic level certification, people often get this certificate early in their careers, because it is a springboard for obtaining more professional AWS certifications in the future. As the market's demand for cloud and AWS cloud management grows this year, the issuance of AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certificates will continue to grow.

AWS Cloud Practitioner verifies the practitioner’s ability to define basic cloud infrastructure, architectural principles, and key services on the AWS platform. Certified professionals should also be able to describe the basic security and compliance of the platform. According to Global Knowledge, more than 12% of IT professionals in the United States plan to obtain this certification in 2020. Their average annual salary is USD 131,000 .

TOP 7: CISACertified Information Systems Auditor

Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) is one of the oldest and most respected certificates. CISA certification is a newcomer to this year's list, which aims to verify the subjects' skills in auditing, risk management and cybersecurity. Enterprises hire CISA-certified IT experts to ensure that their key assets can be stored safely and well maintained.

To obtain this certification, you must pass the Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) exam. The examination content covers five areas, including: auditing information systems, IT governance and management, information system acquisition, development and implementation, information system operation, maintenance and service management, and information asset protection. The most suitable job position for this certification is an IT auditor. The average annual salary of CISA certificate holders is USD 132,000.

TOP 6: CISSPCertified Information Systems Security Professional

If you work in analysis, auditing, systems engineering or related fields, then Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) may be your ideal certification. CISSP is an information assurance professional certification. This type of personnel is mainly responsible for defining the architecture, management, design and control systems that can ensure the security of the company.

If you pass the test (certification requires you to have at least five years of relevant experience), you can expect an average annual salary of 141,000 U.S. dollars. It should be noted that even if you are certified, you still need to earn continuing education credits every year to keep your certificate qualifications.

TOP 5: PMPProject Management Professional

Project management professional (PMP) certificate is currently one of the most recognized project management certificates, which is created and managed by Project Management Institute(PMI). Obtaining this certificate means that you are qualified for project management and project team work. You need to pass tests in five specific areas: initiation, planning, execution, monitoring and controlling, and project close.

But before being certified, you need to complete at least 35 hours of relevant training before you can take the exam. If you have a bachelor's degree, you need 4,500 hours of project management experience (7,500 hours for those without a degree). It takes several years to obtain PMP certification, but it is worth it. Currently, the average annual income for people who obtain PMP certification is USD 143,000.

TOP 4: CRISCCertified in Risk and Information Systems Control

Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC) exam will test your abilities in four major areas: identification, assessment, response and mitigation, and control monitoring and reporting. CRISC used to be the ninth most popular IT certificate, and now it ranks sharply. This reflects the renewed focus of the entire industry on assessing IT risks in the business. If you have more than three years of relevant experience (this is a prerequisite for certification) and think that discovering and managing risks is very interesting, then CRISC certification may be worth a try.

If you pass the exam and find the right position, a CRISC certified expert can earn an average of USD 146,000 per year. This test contains 150 questions and lasts approximately four hours.

TOP 3: CISMCertified Information Security Manager

Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) certificate jumped from the eighth place last year to the third place this year. It has become the certification with the highest pay, and its main focus is on information security management. Your job will be to design and construct security protocols and manage company security. As CISM, you can visit business departments outside of IT to communicate face-to-face with the company’s stakeholders. You can register for the test through the ISACA website and this exam locator (


CISM also has a high income. Global Knowledge stated that as a CISM, you can earn an average of USD 148,000per year. But if you choose this route, then you must complete 200-question tests on topics such as information security governance, information risk management, and incident management.


TOP 2: AWS Certified Solutions Architect-Associate (AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate Practice Exam)


Last year, AWS Certified Solutions Architect certification returned to the list, and this year it became the second most IT on-demand certification. The AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate Practice Exam will test your expertise and ability to design systems on AWS. If you have actual AWS experience and are used to building large distributed systems, then this certification may be just what you need.


To obtain this certification, candidates must pass the AWS Certified Solutions Architect-Associate (SAA-C02) exam. In addition, you must first obtain the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification. AWS also recommends accumulating one year of practical design experience on AWS before taking this exam. The test time is 80 minutes and is managed by the PSI Center in the United States. The average annual income of successful AWS certified solution architects isUSD 149,000.


TOP 1: Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect


Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect made the list for the first time in 2017, and has topped the list for two consecutive years. This certification means that IT professionals are recognized as cloud architects on Google Cloud Platform (GCP). After completing this certification, you can prove that you have the ability to design, develop, and manage Google Cloud architecture through using GCP technology.


To obtain this certification, you need to have an in-depth understanding of the topic of which solutions should be adopted in different situations. The demand for cloud technology is still high, and in the foreseeable future, it is crucial for most organizations to master the tools developed by Google for secure, scalable and reliable solutions. The average annual income of professional cloud architects certified by Google is USD 175,000.


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